Monitoring and Research

Monitoring and research can provide us with information to better understand our water and aquatic ecosystems. Monitoring allows us to track and measure changes over time. Research can help us improve our understanding of aquatic ecosystems as a whole, and help us determine what causes changes. Good monitoring and research programs include traditional knowledge, local knowledge and western science. Often, research and monitoring work together – research can inform the development of monitoring programs, and monitoring can help researchers design studies.

It is important for all water partners to have the opportunity to participate in monitoring and research. Communities, in particular, must be involved because it is at the community level where the effects of changes in water and aquatic ecosystems are felt most.

Everyone should be able to access the results of water monitoring and research that have already been completed. The NWT Water Monitoring Inventory was developed to provide general information about all water quality and quantity monitoring programs in the NWT. The NWT Discovery Portal provides a central location for environmental monitoring knowledge in the NWT. Certain types of information, such as traditional knowledge, are shared according to established protocols and agreements. 

Aurora Research Institute and Environment and Natural Resources (ENR) have developed a package of templates to ensure research and monitoring results are shared in a meaningful way with NWT communities.  By following these prepared guides, researchers can be sure important information will not be overlooked and can tailor their communication to the needs of knowledge-users in the community. To access supporting templates guides for presenting scientific research or monitoring results to communities and other audiences, please click here

 For more information regarding monitoring and research please see:


What is Aquatic Ecosystem Health?

How Do We Measure Aquatic Ecosystem Health?

Who Does What?

Water-related Research

Community-based Monitoring Support and Programs

Access to Monitoring and Research