My nomination is an indication that our hard work in building Canada is recognized. All we do is to serve the community in return for embracing us when we needed it.  

Mehdi Mahdavi
Ottawa Immigrant Entrepreneurship Awards Nominee
The OLIP Council is committed to leadership.  In only a few years, we have a common vision and priorities, and are up to the task of implementing the Ottawa Immigration Strategy.

Salimatou Diallo
OLIP Council Vice Chair, Assemblée de la francophonie de l'Ontario
The City of Ottawa will continue to play a lead role in the implementation of the Ottawa Immigration Strategy, just as we did in the founding of OLIP.

Steve Desroches
City Councillor and Deputy Mayor of Ottawa
The WOW seminar on immigrant women’s nutrition and health was a step in the right direction towards closing the gap between academic researchers and service providers.

Josephine Etowa
Associate Professor, School of Nursing, University of Ottawa
In our city’s history, immigrants have always played an important role. They build our economic prosperity, diversify our culture, contribute to our social vitality.

Jim Watson
Mayor of Ottawa
I was happy to see integration to Algonquin territory and indigenous culture related programming in 2014 WOW. Please continue to involve local Aboriginal organisations and…

Linda Manning
WOW 2014 participant, Senior Fellow, University of Ottawa
OLIP helps to unite and share scarce resources for greater impact by working together in the field of student education.

Walter Piovesan
Associate Director of Education, Ottawa Carleton District School Board
The target beneficiary of the work of OLIP is the whole community. In this short period we have planted together important seeds for Ottawa’s development.  

Dick Stewart
OLIP Council
I’m really impressed with the level of energy and commitment around the Health and Wellbeing table and look forward to continuing collaboration between OLIP and OPH.

Marcela Tapia
Ottawa Public Health
All the WOW events that I went to were great – WOW does give a sense of a community trying to improve its attraction and retention!

Caroline Andrew
Professor, University of Ottawa


OLIP’s Multi-level Governance: Facilitating Collaborative Leadership & Action

OLIP’s governance structure supports community-wide leadership and action in the implementation of the Ottawa Immigration Strategy (OIS) while providing a transparent mechanism for continued planning, learning, and adjustment. The premise of OLIP’s governance structure is that the goals set out in the OIS can only be achieved through collaboration; no single institution can succeed in isolation. Responsibility for the implementation of the OIS is shared by OLIP partners and community stakeholders from multiple sectors of our community, including governments, employers, educational institutions, social, health and settlement service providers, civic groups, and private citizens.

OLIP’s governance structure is designed to leverage the experience, leadership, and strength of each sector and brings together multiple perspectives to bear on planning and action shared priorities.

The OLIP governance system is made up of: (1) structures (partners’ tables, roles, and relationships), (2) norms and principles, and (3) processes of listening, strategizing, engaging, and planning for collaborative actions toward the goals identified in the Ottawa Immigration Strategy  

1. Governance Structure (tables and teams)

There are five Sector Tables focused on action leadership; an Executive Committee providing strategic oversight to the OLIP Secretariat; and a Partnership Council that brings together leaders from all the sectors addressed by the Ottawa Immigration Strategy.
The OLIP tables are bound together through mutual relationships and accountability, with the OLIP Secretariat acting as a catalyst and facilitator of partners’ leadership and action planning. The following chart outlines the functions, roles, and responsibilities fulfilled by each component of the OLIP governance structure.

Structure Function Role
OLIP Secretariat Facilitation and support
  • Facilitate planning and development of shared vision and priorities
  • Convene OLIP governance tables and support partners’ progress on shared priorities
  • Promote shared and deepening awareness on targeted population groups and their needs, system gaps, and challenges
  • Track progress and report back
OLIP Council Leadership and strategic stewardship
  • Serve as ambassadors for the Ottawa Immigration Strategy and community-wide progress on Strategy priorities and goals
  • Receive reports on progress on the Ottawa Immigration Strategy from Sector Tables
  • Add knowledge and perspectives on plans and promote shared positions and a cohesive Ottawa voice immigration
  • Provide leadership for a progressive transformation of public and community services to achieve a seamless settlement and integration of immigrants
  • Host the Ottawa Immigration Forum
  • Provide formal approval of shared directions, frameworks, and internal policies
OLIP Leadership Group Championship & Collaborative Leadership
  • Provide a forum for community leaders to discuss common challenges encountered when working to make organizations and our community more inclusive;
  • Offer strategic advice that helps initiatives by OLIP and our partners be successful; and
  • Demonstrate leadership in the community in support of immigrant integration and OLIP priorities
OLIP Executive Committee Operational management and inter-sectoral coordination
  • Provide strategic support to the OLIP Governance
  • Represent the partnership in leadership and stakeholder engagement
  • Monitor the OLIP’s governance and leadership structures and resolve any issues that arise
  • Ensure the effective coordination of sector work and identify opportunities for enhanced collaboration and synergies
  • Oversee OLIP’s operational management by providing guidance and direction to the OLIP Director
  • Convene Sector Table Co-chairs biannually to set a cross sectoral agenda, at the beginning of OLIP Operational Cycles
Five OLIP Sector Tables
Settlement & Socio-Civic


Economic Integration

Health and Wellbeing


Coordinated and collaborative action
  • Engage organizations, coalitions, and institutions that can help the implementation of the sectoral priorities, set in the Ottawa Immigration Strategy
  • Establish task groups as needed to seek funding and plan collaborative action
  • Identify gaps in leadership engagement and work with the OLIP Secretariat to facilitate their participation in the OLIP governance and process
  • Work with the OLIP Secretariat to track progress on sectoral priorities
Ottawa Immigration Forum Learning, progress report, and leadership engagement
  • Share progress that has been made toward the goals of the Ottawa Immigration Strategy
  • Engage experts from outside of Ottawa to learn from experiences in other cities
  • Engage the public and raise awareness

2. Governance Principles

  • Inclusivity: encouraging the participation of all stakeholders, including immigrants.
  • Engagement of community leaders: promoting the commitment of leaders of all sectors
  • Collective learning: supporting the development and deepening of shared knowledge across sectors
  • Accountability: responsibility to each other and to the community
  • Transparency: openly sharing all information related to OLIP  
  • Community building: ensuring continuity and the growth of promising practices
  • Dialogue and consensus: addressing challenging issues through open, respectful discussion and decision-making
  • Creativity and innovation: promoting new approaches and synergies across all sectors
  • Decisiveness and effectiveness: advancing work without undue delays
  • Nimbleness: flexibility to ensure opportunities can be seized when they arise
  • Sustainability: supporting the efficient use of resources and leveraging public and private resources to build on what works.

3. Governance Cycle & Decision Making (Governance Process)

In addition to structures and principles, OLIP understands governance as an ongoing cycle of engagement, leadership and collaboration, embedded in processes of open dialogue, strategic priority setting, reflection, learning, collective action, and adjustments as needed.

OLIP operations follow two-year cycles, and medium term action periods, the end of which the OLIP Secretariat reviews progress and collective impact. The operational / governance cycles start with agenda setting for operational period at a bi-annual strategic meeting of OLIP Sector Table Co-chairs and members of the Executive Committee. The governance cycle culminates in the OLIP Council’s convening of a biannual Ottawa Immigration Forum, where collective progress is report to wider range of stakeholders and the Ottawa public.

During the 2-year cycle, OLIP partners connect in regular meetings of the tables defined above and convened by the OLIP Secretariat.  Task groups move forward ideas and plans as determined by the Sector Tables.