Dr. Rob Greenwood

Associate vice-president (public engagement and external relations) and director of the Leslie Harris Centre of Regional Policy and Development

Dr. Rob Greenwood

Dr. Rob Greenwood was appointed Associate Vice President, Public Engagement and External Relations, by the Board of Regents in March 2019. He is the founding Director of The Leslie Harris Centre of Regional Policy and Development. 

His Public Engagement and External Relations responsibilities include The Office of Public Engagement, Strategic Government Relations, Alumni Engagement, the Newfoundland Quarterly, the Botanical Garden and Memorial’s new Signal Hill Campus, including the Emera Innovation Exchange, Conference Services, Signal Hill Accommodations and, most recently, the Johnson Geo Centre.

He is lead on the Public Engagement Framework for the University, which coordinates and supports the University’s collaboration with partners and stakeholders. The Harris Centre’s mandate is to coordinate and facilitate Memorial University’s educational, research and public engagement activities in the areas of regional policy and development.

Rob has operated his own consulting business and has served as a director and assistant deputy minister of policy in economic development departments in Newfoundland and Labrador and in Saskatchewan. He was vice president of corporate development, at the Information Services Corporation of Saskatchewan, and was founding Director of the Sustainable Communities Initiative, a partnership of the University of Regina, the City of Regina, and the National Research Council of Canada.

In Saskatchewan, he led the development of the provincial economic strategy. In Newfoundland and Labrador, he was Director of Research and Principal Author of the 1995 Report of the Newfoundland Task Force on Community Economic Development, entitled Community Matters: The New Regional Economic Development. He then led the process to establish Regional Economic Development Boards in 20 Economic Zones, based upon the recommendations of the Task Force. Rob also led the development and co-authored A Strategy for Small-Scale Manufacturing in Newfoundland and Labrador, which was launched in 1999.

Rob holds a Ph.D. in Industrial and Business Studies from the University of Warwick, England, which he attended as a Commonwealth Scholar and an Institute of Social and Economic Research Doctoral Fellow. He was Newfoundland’s representative on the International Advisory Board of the North Atlantic Islands Program and co-edited Competing Strategies of Socio-Economic Development for Small Islands, published in 1998. He was also co-editor of Remote Control: Lessons in Governance for and from Small, Insular and Remote Regions, published in 2009. He has taught, consulted, published and presented extensively on community economic and regional development, strategic economic planning, sectoral and cluster development, public engagement and knowledge mobilization. In 2017 he was awarded the International Association of Business Communicators Award of Excellence for Organizational Leadership and the Economic Developers Association of Canada President’s Award for Contribution to the Economic Development Profession in Canada.


The Harris Centre

230 Elizabeth Ave, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1B 3X9

Postal Address: P.O. Box 4200, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1C 5S7

Tel: (709) 864-8000