Calgary Evening Pubinar Series (IAIA-WNC Southern Alberta)  The Meaning of Meaningful Consultation

Speaker: Jorge Avilés - Manager: Indigenous & Community Relations at Canada West Land Services

Where: The Metropolitan - Private Dining Room (150, 318 – 8 Avenue S.W., Calgary)

When: Tuesday, May 14, 2019 from 5:30-7:00 pm

Cost: Free for IAIA-WNC members; $10 for non-members ($5 for students)

The International Association for Impact Assessment - Western and Northern Canada Affiliate (IAIA-WNC) is pleased to announce the return of our “Pubinar” series of talks for another season. Come on out to The Metropolitan in downtown Calgary to hear great speakers and get involved in some lively discussion. Drinks and food are available for purchase from The Metropolitan’s excellent menu (happy-hour pricing before 6pm). Admission is free for IAIA-WNC members, or $10 for non-members ($5 for students). Yearly memberships can be purchased at the door, or on the IAIA-WNC website (

The Talk: The holistic concept of sustainability, ruled and supported by the three Ps – Profit, Planet and People – is inherent to the foundational idea that Indigenous cultures hold: everything is connected, and the way in which we treat everything and everybody around us, in the end, affects us too. This common ground serves as a platform to engage in more agreeable conversations and conduct truly meaningful consultation with Indigenous groups. Considering the interests of all those affected builds stronger futures for everybody and everything.

Successful engagement is the product of being able to think beyond the regulatory obligations the system imposes.

About the speaker: After a successful but brief career in Civil Engineering, Mr. Avilés went back to school to complete a degree in International Studies (French) at the University of Calgary. His now unveiled passion for people took him to all four corners of the globe to manage green field sustainable projects and serve as cross-cultural diplomat in some of the most challenging sociopolitical systems in the world.

His years as an overseas Sustainable Projects Manager provided him with more than a decade’s experience in communicating, training and negotiating with Indigenous groups in Latin America, West Africa and Southeast Asia. A true citizen of the world, Mr. Avilés not only makes good use of the 4 languages he’s fluent in, but he also trains other professionals in the art of cross-cultural communications and negotiations. He also takes the time to volunteer as a Mentor for the University of Calgary’s Haskayne graduate students’ program and the Indigenous Leadership Program at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity. Most recently, the University of Calgary asked Mr. Avilés to assist with the writing of an Indigenous Awareness unit for Engineering students at the Schulich School of Engineering. His participation in several significant initiatives focused on the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have afforded Mr. Avilés the savvy needed to promote a corporate culture of early engagement and meaningful consultation – a set of skills he’s proud to utilize at his present employer: Canada West Land Services.