I call the meeting to order. Thank you, colleagues.
We will now start meeting 16 of our study on electoral reform. We have three witnesses with us this afternoon. We have Professor Matthew Harrington, Professor Thomas Axworthy, and Professor Pippa Norris, who is joining us by video conference.
I would like to take a couple of minutes to briefly introduce our witnesses.
Professor Matthew Harrington is president of the common law program committee of Université de Montréal's law faculty. He teaches U.S. constitutional law and property and trust law, and has published works on the economic origins of law, among other topics. Professor Harrington recently co-hosted a conference at the Université de Montréal, funded in part by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, about the relationship between the Supreme Court of Canada and common law.
Professor Thomas Axworthy is a renowned public servant, political strategist, writer, and professor. He is best known for his role as senior policy adviser and principal secretary to Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau from 1981 to 1984, during which time he played a key role in repatriating the Constitution and introducing the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. He has made a lifetime's work of notable contributions to Canadian society, and continues to facilitate international action and co-operation as a member, and more recently as Secretary-General, of the InterAction Council. In 2009 Professor Axworthy chaired the advisory task force on democracy promotion for the Minister of State for Democratic Reform of the day. He was also chair and executive director of the Centre for the Study of Democracy at Queen's University. In 2012 Professor Axworthy was awarded the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal for his contributions to Canadian public policy.
Professor Pippa Norris is the McGuire Lecturer in Comparative Politics at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, an Australian Research Council laureate fellow, and a professor of government and international relations at the University of Sydney in Australia. Dr. Norris is also the director of the electoral integrity project that is based at the University of Sydney and supported by the Australian Research Council and other foundations. Dr. Norris is one of the world's most cited political scientists. Her research focuses on public opinion and elections, democratic institutions and cultures, political communications in countries around the world, and gender politics. She was recently awarded the Brown medal for democracy. Other accolades include the Karl Deutsch award, the Johan Skytte award, and the Kathleen Fitzpatrick Australian Laureate Fellowship. Dr. Norris's most recent books are Contentious Elections, Why Elections Fail, and Checkbook Elections? Political Finance in Comparative Perspective.
We shall start with.... Pardon me?
I think Mr. Reid was just expressing awe and how much he's impressed by our panel.
If it's okay, we'll start with Dr. Norris, please, for 10 minutes.