Networks of Centres of Excellence of Canada
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$113.2 million for 2003-18
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Number of partners

Partner contributions
$190.2 million

Université Laval, Québec, Quebec

Scientific Director
Louis Fortier Louis Fortier

Board chair
Bernie Boucher Bernie Boucher,
President, JF Boucher Consulting Ltd.

Planning for a sustainable and prosperous Arctic

The opportunity

Climate change and modernization are rapidly transforming the Arctic and drawing increasing attention to the region’s global and geopolitical importance. Local communities, policymakers, regulators and industry need a solid foundation of science and traditional knowledge to develop community sustainability plans, protect human health and the environment, promote economic and social development, and strengthen Canadian sovereignty. Timely research will also inform Quebec’s “Plan Nord” and the 25-year Plan Nunavik, and support responsible Arctic resource development, safe Arctic shipping and sustainable circumpolar communities.

How ArcticNet is seizing the opportunity

ArcticNet represents Canada’s largest commitment to date to explore the social, economic and environmental impacts of climate change and modernization in the coastal Canadian Arctic. Over 135 researchers from 29 Canadian universities collaborate with federal, provincial and territorial agencies and departments, Inuit organizations and industry partners to conduct complex assessments of the regional impacts of climate change in the Canadian Arctic. This evidence translates into practical recommendations for minimizing negative impacts and maximizing benefits. ArcticNet’s more than 1,000 highly qualified personnel work with local partners who will put this research into practice.

Among the results

  • ArcticNet’s first two Integrated Regional Impact Studies (IRIS) have been published and include policy recommendations for improving the health and sustainability of people living in Nunavik, Nunatsiavut and the western and central Canadian Arctic. Priority areas in the different regions are addressed, including: human health; safety and security; transportation and infrastructure; preservation of culture; food security; and socio-economic development and resource exploitation.
  • The Arctic Council is using ArcticNet’s IRIS model to inform and shape its Adaptation Action for a Changing Arctic assessment, to be completed in 2017. It will create the first integrated picture of ongoing changes in the coastal Arctic.
  • ArcticNet has completed successful partnerships with Imperial Oil and BP in the Beaufort Sea, and, most recently, with Statoil Canada offshore Newfoundland and Labrador. These multi-stakeholder research collaborations guarantee that decisions about exploration drilling, environmental assessments and regulations are based on the best scientific information available.
  • ArcticNet leverages more than $2.5 in public and private sector funding for every $1 from the NCE. Industry, alone, has contributed more than $50 million. The Government of Canada and ArcticNet also share the costs of the network’s primary marine research platform, the CCGS Amundsen icebreaker.
  • ArcticNet’s Schools on Board outreach program has introduced over 100 secondary school students and teachers to Arctic marine science through hands-on participation in the annual research expedition on board the CCGS Amundsen. The Schools on Tundra program, an extension and complement to Schools on Board, is now immersing students in subarctic terrestrial science.

Connect with ArcticNet


Taking action now to safeguard Canada's Arctic
April 17, 2014
Climate change is rapidly transforming the Arctic and drawing increasing attention to the region’s global and geopolitical importance. Local communities, policymakers, regulators and industry need a solid foundation of science and traditional knowledge to address these challenges and take advantage of the opportunities. Read more
Building Canada's Strengths: Oceans R&D
April 17, 2014
Canada is a global steward of the sea, with three world-class science clusters (British Columbia, Quebec and Atlantic Canada) and the longest coastline in the world. A recent Council of Canadian Academies report concluded that coordination across jurisdictions and disciplines is critical to maintaining this leadership position. The NCE has been doing exactly that since funding the first national network in this sector in 2003. Read more
The NCE highlights the important contributions of the social sciences and humanities at Congress 2013
June 10, 2013
Research into human thought and behaviour is an essential part of successful innovation and addressing the complex challenges facing Canadians. Read more about how unique contributions from the social sciences and humanities help NCE-funded networks and centres address the full scope of their mandates. Read more
New evidence helps Canada prepare for a changing Arctic
April 19, 2013
The ArcticNet NCE’s newest Integrated Regional Impact Study will help officials in Nunavik and Nunatsiavut, and the federal government, develop informed policies to improve quality of life, safeguard the environment and facilitate sustainable development in a warming Arctic. Read more
Watch Video
Arctic Change 2014 - Day 5
December 16, 2014
Watch Video
Arctic Change 2014 - Day 4
December 16, 2014
Watch Video
Arctic Change 2014 - Day 3
December 16, 2014
Watch Video
Arctic Change 2014 - Day 1 and 2
December 16, 2014