proposals designed to fill those gaps.  Participation with the
Research Inventory has for the most part always been
voluntary; however some granting organizations have
Now that improvements to the inventory are in place, the
challenge is to attract a high level of participation from
begun to require participation with the Research Inventory
research organizations throughout the basin.  Researchers
as a condition of the grant.  This tie to funding provides a
entering data on a typical new project will find that it
strong incentive to participate and is seen as a very positive
step forward.  The Council also recognizes that researcher’s
usually takes no more than approximately 10 to 20 minutes
time is at a high premium, that most organizations have in-
and that existing projects can be updated in less than five
minutes.  There are currently 570 projects entered in the
house databases that require periodic data input and that
inventory.  Efforts by the Council to compare data entered
researchers would appreciate only being required to enter
in the inventory with that identified on agency web sites
project data once.  Accordingly, the Council is working in
cooperation with Canada’s National Water Research
indicates that this may represent only about half of the
Institute, the Great Lakes Commission and other organiza-
projects currently underway.  Consequently, the distribu-
tion of projects in the inventory at this time can only be
tions to identify ways to share data and link databases in
regarded as an indicator of activity and not a precise
order to reduce the need for duplicate entries.
measure.  In order to be a true “inventory” and reach its full
potential, the Council must press for full participation.
Discussions with managers and researchers indicate that
most recognize the importance of a research inventory for
The Council recommends the following to the IJC:
the effective management of resources, however three
obstacles have been identified that must be overcome in
Recommend to the Parties that organizations
order to improve participation.
granting funds for Great Lakes research be
encouraged to routinely utilize the Great Lakes –
the voluntary nature of the inventory;
St. Lawrence Research Inventory as a tool to
the lack of incentives; and
identify gaps in current Great Lakes research and
resource limitations.
that researchers/managers be provided with
incentives to participate.
To overcome these obstacles the Council intends to actively
promote the inventory and increase awareness about its
For more information regarding the Great Lakes – St.
value as a tool to effectively compete for and manage
Lawrence Research Inventory, please visit our web site by
research funds.  The Research Inventory can reveal gaps in
selecting the link on
current research and lend strong support for research