For nearly a century, there has been an active debate in Canada on the issue of electoral reform at both the federal and provincial levels. Following the 2015 federal election, the Trudeau government began a new initiative and an all-party House of Commons committee was appointed to study the issue and to make recommendations.
In this workshop, we will consider the questions of representation and democratic accountability that have driven the debate in Canada as well as the structure of past reform attempts in several provinces and the related issue of Senate reform. We will also examine the characteristics of alternative electoral systems and the merits of various unicameral and bicameral institutional models. Particular attention will be given to countries such as Japan and New Zealand that have accomplished fundamental reform of their electoral systems, and the processes employed in those cases that have led to these outcomes.