Checklist for Conducting Research in Canada’s North

The steps outlined in this document are necessary for safe, respectful and successful northern research. Before you arrive to Canada’s North, read and work through this checklist. For more details and resources to facilitate your research, please visit Polar Knowledge Canada’s website.

Gather informationAt least one year prior to project
  • Local and regional authorities
    • I have identified what local and regional organizations should be engaged in my upcoming research and I have reached out to these organizations to involve them during the earliest stages of my project.
    • escalamation markInvolving local authorities from the nearest community to your field site in developing, planning and conducting your project is essential to responsible and respectful research in Canada’s North.
  • Permitting
    • I have investigated what regional research permits and licences I will require for my project.
    • question markFind out more about research permits in Canada’s North at Polar knowledge Canada’s website and connect with an established research station via the Canadian Network of Northern Research Operators (CNNRO) to gain tips for navigating region-specific permitting processes.
  • Connecting
    • I have reached out to an established research station through the CNNRO to discuss my research project, investigate the facility’s capabilities and assess equipment needs.
    • (If necessary) I have connected with the Polar Continental Shelf Program (PCSP) to submit an application for additional logistics support. The application period occurs in October of the year preceding the project.
  • Training and logistics
    • I have investigated what training and logistical support is needed to conduct research safely in remote sites.
    • question markConsult with your research station to confirm what certifications you will need prior to your arrival.
EngageThroughout project
  • Communities
    • I have continued to communicate with First Nations, Métis, Inuit and/or other northern communities closest to my field site to involve them in all stages of my project.
  • Canadian and international researchers
    • I have investigated whether there are already projects underway in Canada’s North that align with my research and, where possible, I will collaborate with my Canadian and international research counterparts.
Prepare3 months prior
  • Travel and equipment
    • I have health and air ambulance (MEDIVAC) insurance to cover medical emergencies.
    • (If applicable) I have obtained a valid entry document to travel to Canada and I am aware of Canadian border information pertaining to foreign-based research.
    • I have the necessary personal safety equipment needed.
    • escalamation markSpecialized equipment can be limited in remote northern communities and/or field sites and planning is required to ensure you have all the necessary protective equipment.
Follow-up6-12 months post
  • Permit reporting
    • I have met all reporting requirements outlined in my research permits.
  • Community follow-up
    • Based on the engagement strategy I developed with local authorities, I have actively engaged First Nations, Métis, Inuit and/or other northerners throughout my project and communicated my research results back to the communities.
Region Specific Research Information
This map shows the approximate extent of Canada’s northern regions
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