University of Manitoba - Natural Resources Institute - Director's Message
Director's Message
Welcome to the Natural Resources Institute and to our web site.

Throughout our history, students and faculty at the Natural Resources Institute (NRI) have dedicated themselves to making positive contributions to a wide variety of resources and environmental management issues and problems, all in attempts to ensure broader social-ecological sustainability. During 2019 we had an opportunity to reflect on our 50-year history while also looking forward to the future. The NRI was established in 1968, and we can now count over 1000 Masters and PhD graduates who have tackled many issues fundamental to sustainability at local, regional, national, and international levels. We have accomplished this in a student-focused way that strives to incorporate community-based, participatory and sound ecological approaches to research that are both inter and multi-disciplinary. Being a smaller unit, our strength has always been our people (students, alumni, donors, faculty and staff) and their commitment to excellence and to finding creative solutions to complex problems.

The problems we have taken on through our teaching and research have evolved and become even more complex as the world around us has changed. This is currently underscored by the effects of climate change on natural and human systems and the ease with which we can share ideas broadly, factual or not. Especially as we better understand the impacts we are having on the earth, the demand for creative thinking in reimaging our economies and the way we live, and doing so in a way that is learning focused and just, is only becoming more intense now. There are many avenues through which current students and faculty are and will continue to contribute to the new thinking needed – from the consideration of community-based resources management to new forms of governance and the fundamental shifts needed in natural resources and environmental policy and programs.

We sustain the research that we do through several multi-partner and other research grants. Continued success by our students and faculty members in winning research grant awards from the central granting agencies in Canada as well as from other provincial, national and international funding agencies reflects our commitment to research excellence. We all also work closely with an outstanding cadre of adjunct professors from other University of Manitoba departments and several Canadian and international institutions, as well as with government departments, non-governmental agencies and the private sector. Graduates of our programs are consistently successful in obtaining employment in the natural resources and environment fields in Manitoba, Canada and throughout the world, where they have made many significant contributions. If you wish to become part of this tradition, please take a look at the rest of this website and consider joining our vibrant and diverse cadre of graduate students. I look forward to answering questions you might have about the NRI, our programs and research activities.

John Sinclair
Professor and Director