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CEN news


Two major contracts for permafrost research
February 15, 2019

In Whitehorse, the Minister of Transport of Canada announced two permafrost research contracts led by, or involving, CEN researchers. Researcher Michel Allard (CEN-ULaval) will receive more than $339,000 in funding to evaluate the effectiveness of climate change adaptation techniques applied at the Iqaluit Airport, Nunavut, and to identify other hazards associated with permafrost degradation, and to ensure knowledge transfer to the Government of Nunavut and local airport managers. The second contract will be led by a team from Yukon College in partnership with the CEN team. Congratulations to the CEN researchers and research staff who are involved in this important research.

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Arctic Inspiration prize 2018
February 15, 2019
Photo: José Gérin-Lajoie / CEN

Nicodemus Jararuse, Nicodemus Jararuse Jr., Turiisia Emudluk, Tyler Ittulak, and Mark Annanack sorting benthos.

The CEN would like to congratulate the Youth Committee of the Kangiqsualujjuaq community and the IMALIRIJIIT team for the $466K Arctic Inspiration Award 2018 they won and which will enable youth from all Nunavik Inuit communities to participate in land-based resource and science camps in rapidly changing northern environments. The winning projects were announced at the ceremony, which was held for the first time in the North in Whitehorse on February 12th. CEN students, employees and research staff are part of this innovative team, including the two managers of the CEN station in Kangiqsualujjuaq, Eleonora Townley and Jeannie Annanack, as well as Xavier Dallaire, José Gérin-Lajoie and Gwyneth MacMillan. The CEN will continue to support the camps and initiatives from this extraordinary group of people. Well done, we are proud to work with you!


NUNAMI SUKUIJAINIQ (Science on the Land) arises from the community’s desire to start a new and different land-based Science Education Program. This program will be based on broader Arctic Ecology, including marine edible resources, lake ecology, Arctic char ecology, and archeology. These topics emerged during interactive consultations with the community focused on their research interests and needs.

NUNAMI SUKUIJAINIQ is a land-based and hands-on Science Education Program designed for Nunavik Youth. In this new program, youth from all Inuit communities in Nunavik will have the opportunity to participate in the Arctic Ecology land camps. NUNAMI SUKUIJAINIQ will also provide mentoring opportunities for Inuit youth already engaged in post-secondary Science programs across Inuit Nunangat (e.g. Environmental Technology Program at Arctic College, Iqaluit, Nunavut). Finally, short documentary films will be produced from this initiative to inspire other indigenous communities and regions.

The objectives of NUNAMI SUKUIJAINIQ are to stimulate and nurture the Nunavik Inuit Youth’s interest in natural sciences and science related careers. In this perspective, we will build an exciting Activity Program offering a good balance among Science, Tradition and Outdoor Adventure, with the participation of Elders and Natural Science researchers. Briefly, we want to make science attractive for Nunavik youth and help them develop valuable competencies for their future. Furthermore, we want to build a sustainable model-based on local entrepreneurship, growing northern expertise, and job creation. We will look for long-term funding with big foundations and northern institutions.

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Changes to the student committee
February 13, 2019

Following the elections held on Friday, February 8, 2019, during the annual conference of the Centre d'études nordiques, here are the members who will compose the Student Committee as of May 2019:

  • Karine Rioux, student in Geography and representative at Université de Montréal;
  • Vincent Sasseville, student in Applied Geomatics and representative at Université de Sherbrooke;
  • Lucas Deschamps, student in Biology and representative at Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières;
  • Xavier Dallaire, student in Biology and representative at Université Laval;
  • Marianne Valcourt, student in Biology and representative at Université Laval
  • Andréanne Beardsell, student in Biology and representative at Université du Québec à Rimouski;
  • Paola Ayala Borda, student in Biology and representative at Université du Québec à Chicoutimi.

Thank you to all the students for their participation in the meeting. The position of student representative at the Institut National de Recherche Scientifique is to be filled. The current members of the committee will remain in office until the end of April 2019. We would like to thank Edgardo Alvarado (INRS), Audrey LePogam (UQAR) and Yannick Seyer (ULaval) for their involvement on the committee and their many contributions to the life of the CEN.

We would like to remind our members that the CEN Student Scholarship applications ends on March 1, 2019.

Le Dévoué Comité Étudiant


CEN 2019 annual meeting, mission accomplished!
February 12, 2019
Photo: Marie-José Naud

From left to right: Richard Fortier (CEN director), Élise Imbeau, Alex Mavrovic, Vincent Sasseville, Myriam Labbé, Catherine Chagnon and Gilles Gauthier (CEN scientific director).

The CEN annual meeting was once again a great success this year with over 170 participants and a rich and diversified program including invited conferences on developing research collaborations and partnerships with Inuit communities and on new research platforms for work in coastal zones. We also had the opportunity to participate in a panel discussion on food and energy security in northern communities. Student members reported on the progress of their research in the form of oral presentations, elevator pitches and scientific posters. We would like to congratulate all participants, and highlight those who won awards for the quality of their communication.

  • Best Poster Award PhD - Vincent Sasseville (USherbrooke)
  • Best Poster Award MSc - Élise Imbeau (UQAC)
  • Best oral presentation award - Michaël Bonin (ULaval)
  • Best Elevator pitch Award - Alex Mavrovic (USherbrooke)
  • Sentinel North Award for Innovative Multidisciplinary Research - Catherine Chagnon (ULaval)
  • CREATE-BIOS2 Prize for quantitative research in biodiversity - Myriam Labbé (ULaval)

Congratulations to Héloïse Barbel for her distinction
February 12, 2019

Congratulations to Héloïse Barbel who received the distinction on the Honor Roll of the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies for the year 2018 as part of the Master's program in Geographical Sciences. She won the unanimity of the jury because of the excellent marks for her master's thesis.


A Global Study on Permafrost Warming
January 28, 2019
Photo: Samuel Gagnon

Mesuring station, Narsajuaq, Nunavik

A new comparative study, conducted by the international GTN-P permafrost network, including CEN researcher Michel Allard, shows that mean ground temperature has increased in all permafrost regions except sites in the eastern Canadian Arctic. This new study compiles time series of global permafrost temperature data measured since the International Polar Year (2007-2009) at depths of about 10-15 m to assess temperature changes in these environments. Between 2007 and 2016, permafrost temperatures increased by an average of 0.29 ± 0.12°C overall. These results are consistent with the trend of rising air temperatures in the Arctic. In contrast, in the discontinuous permafrost zone, the observed ground warming appears to be mainly caused by increased snow depth rather than rising air temperatures.

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Internships abroad for two CEN students
January 22, 2019

CEN congratulates the two recipients of the FRQNT international internship scholarship program for 2019. Doctoral student Bo Qu, from the Geography Department at Université de Montréal under the supervision of Oliver Sonnentag received a $5000 scholarship for a two-month internship in British Columbia. Rachel Guindon, Master's student in Biology at Université Laval under the supervision of Jean-Pierre Tremblay, received a $15000 scholarship to complete a six-month internship in Norway. Enjoy your stay abroad!

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