Digital literacy for the internet age

Wednesday November 25: 3:30 – 4:25 PM

The innovative and digitally-driven society we live in today requires that we confront internet-connected devices and platforms in virtually every area of our lives. In a matter of months, COVID-19 drastically shifted the way we work and interact with one another, while also shedding a light on the importance of digital literacy and digital skill building. Arguably, digital literacy may be more important now than ever before as our lives become more virtual and remote. This session will explore the challenges and opportunities for building digital capacity and a safer cyber-community in this evolving landscape, as well as navigate the concerns around internet-related threats and challenges of misinformation and the digital divide.


Daphnee Nostrome, Ontario Digital Service
Lequanne Collins-Bacchus, Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat
Matthew Johnson, MediaSmarts
Maureen James, CIRA
Jim Ghadbane, CANARIE (moderator)

Daphnee Nostrome
Daphnée has been a changemaker for over 20 years. A passionate advocate for digital inclusion, she provides strategic advice to a range of community groups in Canada and abroad. She delivered talks on digital literacy at the Diversity in Digital Services conference, FW50, Harvard Kennedy School and New York City’s Mayor’s Office of the Chief Technology Officer.

She is currently Sr. Manager of the Content Design Chapter at the Ontario Digital Service. Prior to that, she founded and led the Digital Training team at the Ontario Digital Service.

Lequanne Collins-Bacchus (she/her)
Lequanne is currently an advisor at the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat working on files related to the D9. 

Her past work in digital transformation includes being a Code for Canada fellow in 2019, advising on Ontario’s first Data Strategy at the Ontario Digital Service, and researching artificial intelligence at OCAD University. She has spoken about and exhibited her work in London, UK at the Mozilla Festival; in Tallinn, Estonia at Smart-Up BSR; in Toronto, Canada at the Toronto Offsite Design Festival, Make Change Conference, Open Government Conference, and Youth Impact Summit at Mars Discovery District, to name a few.   

Lequanne has pursued graduate studies in Estonia, focusing on Technology Governance as well as in Information Management Systems at Harvard University, Extension School. She is passionate about human-centred, ethical, co-created digital transformation!

Matthew Johnson
Matthew is the Director of Education for MediaSmarts, Canada’s center for digital and media literacy. He is the author of many of MediaSmarts’ lessons, parent materials and interactive resources and a lead on MediaSmarts’ research projects. Matthew is the architect of MediaSmarts’ Use, Understand, Create: Digital Literacy Framework for Canadian K-12 Schools and the Media Literacy 101 and Digital Literacy 101 professional development programs. He has contributed blogs and articles to websites and magazines around the world as well as presenting MediaSmarts’ research materials on topics such as copyright, cyberbullying, body image and online hate to parliamentary committees, academic conferences and governments and organizations around the world. As a member of the Canadian Pediatric Society’s Digital Health Task Force he participated in the drafting of the CPS recommendations for children’s screen time.

Maureen James
Maureen manages the Community Investment Program at the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA), which funds innovative community internet projects to build a resilient, trusted and secure internet for all Canadians. Her background is in fundraising, grantmaking and strategy development with non-profits internationally and here in Canada.

With the recent release of CIRA’s ‘Unconnected’ digital funding research report (, her current obsession is working with others to create a new tradition of digital philanthropy in Canada – not least for digital literacy projects, which ranked highest in terms of funding need in Canada.

Jim Ghadbane
Jim was appointed President and CEO of CANARIE in 2013, after joining the organization as Chief Technology Officer in 2010. Jim’s leadership, technical expertise, and focus on stakeholder needs support an increased impact and relevance of CANARIE programs and services in Canada’s public and private sectors.

Nationally, Jim works to strengthen the governance, collaborative operation, and evolution of Canada’s National Research and Education Network (NREN). Internationally, Jim works with global colleagues on the NREN CEO Forum to guide the evolution of the Global Research and Education Network.

Prior to joining CANARIE, Jim held a variety of executive positions at leading ICT companies, including Bridgewater Systems (now part of Amdocs), Ceyba Corporation, Alcatel Corporation, and Newbridge Networks. Jim is a devoted mentor to many colleagues and an avid golfer.