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Jun 01

Flipping the Switch: Connecting Electricity Pricing and Canadian Competitiveness

Webinar with Alex Greco, Kevin Dawson and Blake Shaffer

Sponsored by:

The C.D. Howe Institute invites you to join us on Monday, June 1 for a webinar on electricity rates across the country, and their impact on capital investment and industrial competitiveness in Canada.


C.D. Howe Institute events and webinars are open to members and their guests.

Please follow this link or contact events@cdhowe.org to register.

Alex Greco, Director of Policy and Government Relations, Canadian Manufacturers and Exporter

Alex Greco is a Policy and Government Relations Director with Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters (CME), Canada’s largest trade and industry association, and the voice of manufacturing and global business in Canada. Alex is the lead on all relevant files related to tax, energy, and environment policies and regulations that impacts the competitiveness, investment and growth of manufacturing and exporting in Canada. He is also responsible for all government relations activities in Ontario as well as member relations responsibilities for Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). Alex has been able to increase the influence of the CME, secure new funding opportunities and has successfully advocated for favourable policy changes to help manufacturers grow through government relations, strategic stakeholder coalitions and advocacy at the federal and provincial levels. As part of his responsibilities, he advises on labour, occupational health and safety and manufacturing policy issues 

Prior to joining CME, Alex was the Public Affairs Manager for GS1 Canada where he secured government partnerships and funding for industry projects, raised the organization’s profile with government and industry stakeholders, advanced a public affairs plan on multiple policy issues, and sat on a number of internal and external committees to advance key organizational objectives.

Before GS1 Canada, Alex was also the Executive Assistant to a Toronto City Councillor where he obtained significant media and public relations experience. Prior to this role, Alex was a Policy Analyst at the Ontario Office of the Official Opposition where he advanced significant research initiatives and developed his communication, policy, and outreach skills. In the spring of 2012, Alex was a Policy Intern for Toronto Election Services and was responsible for preparing a report that analyzed online voting in the City of Toronto and how it could be implemented in future elections.

Outside of his roles and responsibilities with CME, he is an Executive Board Member with the Public Affairs Association of Canada, the President of the York Mills Gardens Community Association and a director on the St. Michael’s College Alumni Association Board of Directors. Alex has volunteered on various political campaigns where he has been an advisor to candidates, organized political fundraisers and performed public policy research. Alex has also contributed to various other organizations, including the University of Toronto Alumni Association and the North York Harvest Food Bank.

Alex earned both his Honours Bachelor of Arts (H.B.A) in political science and criminology and Masters of Arts (M.A.) in political science from the University of Toronto. He brings with him valuable government and communication experience built on the responsibility of driving strategy and execution of all public affairs components for key initiatives. Alex can be contacted at alex.greco@cme-mec.ca.


Kevin Dawson, Director of Market Design, Alberta Electric System Operator

Kevin Dawson is Director, Forecasting and Analytics at the Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO) and has been with the organization since 2010.

In this role he is responsible for overseeing the development and use of forecasts and data analysis to provide insights used within the AESO and by industry stakeholders to make informed decisions.

Prior to joining the AESO, Mr. Dawson spent 12 years at TransAlta, holding progressively senior roles in the areas of market analysis, risk management, commercial and portfolio management and commodity hedging.

Kevin holds a Bachelor of Arts Honours degree in Economics and a Master of Arts degree in Economics, both from the University of Calgary.  In addition, he is a Chartered Financial Analyst charterholder.


Blake Shaffer, Assistant Professor at the Department of Economics and School of Public Policy, University of Calgary

Blake Shaffer is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Economics and School of Public Policy at the University of Calgary. His work focusses on electricity markets, climate policy and energy transitions. He uses empirical methods to evaluate policy effectiveness and better understand consumer and firm behaviour.

Prior to returning to academia, Shaffer had a 15 year career in energy trading, specializing in electricity, natural gas and emissions markets. He holds a PhD in economics from the University of Calgary, Master of Philosophy in economics from the University of Cambridge and a bachelor’s degree in environmental sciences from Queen’s University. He has recently held visiting scholar and Fulbright postdoctoral scholar positions at the Toulouse School of Economics and Stanford University.

His recent research has been published in the American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, Canadian Journal of Economics and the Energy Journal. His popular writing has appeared in the Globe and Mail, Maclean’s, Postmedia, CBC, and other media outlets. Shaffer has also served as policy advisor for the governments of Alberta, British Columbia and Canada on energy and environmental policy matters.


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