SHIFT began over 30 years ago in the Dalhousie School of Planning. The original aim was to establish a forum where students, planners and the general public could discuss bold ideas and pressing issues in Halifax, Nova Scotia. 

Since then, Dalhousie has continuously hosted the free annual conference with support from government and community partners. For our 2024 conference, we are excited to announce an inaugural partnership with the Licensed Professional Planners of Nova Scotia (LPPANS). 

Over the years, SHIFT has explored a wide range of themes chosen for their relevance to the community and to keep exploring fresh concepts.  No matter the theme, SHIFT has always upheld its original vision: to offer a free, inclusive conference for anyone interested in the future of Halifax to learn, discuss and imagine. 

SHIFT was initially conceived and led by Dalhousie Professor Emeritus Frank Palermo and is currently organized by Masters of Planning students through a course instructed by Dal Planning alumni Gareth Wasylynko.