International policy

The President has appointed Dr. Adel El Zaïm as Chief Internationalization Officer for a three-year term, beginning August 13, 2018. Following the publication of the report of the Committee on the University’s International Policy, Dr. El Zaïm’s role will include developing an internationalization strategy and action plan to ensure the University is well positioned on the international stage. He will focus on international strategic management and planning at the University and will seek to promote recruitment and develop successful international partnerships.




The Chief Internationalization Officer will lead and coordinate the University of Ottawa’s international engagement efforts, international institutional strategy and initiatives in support of its goal to be a leading Canadian and global research university.

Drawing on the report of the President’s Committee on the University's International Policy:

  • Develop and recommend an internationalization strategy and action plan for the University of Ottawa that will address the University's challenges in student recruitment as well as in implementing and managing research and training partnerships and outreach activities
  • Ensure cohesion in the University's international effort and strong presence on the international stage
  • Support the faculties' international activities by drawing on the expertise and distinctiveness of each faculty
  • Ensure a coherent and concerted institutional vision of internationalization and its benefits for the University by striking a standing committee on internationalization, chairing and coordinating the work of the committee and initiating institutional initiatives in collaboration with the University's various units and faculties
  • Represent the University at national and international meetings and events related to internationalization and international relations
  • Coordinate visits by foreign delegations to the University and liaise with the diplomatic community in Ottawa
  • Participate in the international component of the University's next strategic planning cycle
  • Report regularly to the President and the Administration Committee


Adel El Zaïm took office as the Chief Internationalization Officer of the University of Ottawa on August 13, 2018. He is also the founder of Internationalization Canada.

Adel has worked for several organizations like most recently the University of British Columbia (UBC) when he occupied the position of Executive Director of the International Office.

Read Adel's full biography


Committee on International Policy

The Committee on International Policy was Committee was struck and mandated by the President and Vice-Chancellor to create the framework and foundations for an effective and modern internationalization policy so that the University can address the challenges and issues of an ever-changing, interdependent and competitive globalized society. The Committee, chaired by Vice-President, International and Francophonie Sanni Yaya, is comprised of individuals from the various groups of the University community.


The Committee will be asked to create the framework and foundations for an effective and modern internationalization policy that will allow the University to address the challenges and issues of an ever-changing, interconnected and competitive global society.

The Committee will look at, for example:

  • How the University can take full advantage of the elements that make it unique, including:
    • Its location in the heart of Canada’s capital
    • Its bilingual nature
  • Principles promoting internationalization of current educational programs
  • Whether to increase our level of cooperation with foreign universities and, if so, the priorities that should underlie the strategy for doing so at both the undergraduate and graduate levels
  • Ways to update our orientation and integration programs for international students to help increase the size of this cohort
  • The role of outgoing mobility and ways to provide more versatile training that offers students greater flexibility
  • The geographic areas we should target (if necessary, based on disciplines or undergraduate/graduate programs)
  • The efforts required to harmonize the internationalization policy and scientific production involving international collaborations and how the University can better support its researchers and students in this area
  • The ways the University itself can and should ensure the coordination and crossdisciplinarity of activities related to internationalization, with particular attention to the interdisciplinary nature of these activities
List of Members


  • Sanni Yaya, Vice-President, International and Francophonie

Faculty representatives

  • Jacques Bradwejn, Full Professor and Dean, Faculty of Medicine
  • Gilles Breton, Full Professor and Director, Graduate School of Public and International Affairs
  • François Laroque, Interim Dean, Faculty of Law, Common Law Section
    (delegates: Yves Le Bouthillier, Full Professor and Vice-Dean, French Program, and Peter Oliver, Full Professor and Vice-Dean, Research)
  • Ghislain Otis, Full Professor and Canada Research Chair on Legal Diversity and Aboriginal Peoples, Faculty of Law, Civil Law Section
  • Michael Parent, Full Professor and Vice-Dean, Career Development, Telfer School of Management
  • Ousmane Seidou, Associate Professor, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Civil Engineering
  • Alain St-Amant, Full Professor and Vice-Dean, Undergraduate Studies, Faculty of Science
  • Tim Stanley, Full Professor, Faculty of Education
  • Andrew Taylor, Full Professor, Faculty of Arts, Department of English
  • Rachel Thibeault, Full Professor, Faculty of Health Sciences
  • Rebecca Tiessen, Associate Professor, Faculty of Social Sciences, School of International Development and Globalization

External Member

  • Ferry de Kerckhove, Senior Fellow, Graduate School of Public and International Affairs, Former Ambassador of Canada to Indonesia and the Arab Republic of Egypt, and Former High Commissioner of Canada in Pakistan

Student representatives

  • Amina Haggar, Undergraduate Student, Faculty of Health Sciences
  • Calla Jeanne Barnett, Doctoral Student, Faculty of Social Sciences

Support staff

  • François Carrier, Director of International Research, Office of the Vice-President, Research
  • Régine Legault-Bouchard, Assistant Director, International Office, Office of the Vice-President, Academic and Provost
  • Alain Malette, Senior Director, Recruitment, Admissions and Market Development, Strategic Enrolment Management
  • Caroline Renaud, Director, International Office, Office of the Vice-President, Academic and Provost
  • Caroline Tremblay, Senior Manager, Office of the President

Research staff

  • Kate Grantham, Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of Ottawa
  • Peter Szyszlo, Doctoral Candidate, University of Ottawa
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