October 20, 2016

Adaptation Practitioners Network Mapping Survey and Meeting

Throughout the summer of 2016, the Ontario Climate Consortium (OCC) and Clean Air Partnership (CAP) circulated a survey to a list of entities (academic, private, and NGO) working on adaptation in Ontario. The results of this survey were used to develop a network map of the organizations and conduct an initial analysis to gain a better understanding of the type of services being offered, the customers, geographic boundaries of services offered, and availability of the products generated.

The participating organizations were invited to participate at a meeting on September 26th, 2016 to further discuss collaboration. Who is involved? How do they collaborate? With whom do they collaborate? How can we work to forward our collective adaptation goals? What are the opportunities, overlaps and gaps for adaptation in Ontario? Is there willingness for more formal collaboration among adaptation practitioners? These were some of the questions that were raised at the Adaptation Practitioners Meeting, hosted by the OCC and CAP with support from the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario at the Ontario Investment and Trade Centre in Toronto.

About the Meeting

The meeting started off with an update from the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) on adaptation as well as a presentation from CAP and OCC on the results of the analysis from the survey and an online interactive network map. Following the presentations, participants were given a chance to break into smaller groups and share their initial thoughts on how this tool might be useful. The hands-on portion of the meeting followed the process outlined by an assessment tool focused on competitor collaboration prepared by Dr. Lori DiVito and Dr. Garima Sharma, from the Network for Business Sustainability at the Ivey Business School in Western University. Its purpose is to provide a research-based process to inform how a collaborative could be formed and how to get there. The workshop aimed to use this framework to better understand the potential practices and structure of a collaborative, while relating to the research for tips and collaboration best practices.

 What was the result of this activity?

The analysis of the survey revealed a complex set of collaborations and partnerships, which have taken place among these organizations. In order to better understand this data, and allow for the other entities to access it in a meaningful way, an interactive online network mapping tool was populated with the adaptation practitioners’ network information which is available here. While the levels of collaboration developed over the past decade are impressive, the meeting elucidated that more formal collaborative structures were desired by the vast majority of participants.

Where do we go from here?

The OCC and CAP are currently developing a proceedings report which summarizes the discussions that took place at the workshop on September 2016. Once the report is developed, it is anticipated that future initiatives will include a reflection of the results of this meeting and of the Ontario plan for adapting to climate change and becoming more resilient expected to be available in 2017.


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