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The Progressive Economics Forum

Winner of the 2016 Galbraith Prize

The Progressive Economics Forum is pleased to announce Marjorie Griffith Cohen as the winner of the 2016 Galbraith Prize in Economics. Our selection committee included past winner Lars Osberg, Joan McFarland (St. Thomas University), Angella MacEwen (CLC), Fletcher Baragar (Manitoba)  and David Pringle (PEF), and was chaired by Marc Lee (CCPA-BC). Marjorie has accepted the Prize and will deliver the Galbraith Lecture at the Canadian Economics Association meetings in Ottawa on Saturday, June 4. Thanks to our judges and to the Galbraith family.

Below is the nomination of Prof. Griffith Cohen by Iglika Ivanova, Brenda Spotton-Visano, Armine Yalnizyan, Duncan Cameron and Jim Stanford, which does a great job to summarize her extensive career.

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It is our honour to nominate Marjorie Griffin Cohen for the PEF’s Galbraith Prize in Economics for her contributions to political economy in Canada. Marjorie Cohen is a professor of Political Science and Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies at Simon Fraser University. She is a scholar in the feminist tradition, who writes on public policy and economics with special emphasis on issues concerning the Canadian economy, Canadian public policy, women, labour, international trade agreements and deregulation of the electricity sector. She is well known and highly regarded for her work on women’s work and income security, and more recently the implications of climate change for labour in Canada.

Professor Cohen is an activist with a strong commitment to social justice. She was a director of NewGrade Energy (Sask) and has served on several boards and commissions in British Columbia including the B.C. Industrial Inquiry Commission on the Fisheries; Board of Directors of B.C. Hydro; Board of Directors of B.C. Power Exchange.  She was also instrumental in establishing the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives in B.C., was its first Chair, and is on its Board of Directors.

She is a scholar and an activist whose work perfectly exemplifies the PEF’s goal of supporting thorough-going, progressive democratic structural change in the policies and institutions that currently govern the economy (including macroeconomic policy; labour market institutions and regulations; policies affecting both paid and unpaid work;  the regulation of international economic relationships; and environmental protection and regulation), and a desire to participate in the strengthening and promotion of these alternative policies.

She is currently involved in two research projects related to global warming and gender and a project on the gender and economic crises. Her large scale research project in Economic Security (funded by the Social Science and Humanities Research Council) brought together 22 community-based researchers, 22 researchers from universities in B.C. and many students in the study of the impact of government policies on vulnerable populations. Its most significant work is to try to establish new public policy that would meet the economic security needs of this population.

In addition to several scholarly articles and policy papers, she has authored and edited several books on women’s work and globalization.

  1. Free Trade and the Future of Women’s Work: Manufacturing and Service Industries (University of Toronto Press, Higher Education Division, 2013)
  2. Public Policy for Women (University of Toronto Press, 2009)
  3. Remapping Gender in the New Global Order (London & New York: Routledge 2007),
  4. Training the Excluded for Work: Access and Equity for Women, Immigrants, First Nations, Youth, and People with Low Income (UBC Press 2003)
  5. Governing Under Stress: Middle Powers and the Challenge of Globalization (Fernwood Press, 2004), with Stephen Clarkson
  6. Global Turbulence: Social Activists’ and State Responses to Globalization (Ashgate 2003), with Stephen McBride
  7. Canadian Women’s Issues: Volume II: Bold Visions (James Lorimer & Company, 1995) with Ruth Roach Pierson
  8. Women’s Work, Markets, and Economic Development in Nineteenth-century Ontario (University of Toronto Press, 1988)
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