Canadian Ocean Science

The Canadian Consortium of Ocean Research Universities (CCORU) has asked the Council of Canadian Academies to undertake an expert assessment of ocean science, focusing on future opportunities and challenges for Canada and for our coasts.  This evidence-based assessment follows on the Council’s priority setting exercise and expert workshop report, 40 Priority Research Questions for Ocean Science in Canada.

Progress Report

The Expert Panel on Canadian Ocean Science held its fourth and final meeting in Ottawa on May 13th. Work is now under way to develop a final draft of the report for Panel sign-off. The report is expected to be released later this year.


The world’s oceans are undergoing unprecedented changes and are being stressed in numerous ways, which has profound implications for future development opportunities and also creates societal challenges. Ocean science problems are complex and addressing them will require a high degree of coordination among various scientific institutions and technology hubs. While Canada is internationally recognized for its excellence in ocean research and its leading role in international research collaboration[i], it is still essential to determine the required resources, research infrastructure and collaborative arrangements necessary to address future questions of ocean science.


What are Canada’s needs and capacities with regard to the major research questions in ocean science that would enable it to address Canadian ocean issues and issues relating to Canada’s coasts and enhance its leading role as an international partner in ocean science? 


  1. How do these capacities and needs relate to the varied dimensions of ocean research such as, the technological, economic, environmental, social, policy and governance aspects of this kind of research?
  2. What infrastructure does Canada have presently and what will it need to acquire in order to address the major ocean research questions with their varied dimensions?
  3. What are the arrangements and new innovative alignments among the stakeholders of ocean research (i.e., governments, universities, industries and communities) that could enable Canada to continue to address its ocean issues and enhance its leading role as an international partner in ocean science?

Expert Panel

The Expert Panel on Canadian Ocean Science is chaired by Dr. David Strangway O.C., FRSC, former President and CEO , Canada Foundation for Innovation. For a complete list of panel members visit the Expert Panel on Canadian Ocean Science page.

Members of the Expert Panel on Canadian Ocean Science
at their second panel meeting in Ottawa, ON.
Panel member Peter Herzig is not pictured in this photo.

For further information, please contact:

Stefan Jungcurt, Research Associate at 613-567-5000 ext. 262 or


[i] (Coward et al., 2000; Charles, 2001; for other examples of Canadian leadership and contributions, see: de Wit & Muir, 2010; AMAP, 2011; Greenan & Klymak, 2011; Picard-Aitken et al., 2011)


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