Made up of over 200 member organizations, the COLC represents a community of diverse organizations, networks, institutions, and individuals. We work together to empower all Canadians—coastal and non-coastal—to better understand, value, and care for the ocean. We are focused on learning how to better support Canadians to develop the interest, awareness, and ability to become ocean stewards in their day-to-day lives and communities.

The COLC has three key objectives:

  1. Build a national ocean literacy strategy through regional consultation and engagement.
  2. Establish and support an active ocean literacy research and monitoring program for Canada.
  3. Strengthen ocean literacy initiatives and joint activities of COLC member organizations that promote broad public engagement across Canada.

Our Consultation and Engagement Plan

To accomplish our goals, we have launched our ”Consultation and Engagement Phase.” From 2019 through 2020, our research team will scan and review ocean-related documents, map ocean literacy across Canada, and survey Canadians about the ocean. The results of this collaborative work will inform the advancement of ocean literacy in Canada.

Date Action Item

July – August

Focused document review and pan-Canadian document scan


Ongoing document review and launch of Canadian Ocean Literacy Survey; Scan of publicly available data and informal conversations with key stakeholders for the ocean literacy map

October – December 

OL mapping survey, targeted interviews, and focus groups/sharing circles with organizational leaders for the ocean literacy map

January – February

Data analysis and synthesis of preliminary findings

March – April

Focus group/sharing circles with key stakeholders on preliminary regional findings, draft ocean literacy map, and recommendations


Regional reports submitted to National Coordinator


National round table discussion on findings across the regions and shaping of national ocean literacy strategy

June – Sept 

Drafting the national ocean literacy strategy and other outcome products

October – December

Validating and launching Canada’s Ocean Literacy Strategy for the 2021 UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development

Sharing the Results of Our Research

The results of our work will be used to create four knowledge products. The findings of the study will also be presented through various academic publications. The four products include:

  1. A full national ocean literacy strategy document
  2. A summary infographic of key strategy findings and recommendations
  3. An infographic of Canada’s ocean literacy map
  4. A summary of the Canadian Ocean Literacy Survey key findings

Once our study is complete, all knowledge products will be shared publicly on the COLC website and through social media (e.g., Facebook, Twitter). All research participants and COLC member organizations will receive our four knowledge products directly via email. To further promote this work, short videos of research findings, conference presentations, and media interviews will be created and shared with all Canadians.