Sunil Johal is Policy Director at the Mowat Centre, an independent public policy think tank at the University of Toronto. He leads the Centre's research activities, manages the research team and teaches a variety of executive education courses. He is frequently invited to advise governments and international organizations about disruptive technologies and regulatory and policy issues.
Previously, he was a Director with the Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Innovation where he led the government's efforts to modernize its regulatory environment. He has also held senior management and policy roles with the Cabinet Office, Ministries of Finance and Intergovernmental Affairs and federal Treasury Board Secretariat. He joined the federal civil service through the Recruitment of Policy Leaders initiative in 2003.
He is frequently invited to speak about the future of work, technology and social policy at conferences in Canada and abroad. He has contributed expert commentary and advice on regulatory and policy issues to a range of organizations and media outlets, including the G-20, World Economic Forum, Brookings Institution, Globe and Mail, Toronto Star, CBC Radio and Television, CTV News, The Guardian, Maclean’s, Ottawa Citizen, Policy Options, TVO and the OECD.
Sunil has been a lecturer with Ryerson University’s Department of Politics and Public Administration since 2009, and has taught executive education courses on change management, public policy and disruptive technologies to senior public sector officials from countries including Canada, China and Russia. He holds degrees from the London School of Economics, Osgoode Hall Law School and the University of Western Ontario.
Lyft pulls into Ottawa. With another big ride-share company hitting the road, how do other transit options fare? And what does it all mean for how we move around this city? A look at what changes when there's a shakeup in the sharing economy.More
New technologies may lead to millions of job losses in Canada and governments here are not as prepared for change as they are in other countries. Sunil Johal discusses automation and the future of work in Ontario. More
Sunil Johal on a panel discussing how the rise of artificial intelligence could impact Canada's workforce and what we need to do to ensure the transition doesn't leave workers behind as the labour market evolves.More
Creating a Ministry of Failure in Canadian government
Failure is not an option for government. Public dollars are at stake. Political leaders expect perfection in program design and policy thinking to preserve their re-election hopes. Civil servants hoping to move up the career ladder are loathe to admit mistakes. Yet, if governments don’t fail sometimes, how can they successfully tackle the cross-cutting, complex issues that increasingly bedevil society?
Canadians have seen the world of work rapidly reshape itself around them in the past 30 years. Globalization, technological change, declining unionization rates and new business strategies are among the forces that have combined to create a labour market characterized by stagnant wages and eroding job quality.More
Recently, Finance Minister Bill Morneau and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau elicited strong reactions by suggesting Canadians need to get used to precarious employment because it’s the new normal. But the reality could be much worse.More
The Promise and Perils of Shared Mobility in the GTHA
This report makes a series of recommendations for building a robust and flexible transportation system that can effectively respond to the emergence of “shared mobility” in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area.More
After 18 months, several traffic-halting protests, two court challenges and thousands of water cooler discussions, the moment of truth is near. Toronto’s city council is expected to develop a regulatory framework for taxis and the ride-sourcing company Uber in April.
Chapter From OECD Tourism Trends and Policies 2016
In this research contribution for the OECD's Tourism Trends and Policies 2016, the Mowat Centre discusses the growth of the sharing economy, considers what it means for the tourism sector and assesses key policy implications.More
Last week an Ontario Superior Court judge heard arguments in a court battle between the City of Toronto and Uber in a case being watched closely by policymakers and regulators from across the country.
This paper outlines the focus of the Renewing Canada's Social Architecture project - looking at the ways that Canada has changed and where our social policies and programs have failed to keep pace.More
On March 26, 2015, Mowat Centre Policy Director Sunil Johal and Policy Associate Jamie Van Ymeren provided expert testimony to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities. Their remarks focused on social impact bonds, outcomes-based funding and the role governments can play in providing an enabling environment and supportive infrastructure for social finance and innovative program delivery. These are their opening remarks.
Governments around the world are struggling to cope with new "sharing economy" technology platforms that allow people to buy goods and services directly from one another in "peer-to-peer" transactions.
This Shifting Gears report is the first to examine how behavioural insights could drive culture change in the public sector. It applies the increasingly prominent ‘nudge’ concept to the public service itself.More
Coordinating Economic Development Spending in Canada
This Mowat Note argues for better coordination of the $20 billion per year that is currently spent on municipal, provincial and federal economic development, R&D, and innovation programs and incentives.More
This report outlines global megatrends facing world governments between today and 2030, and highlights necessary transformative changes and appropriate strategies required for successfully responding to these megatrends.More