Welcome to the FOCAL archive

The Canadian Foundation for the Americas (FOCAL) is no longer in operation. This website documents FOCAL's activities and accomplishments throughout its existence. Thank you for your interest in the work of FOCAL.

Research Papers & Reports 2009

The Role of Civil Society in Shaping Trade Policy
Andrea M. Ewart, Esq. 
FOCAL Research Paper
December 2009
This paper seeks solutions and tools for use by governments and CSOs, particularly in the Caribbean, to address the challenges of developing effective consultative mechanisms for incorporating civil society into the process of trade policymaking. One of the first challenges is to define civil society.

Canada Report 2008: Civil Society Participation in the Summits of the Americas
Active Democracy Network
FOCAL Report
December 2009
After forming expert panels, distributing surveys to informed individuals, andconducting background research in these four themes, FOCAL convened a groupof Canadian civil society organizations, academics, public policy representativesand advocates to a symposium in Ottawa on May 15, 2008, to discuss Canada’sprogress in implementing theme-related Summit commitments based on theirexperiences. The event brought together over 30 individuals with practicalexperience in these fields, including with gender perspectives. They providedvaluable insights into the Canadian government’s progress on the four themes.The recommendations in this report have emerged from this discussion andresearch on the perceptions of this group of people and highlight where expertsbelieve attention is warranted. 

Canada at home in the hemisphere?
Carlo Dade
FOCAL Commentary
December 2009
Looking back, it appears that our shift away from Europe may have been less about the Americasand more about America. The view from below the Rio Grande is telling in this regard; thoughan active OAS member, outside of its orbit, Canada appears as a curiosity, popping up from behindthe American behemoth from time to time. The region’s frustration with Canada is not withwhat it does, but that it does not do more and do so more consistently. 


A View of the Hemisphere



Explore the link between governance and development.