Welcome to Next New Brunswick


It began with a conversation. In 2003 John McLaughlin, President of the University of New Brunswick, launched Next NB/Avenir NB, an ambitious initiative to encourage New Brunswickers to talk to each other about the future of their province. He invited them to address a simple but compelling question: What do we want of New Brunswick?

Between February 2004 and May 2005, Next NB/Avenir NB reached New Brunswickers, both near and far, through its public forums and its website. Journalist Lisa Hrabluk traveled around New Brunswick, talking and listening to its citizens. Those conversations, along with the work of UNB researchers, formed the basis for nine discussion papers that explored the major issues confronting New Brunswick. Next NB culminated in SeaChange/Métamorphose, a conference that brought together more than 200 of the province's most thoughtful and talented leaders from all walks of life.

At its heart, Next NB was about inspiring New Brunswickers to act and it has done that. Out of the initial two-year program, has been born:

  • 21inc., a network of emerging leaders comprised of members of the original 21 Leaders program that continue to speak out on behalf of positive, community-inspired change.
  • The New Brunswick Business Council, a body of New Brunswick's leading CEOs who are committed to leading efforts to make a difference.
  • St. Andrews Symposium, a small annual colloquium hosted by UNB President John McLaughlin, which continues the Next NB conversation by exploring aspects of culture and identity.
  • Changing New Brunswick was a series of four conversations organized as part of UNB’s 225th  anniversary activities. A continuation of the Next New Brunswick initiative begun by then-president John McLaughlin in 2004, the series focused on issues of major importance to the past, present and future of the province. Like the St. Andrews Symposium, the Changing New Brunswick Conversation series was funded by a bequest from alumnus J. William Andrews, who graduated from UNB in 1952 with a degree in economics.  A native of Milltown, N.B., Mr. Andrews died in 2005 leaving one-quarter of his estate to his alma mater.

John McLaughlin, President, University of New Brunswick:

" In this and virtually every other culture, a university represents knowledge and enlightenment. We are a repository for cultural values and we can be an instrument of reform. In our commitment to truth, we can and should challenge the status quo."