Departmental Peformance Report 2013-14

Canadian Polar Commission

Strategic Outcome: Increased Canadian Polar Knowledge

Program: Knowledge Management and Communication

Description

The Canadian Polar Commission is Canada's national institution for furthering polar knowledge and awareness. It maintains and builds active knowledge networks, synthesizes polar knowledge to identify opportunities, issues and trends, and communicates polar knowledge, in the North and to all Canadians.

This strategic outcome creates the conditions for Canada to acquire the wide range of information needed for effective policy and research program development in the polar regions and to maintain Canada's position as a leading polar nation.

2013–2014 Budgetary Financial Resources (Dollars)

Main Estimates Planned Spending Total Authorities
Available for Use
Actual Spending
(Authorities used)
Difference
(Actual minus planned)
2,095,074 2,095,074 2,108,888 2,259,236 164,162

2013–2014 Human Resources (FTEs)

Planned Actual Difference
(Actual minus planned)
7.5 9.5 2.0

Performance Results

Expected Results Performance Indicators Targets Actual Results
The Commission facilitates Canada fully embracing its place as a polar nation Polar knowledge networks are maintained and enhanced Knowledge content of the Canadian Polar Commission website is current and accessible The Commission's website is fully compliant with current government standards and updated frequently. Knowledge content is also disseminated through the Polar Blog (in partnership with Canadian Geographic magazine) and the Polar Knowledge mobile application
Synthesis and analysis of priority polar issues are published One major analysis published annually The Commission completed the State of Northern Knowledge in Canada report, which analyses knowledge gains since International Polar Year 2007, to determine present research opportunities
Communications channels to disseminate polar knowledge to Canadians are strengthened Number of downloads of Canadian Polar Commission communications products doubles Downloads are up by a factor of 2.5 over the previous year. New communications channels include the Polar Blog, a Facebook page and the Polar Knowledge mobile application

Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned

All 2013–2014 targets were met, with the exception of the creation of a technical advisory committee on matters associated with polar knowledge and research, because of a Board of Directors decision not to proceed at this time.

  • The Commission organized discussions with stakeholders and decision-makers, including Northerners via the Commission's northern office, to help facilitate the use of polar knowledge to influence programs and policies for the benefit of Canadians. This contributed significantly to the State of Northern Knowledge in Canada report which analyses gains and gaps in northern knowledge since International Polar Year 2007–2008 to help determine current and future research opportunities.
  • Commission guidance and support allowed the leaders and membership of the Canadian Network of Northern Research Operators to incorporate as a non-profit organization, elect a slate of directors, initiate a strategic planning exercise and begin fundraising efforts.
  • The Commission supported Canadian work in the Sustaining Arctic Observing Networks (SAON) initiative, which promotes Arctic-wide observing activities and developed a partnership with the Association of Polar Early Career Scientists to disseminate the results. The Commission now represents Canada on the SAON International Executive Committee.
  • The Commission financially supported the participation of Canadian experts in International Arctic Science Committee working groups and participated actively during Arctic Science Summit Week 2013. The Commission reinvigorated the Canadian Committee on Antarctic Research (CCAR) and supports CCAR in developing a Canadian national Antarctic research program.
  • The Commission began administering the Northern Scientific Training Program, which this year distributed nearly $1 million in funding to 34 universities across the country to help support 378 students in northern field research projects.
  • The Commission communicated polar knowledge to Canadians via its website, the Polar Blog (in partnership with Canadian Geographic magazine and tapping into their large readership/viewership), its new Facebook page and the Polar Knowledge App mobile application. Downloads of polar knowledge material from the Commission website more than doubled.
  • The Commission's annual Northern Science Award, which recognizes a major contribution to northern knowledge, was presented to Dr. Gérard Duhaime by the Governor General, His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston.
  • The Commission facilitated Canadian expert input to a U.S. National Academies of Science study team developing a report on emerging research questions in the Arctic.
  • The Canadian Polar Commission Board determined that it was not necessary to establish a formal technical advisory committee at this time, as external advice can continue to be effectively sought on an ad-hoc basis.
  • The Commission organized and delivered four engagement workshops on its State of Northern Knowledge in Canada project. These involved officials from federal agencies and departments; academics and other experts; northerners and private sector representatives; and representatives from international missions in Ottawa.

Internal Services

Description

Internal Services are groups of related activities and resources that are administered to support the needs of programs and other corporate obligations of an organization. These groups are: Management and Oversight Services; Communications Services; Legal Services; Human Resources Management Services; Financial Management Services; Information Management Services; Information Technology Services; Real Property Services; Materiel Services; Acquisition Services; and Other Administrative Services. Internal Services include only those activities and resources that apply across an organization and not to those provided specifically to a program.

2013–2014 Budgetary Financial Resources (Dollars)

Main Estimates Planned Spending Total Authorities
Available for Use
Actual Spending
(Authorities used)
Difference
(Actual minus planned)
481,595 481,595 485,048 330,773 (150,822)

2013–2014 Human Resources (FTEs)

Planned Actual Difference
(Actual minus planned)
1.5 1.5 0