Op-eds for Policy

Date & Time

Monday, October 30, 2023
12:30 pm to 2:00 pm


Hybrid: UBC C.K. Choi Building (1855 West Mall) or Zoom

Offered by

UBC’s Centre for the Study of Democratic Institutions (CSDI), Knowledge Exchange Unit and Graduate Pathways to Success

Registration Closed / Past Event


Chris Tenove, Peg Fong, and Kshitij (KJ) Sharan will lead an 80-minute hybrid workshop on how to write op-eds and use them as policy advocacy tools. Op-eds are an important means to intervene in policy debates because they engage the public as well as policymakers. While the traditional op-ed appears in a newspaper, there is a range of venues to publish evidence-backed commentaries, from The Conversation to popular policy blogs.  We will discuss how to develop, pitch, and publish compelling op-eds that can advance your goals for knowledge mobilization or advocacy. The workshop is open to students, faculty, and staff at UBC.

Topics will include:

  • Benefits of publishing op-eds and commentaries
  • Identifying the right publication
  • Finding your voice
  • Writing a pitch to editors
  • Structure and evidence for op-eds
  • Writing tips

Workshops in this series, click here for more information on this series. Participants will benefit from attending multiple workshops in the series, but they can choose to attend only those that best fit their interests and availability.


Chris Tenove is the Director (interim) director of the University of British Columbia’s Centre for the Study of Democratic Institutions (CSDI), and a researcher and instructor at  the School of Public Policy and Global Affairs. He has published peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on the challenges that digital media pose to democracy and human rights, focusing on topics such as electoral disinformation, online harassment of politicians, and social media regulation. His policy reports on these topics include Trolled on the Campaign Trail: Online Incivility and Abuse in Canadian Politics (2020), Online Hate in the Pandemic (2022), and Not Just Words: How Reputational Attacks Harm Journalists and Undermine Press Freedom (2023). His peer-reviewed articles in journals such as International Journal of Press/Politics, Political Communication, and Political Research Quarterly. Before obtaining a PhD in Political Science, Chris worked in Canada and internationally as an award-winning journalist. His work has appeared in outlets including The Globe and Mail, The Tyee, Macleans’, The Walrus, The Conversation, Toronto Star, This American Life, and CBC’s The Current and Ideas.

Peg Fong teaches communications at Sauder and journalism at Langara College. She is currently the Vancouver writer for The Economist Magazine and she was the former western bureau chief for The Toronto Star and a staff reporter at The Vancouver Sun, The Globe and Mail and the CBC.  Her podcast Alone Together: A Curious Exploration of Loneliness ran for two seasons with interviews from 150 experts around the world and was downloaded in more than 30 countries. A Spanish version of the podcast Juntos En Soledad launches in November. The book, Alone Together, based on the research and interviews from the podcast, will be published in March 2024 by Orca Books.

Kshitij Sharan is the Head of Strategy and Operations at the Centre for the Study of Democratic Institutions (CSDI) at UBC. He has a Masters in Public Policy and Global Affairs from UBC and a BA in Economics and Political Science from McGill University. His work has ranged across sectors of education, water and sanitation, menstrual hygiene, gender equity, child protection and social entrepreneurship. He has been a founding member of medium to large scale non-profits and social enterprises in India, which has allowed him to engage deeply with decision-makers including ministers, parliamentarians, CEOs and communities. He was a founding member of one of India’s largest digital advocacy organizations, Global Citizen India, which  uses the collective voice of the youth to hold decision-makers accountable and accelerate the achievement of the SDGs. Kshitij has also managed a political campaign during the 2019 Indian National Election and led strategy for an anti-trafficking organization in India. He is a Khemka Fellow, a StartingBloc School of Social Innovation Fellow and a Fellow at the Global Social Change Leadership Institute at the Wagner School of Public Service, New York University. For more, see https://www.linkedin.com/in/kshitij-sharan-229ab9104/.

Registration Information

General registration opens on Monday, October 16th at 9 am.

Registration is open to current UBC graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, faculty members and staff. After registering, you will receive an automated confirmation email. If you experience any difficulty using the online registration tool, please e-mail us at graduate.pathways@ubc.ca.

Please email us if you are registered and are no longer able to attend this event.


If you have a disability or medical condition that may affect your full participation in the event, please email graduate.pathways@ubc.ca, 604-827-4578, well in advance of the event.