The Knowledge Mobilization Working Group, based at the University of Winnipeg, is conducting research that explores modern media (such as video and social media) as a way to document, in Canada’s three coastal-ocean regions, different perspectives on the importance of oceans for community (such as food, culture, economy).
We are also actively supporting other OceanCanada working groups as they engage with coastal communities. We are also helping other research groups mobilize the insights and learning gathered at the local level by sharing this information with Canadians.
Our method is based on a participatory approach where residents of coastal communities are encouraged to voice their concerns and show their leadership. In addition to our formal SSHRC partners, the Heiltsuk Nation’s community of Bella Bella and the David Suzuki Foundation are informal associates of the KM Working Group.
Assessment of priorities and concerns from Canada’s three coastal-ocean regions
Harnessing of community priorities with OceanCanada research work
Development of new channels for communicating with Canadians
Building research capacity within Canada’s three coastal-ocean communities
During 2015/2016, the Knowledge Mobilization Working Group made substantial progress in integrating community-based research, multi-media deliverables, public outreach, and cross partnership organizing and communications. It operates at the local, regional, and national levels and has active partnerships with various working groups, universities, non-governmental organizations, and funding agencies. This year’s activities included: 1) a 30-minute version of the British Columbia climate change documentary, based on over 50 interviews with residents, scientists, policymakers, government officials, and business leaders; 2) fieldwork and film documentation by Hillary Beattie, University of Manitoba Master’s student, for her thesis entitled Socio-Ecological Systems, Cultural Revitalization and Traditional Ecological Knowledge in Heiltsuk Territory: A Case Study of Tribal Canoe Journeys; 3) community engagement in the Pacific region using multi-media tools. Similar work is planned for other regions in upcoming years, and regional videos will be weaved together into a larger, national-scale OCP documentary that will be a core product of OCP knowledge mobilization activities. In the fall of 2015, the Working Group began a scoping phase in the Arctic to explore opportunities for collaboration and research with communities in Nunavut.
In addition to these activities, in October 2015 Matt Carreau joined the Working Group to assist with OceanCanada communication, outreach, and coordination. He enhanced OCP’s website and social media presence, and coordinated newsletters, conferences, and other core OCP-related activities. Matt left OCP to pursue other ventures in the UK in August 2016. We wish him the best of luck!