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The Burnaby Community Assembly was part of the three-year Urban Resilient Futures Initiative. The founding partners for Urban Resilient Futures are the City of Burnaby, Simon Fraser University’s Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue and Vancity, initiated by a generous contribution from an anonymous donor. This was also supported by the Civic Innovation Lab, and a contribution from the Renovate the Public Hearing Initiative. For this project, the Centre for Dialogue had full editorial autonomy from its partners and funders in running the Burnaby Community Assembly.

The Burnaby Community Assembly Advisory Committee was appointed by the Centre for Dialogue to provide editorial advice on the Assembly to ensure the process is fair, equitable and balanced. The Burnaby Community Assembly Advisory Committee Members are:

  • Ana Maria Bustamante, Manager, Burnaby Intercultural Planning Table

  • Dr. Andréanne Doyon, Director of SFU’s Planning Program and lead on developing a resilience framework for Burnaby

  • Jeffrey Yu, Founder of REL Technology and Vice President of the New Vista Society

  • Noreen Ma, Manager, Community Development, Burnaby Public Library

Lee-Ann Garnett, Deputy General Manager Planning and Development also attends Advisory Committee meetings as a representative from the City of Burnaby to offer feedback and advice but does not vote on Committee decisions.

Please see the summaries of Advisory Committee meetings below:

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About the Centre for Dialogue

Simon Fraser University’s Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue seeks to foster shared understanding and positive action through dialogue and engagement. Through processes such as the Citizen Dialogues on Canada’s Energy Future, the Burnaby Business Recovery Task Force and Your Voice. Your Home. Meeting the Housing Needs of Burnaby Residents, the Centre has engaged hundreds of thousands of residents and stakeholders to create innovative solutions for critical community issues.

Principles for Partner Collaboration


Assembly Autonomy

The Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue (the Centre for Dialogue) designed and oversaw the Assembly with editorial autonomy from the City of Burnaby (the City) and all other partners. This met the standards for arm’s length independence recommended by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).


The design of the Assembly was also be informed by experts, community groups, proponents of specific viewpoints, members of equity-deserving communities and the visioning phase of the City’s Official Community Plan engagement.


Building on Official Community Plan Engagement

Throughout the Assembly, the Centre for Dialogue worked in close partnership with the City to create an evidence-informed process that supported the City’s Official Community Plan decision-making and integrates with City-led engagement activities. The Assembly did not replace the broad-based public engagement processes led by the City of Burnaby, but helped to deepen engagement so that residents better understand the constraints faced by decision-makers. Members from the wider community also had opportunities to interact with the Assembly, helping to spread evidence-based discussion more widely.


Equity and Inclusion

Both the Centre for Dialogue and the City of Burnaby are committed to equity and inclusion. The Assembly’s work took place in ways that invested deeply in community relationships, advanced accessibility and inclusion, and supported the City’s commitments to Truth and Reconciliation.

Over 61% of the Burnaby community have at least one mother tongue besides English. Equitable engagement with Burnaby’s diverse language communities has been supported by generous contributions from both the City of Burnaby and the Renovate the Public Hearing Initiative.

To support equity in participation, accessibility funding was also available to offset expenses that would have prevented Assembly Members from attending.

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Want to find out more about the Burnaby Community Assembly?

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