About this database

The Aurora Research Institute (ARI) maintains a collection of scientific research licence information for studies conducted within the NWT. ARI has developed the NWT Research Database to make this research licensing data publicly available. We’re planning future iterations of this database which will include an expanding scope of research content, such as information from our annual compendium publication which includes summaries from Fisheries and Oceans Canada (fisheries research summaries), Wildlife Division of the Government of the Northwest Territories – Department of Environment and Natural Resources (wildlife research summaries) and the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre (archaeological research summaries).

This database is a compilation of license information from various processes that have been in place for administering the NWT Scientists Act since 1974. In this database we’ve made records available from present back to 1974 and we’re currently processing to make available all licences back to 1954:

  • up to 1974 - the Federal Departments responsible for coordinating the “Scientists and Explorers Ordinances” the precursor to the scientific research licence has been:
    • 1953 – 1966: the Department of Northern Affairs and National Resources
    • 1966 – 1974: the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (DIAND)
  • 1974 – 1996: “Oracle” database
  • 1996 – April 18, 2005: “Approach” Database
  • April 18, 2005 – Present: Portal to Online Licence Applications for Research (POLAR)

Significant work has been required to bring this data into one database, as such, you may find examples of human error; if so, we ask that you provide the details of the error within this database so that we can effectively addressed as required.

Research data has also been influenced by a number of variables including geopolitical boundaries associated with aboriginal land claim and self-government agreements, new government infrastructure and devolution decisions relating to research (mainly federal and territorial), and all associated revisions to the review process for research to ensure compliance with regulations. Some examples of review process revisions are the incorporation of the ethical principles outlined in the 1st and 2nd versions of the Tri-Council Policy Statement and the facilitation of aboriginal government consultation as required for research projects set out by relevant land claim agreements.

The initial concept leading to the development of this public database was for use as a resource during academic literature review to minimize duplication of research effort, to assist in identifying knowledge gaps and to provide a venue for researchers to share research project results with NWT residents, and aboriginal, municipal governments. As we anticipate the use of this database may extend beyond the initial concept, release of future versions will be iterative and is designed to accommodate additional data sets. With this in mind, we welcome your feedback upon using this database.