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About the Program

The Policy Leadership Program (PLP) is designed for public service policy leaders who are facing increasing complexity and uncertainty in a rapidly evolving context that demands new ways of working and new leadership skills.  The program will provide you with a deep understanding of what constitutes policy excellence and the “how” of policy, including new and emerging approaches to policy design and development. You will explore what is unique about policy leadership, reflect on your own leadership values and practices, and engage with experienced leaders on how to inspire and nurture your policy team. The program emphasizes discussion, interactive exercises, and applicable learnings from recent policy files.  You will be equipped with the tools, knowledge, and confidence to be a more effective policy leader.

Offered in partnership with the Public Policy Forum Academy

Public Policy Forum Logo

Who Should Attend?

This program is suited for Directors (executives in EX1 or equivalent positions) and Aspiring Directors (minimum of one year leading a team) from the federal, provincial and territorial public service who are looking to deepen their knowledge and skills for policy leadership and position themselves for continued growth as an executive.

Program Features

  • Real life case studies and experiential workshops.
  • High calibre guest speakers and subject matter experts.
  • Exercises to explore your personal leadership values and competencies.
  • Exploration of the many dimensions of policy leadership, e.g., strategic, adaptive, character, collaborative, and inclusive leadership.
  • Networking and community building.

Key Learning Outcomes

The Policy Leadership Program is aligned with the Government of Canada’s Key Leadership Competencies. Upon completion of the program, you will:

A diagram of the Government of Canada's Key Leadership Competencies.

Create Vision and Strategy

  • Improve your ability to effectively navigate the evolving policy landscape.
  • Develop your strategic leadership ability.

Collaborate with Partners

  • Enhance your ability to lead horizontal initiatives with a range of partners and stakeholders.
  • Deepen your understanding of Indigenous reconciliation and co-development.

Achieve Results

  • Acquire an in-depth understanding of diversity, equity and inclusion and its role in policy effectiveness.
  • Navigate complex policy development using new knowledge, tools and practices.

Promote Innovation and Guide Change

  • Learn about new policy tools and methods, such as applying behavioural insights to policy design.
  • Develop competencies required to lead innovation and build innovative policy teams in government.

Mobilize People - Uphold Integrity and Respect

  • Create safe space for debate, modelling fearless advice.
  • Practice inclusive leadership and mobilizing diverse teams.
  • Improve your adaptability, persistence, and resilience.


Lead facilitators will understand and encourage participation in both languages. Some guest speakers may be unilingual. Resource material will be made available in both official languages whenever possible; however, some optional materials may not be available in both languages.


Rachel Wernick

Rachel Wernick

Program Director

Sara-Christine Gemson

Sara-Christine Gemson



Registration Deadline

Tuesday, April 30, 2024


In-person sessions from 8:30am to 4:30pm.


The program begins on Wednesday, May 15, 2024. For full program dates, please consult the Program Schedule.


$9,500.00 + HST 

$8,550 + HST for PPF Members/Telfer Alumni
Cancellation & Payment Policy


99 Bank St., Suite 200
Ottawa, ON K1P 6B9

More information

Tailored Programs

Our programs and certificates can be delivered to your employees and tailored to fit your organization’s specific requirements.

To discuss your needs, please contact us.

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