MI Signs New Research Focused MOU with Nunavut Arctic College
Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Pictured left to right: The Honourable Keith Hutchings, Minister of Municipal and Intergovernmental Affairs, Government of Newfoundland and Labrador; Glenn Blackwood, vice-president, Memorial University (Marine Institute); Mary Ellen Thomas, Acting President, Nunavut Arctic College; and The Honourable Peter Taptuna, Premier of Nunavut.

The Fisheries and Marine Institute (MI) has signed a new memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Nunavut Arctic College (NAC) which focuses on collaborative research in the North. Building on an existing 20 year-old training relationship, the new MOU includes research in the areas of fisheries, marine, safety and ocean technology.

“MI has a strong working relationship with NAC and we have seen tremendous success in fisheries and marine-related training and education in the North over the past 20 years,” said Glenn Blackwood, vice-president, Memorial University (Marine Institute). “We look forward to combining forces on important research which will provide new insight into areas such as future fisheries and sustainability.”

MI’s current research work in the North includes a three-year program by Dr. Scott Grant in partnership with the Nunavut Offshore Allocations Holders Association to develop new fishing gear and strategies. Dr. Grant is also examining the bycatch of porcupine crab in the turbot gillnet fishery.

In addition, MI’s Centre for Sustainable Aquatic Resources (CSAR) has completed 26 projects in the area since 2003, predominately related to fishery resources assessments such as new and emerging fisheries. MI’s Centre for Fisheries Ecosystems Research (CFER) is also completing exploratory fisheries and ecosystem surveys.

Currently, MI delivers nearly 100 percent of the fisheries and marine training in Nunavut which is funded and coordinated by the Nunavut Fisheries and Marine Training Consortium. The institute’s office is located in Iqaluit and provides a home base for one full-time employee and as many as six instructors during peak training season. Each year, MI provides training to nearly 300 Inuit beneficiaries.

The MOU, signed in late September is in effect for five years. It brings together MI’s ongoing applied research and development activities in the area and NAC’s research and development capacity through the Nunavut Research Institute.