Vision for the Canadian Arctic Research Initiative
In its October 2007 Speech from the Throne, the Government of Canada committed itself to the construction of a world-class Arctic research station, as part of a larger northern strategy. Accordingly, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) hosted a Visioning Workshop to help define those priorities. Following this workshop, INAC asked the Council of Canadian Academies to provide an external perspective on the workshop’s findings.
The International Expert Panel on Science Priorities for the Canadian Arctic Research Initiative (CARI) concluded that the four science priorities recommended in the Visioning Workshop Report were sensible and appropriate directions for Canada. They did recommend, however, that an additional two priorities, “Observation and Monitoring” and “Technology,” be considered. Among their conclusions, the Panel determined that it is vital to recognize Canada’s international obligation to arctic science and that we must “seek synergy” by breaking down the silos of methodologies, disciplines, and stakeholder interests. The Panel also advised that the government “start now” to sustain momentum.
Following the Expert Panel’s report, the Government of Canada, in Budget 2009, allotted $87 million to the development of arctic initiatives and research.
The Panel [convened by the Council] will assess the extent to which proposed priorities articulate Canada’s global advantage in terms of Arctic science. Specifically, the Panel will be asked to consider the following questions:
- Do the science priorities express Canada’s distinct advantages in terms of Arctic science?
- Do the priorities address gaps and represent elements of Canada’s future Arctic science priorities, including key policy and regulatory needs?
- Do the science priorities take into account key international initiatives?
- How can the new Arctic Research Station contribute to achieving these priorities?
Report and related publications
- Vision for the Canadian Arctic Research Initiative: Assessing the Opportunities (the full report)
- Report in Focus (the abridged version)
- News Release
Expert Panel membership
The International Expert Panel on Science Priorities for the Canadian Arctic Research Initiative convened in July 2008 and was chaired by Elizabeth Dowdeswell, Former UN Under-Secretary General and Executive Director of UNEP, and Founding President of the Nuclear Waste Management Organization. For a complete list of panel members visit the International Expert Panel on Science Priorities for the Canadian Arctic Research Initiative Membership page.
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