The Institute

The Canadian Rivers Institute (CRI) was founded in 2001 as a collaboration of researchers at the University of New Brunswick at both the Fredericton and Saint John campuses to develop the aquatic science needed to understand, protect, and sustain water resources for the region, nation, and the planet. Today, CRI has grown into a collaborative of hundreds of research associates, graduate students, and staff based at institutions across Canada and internationally working towards the vision of “making every river a healthy river."

Our Objective

The CRI involves academia, government, and industry, adopting a multidisciplinary and cross-sectoral approach to focus its research on the environmental consequences of increasing societal demands for water resources, while addressing the challenges of sustaining healthy aquatic ecosystems.  This innovative model merges fundamental and applied science, promoting rapid transfer of new knowledge to regulatory agencies to create effective public policy for improving society and the quality of life in Canada and abroad.

CRI scientists and their networks of research associates, graduate students and staff, support governments, businesses and communities in making smart, evidence-based decisions through high-impact research. Their work focuses on protecting and improving the health of rivers by conducting innovative science and translating it into the knowledge needed to create a paradigm shift in river management, by:

 Understanding how changes in water flow affect biological processes;

♦ Developing indicators that best measure biological and water quality changes in river systems; and

 Advancing monitoring practices to improve how aquatic ecosystems affected by human activities are manage


Hosted since its inception at the University of New Brunswick, CRI is composed of leading aquatic scientists based at:

  • Environment and Climate Change Canada

  • Institut nationale de la recherche scientifique, Université du Québec

  • Prothea Group, Italy

  • Okanagan College

  • University of Florida, USA

  • University of Guadalajara, Mexico

  • University of Lethbridge

  • University of McMaster

  • University of New Brunswick

  • University of Ontario Institute of Technology

  • University of Prince Edward Island

  • University of Saskatchewan

  • University of Waterloo

  • University of Wisconsin – Parkside, USA

  • Western University

  • Wilfrid Laurier University