Operational Plan 2022-23
Last year (2021-22) was an exciting year for the Canadian Mountain Network (CMN) as we began to see the outcomes and impacts of our work. In our third year of operations as a Network of Centres of Excellence (NCE) hosted at the University of Alberta, we continued to navigate the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, completed leadership transitions, began a new cycle of board recruitment, continued to implement our research, training and knowledge mobilization programs, improved engagement with our researchers, built new partnerships, and began to prepare for our post-NCE grant future, including submission of a $81MM Letter of Intent to the Government of Canada’s Strategic Science Fund that was supporting by a large and diverse national coalition of partners.
The CMN community continues to demonstrate compassion, creativity, and resilience, not only in making meaningful contributions to mountain peoples and places that are worth celebrating, but by demonstrating exceptional leadership in the development of the ethical braiding of Indigenous and Western knowledges. We have demonstrated how this approach leads to improved research outcomes to advance action and decision-making from local to international levels in areas of environmental, social, cultural and economic change.
As 2021-22 was the final year of CMN’s Initial Strategic Plan (2019-2022), our Board, its Committees, management, staff, researchers, and partners participated in exciting planning and visioning processes. CMN’s Strategic Plan for 2022-24 presents an exceptional vision for our future that builds on a strong foundation of environmental research in mountain systems and places. That foundation also includes our work in the ethical braiding of Indigenous and Western knowledges, as well as enabling Indigenous-led and co-led research that is addressing a significant gap in Canada’s research ecosystem. Recent events in Canada suggest that rarely in our history has the urgency been greater or the burden of responsibility heavier to ensure our decisions and actions serve the collective health and well-being of generations to come. The devastation of recent fires and floods have brought home the reality of our climate crisis and hundreds of communities across Canada have declared climate emergencies. Six years after the release of the Final Report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, the rediscovery of unmarked graves of children who died in the residential school system, which have been long known to Indigenous families and communities, served as a painful reminder of the devastation inflicted on Indigenous Peoples by governments and institutions, as well as the continued impacts of those actions. CMN’s work is contributing to Reconciliation through Research; a critically significant and important contribution on Canada’s path towards Truth and Reconciliation.
CMN’s mission for 2022-24 is to advance Reconciliation through Research by supporting the resilience and health of Canada’s mountain peoples and places through research partnerships based on Indigenous and Western ways of knowing that inform decision-making and action within and beyond mountain systems.
To deliver on this mission, CMN has a skilled and aligned management team, diverse and experienced Board of Directors and Committee Members, and many exciting programs that continue to grow in new directions. 2022-2023 will be a year of increasing impact and results, with some of our initial research projects coming to a close and our Knowledge Hubs moving into their first full year of operations. We expect to see significant benefits for the communities and decision makers that we serve as a result of this scaling up of activity.
The 2022-23 Annual Operational Plan is a governance best practice and a NCE program requirement. It has been designed to build from previous years and to improve the Board’s situational awareness and ability to connect strategy and operations. A review of the CMN’s progress in 2021-22 that provides additional context for our 2022-23 Operational Plan activities is presented in our 2021-22 Annual Report. In addition, the NCE Monitoring Committee’s Report Card for 2020-21, while lagging a year behind, also provided useful feedback and has informed this Plan.
The 2022-23 Operational Plan is presented including key activities by strategy, anticipated performance targets to be evaluated against, and the 2022-23 budget. The Operational Plan activities are based upon the 2022-24 Strategic Plan which is reflected in the planning tables herein as well as progress made towards key activities as reflected in the 2021-22 CMN Annual Report.
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