Ocean Connector Events


The Institute for Ocean Research Enterprise (IORE) hosts frequent Ocean Connector events offering thought-provoking discussion on current topics in ocean technology, science and research. Typically held on the last Thursday of each month, these events draw members from the industry, academic and government research communities. One of IORE’s main goals is to connect these groups and encourage collaboration and positive change.  Ocean Connector events are an opportunity to learn and network in a relaxed atmosphere that encourages interaction.

For the details of future events, visit our Ocean Connector blog frequently: oceanconnector.wordpress.com

To watch videos of past Ocean Connector events, visit our Youtube channel: IORE Youtube Channel

Presentations and discussions in 2017 include:


GSC’s Projects and Priorities: How technology used in labs and field equipment is evolving

For over thirty years, Gary Sonnichsen has worked for the Geological Survey of Canada – Atlantic (Natural Resources Canada) as a Marine Geologist and as a Research Manager. His research has focused on the Arctic, and the east coast offshore from Nova Scotia to Labrador. Gary manages a team of thirty marine geoscientists and technologists. Together they collect and analyze seabed information from all of Canada’s ocean territories.

Gary will provide an overview of the current projects and priorities of the Geological Survey of Canada (Natural Resources Canada) and how that’s driving technology in their labs and field equipment. He will explain how a federal research lab such as Natural Resources Canada works, how it has changed, and how it collaborates with industry and academia.

Join us on November 23 at The Wooden Monkey (40 Alderney Drive, Dartmouth, NS) from 4:00 – 6:00.

What is the Ocean Supercluster?

Jim Hanlon and Matt Hebb will lead a presentation and interactive discussion by key stakeholders in the Ocean SuperCluster.

Canada’s ocean companies are coming together in a collaboration of established and emerging sectors that is the first of its kind anywhere in the world.

Companies from sectors including marine renewable energy, fisheries, aquaculture, oil and gas, defence, shipbuilding, transportation, and ocean technology are building a partnership along with post-secondary institutions, entrepreneurs, and governments to accelerate technology solutions to big challenges in the ocean economy.

During this Ocean Connector, Special Event, Jim and Matt will be talking about the Ocean Supercluster Partnership, and answering questions such as:

  • Why an Ocean Supercluster?
  • What does it mean to me?
  • What is the Government of Canada’s Innovation Supercluster Initiative?

Join us on November 1, 2017 from 4:00pm to 6:00pm.


Trends in SR&ED

Greg MacDonald has extensive experience in technology, food and beverage, and biopharmaceutical industries. His consulting work for manufacturing companies reviewing processes, systems and procedures has helped his clients continue to grow and develop efficient and sustainable organizations.

Greg, a member of Grant Thornton LLP’s Tax Services, specializes in government tax credits and incentive processes, including the Scientific Research and Experimental Development (SR&ED) Tax Credit. As a professional engineer and business consultant, Greg’s experience and knowledge of key industries has helped clients source project funding and find opportunities for efficiencies and cost saving.


Learn more about the Ocean Frontier Institute

Dr. Wendy Watson-Wright, Chief Executive Officer of the Ocean Frontier Institute and Dr. Marlon R. Lewis, Professor Emeritus and Scientific Director of the Ocean Frontier Institute at Dalhousie University give an overview of what OFI is all about.

Headquartered at Dalhousie University in Halifax, and in partnership with Memorial University of Newfoundland, the University of Prince Edward Island, federal Canadian and provincial governments, industry and eight international institutes in five other countries, the OFI is an interdisciplinary transnational organization whose aim is the safe and sustainable development of the ocean frontier, with a focus on the Northwest Atlantic and Canadian Arctic gateway.


An Ocean of Opportunity

Andrew Stone, Director of Business Development at Genome Atlantic, and Dr. Marc Skinner, senior Marine Scientist at Stantec Consulting, discuss genomics and Environmental DNA (eDNA), and how they are used in ocean related projects.

Environmental DNA (eDNA) tools are being investigated as a means to address a broad array of environmental management applications in aquatic systems including but not limited to, detection of cryptic or rare species, population dynamics, wildlife forensics, as well as ecosystem health and community assessment. Genome Atlantic helps Atlantic Canada in multiple sectors including Aquaculture, Energy and Environment that intersect with the Ocean sector.


Update on COVE

Jim Hanlon (CEO, COVE) Sheila Paterson (COO, COVE), Shelley Hessian (Executive Director, Start-up Yard at COVE), and Peter Bigelow (Senior Planner, Waterfront Development Ltd.) are the brains and brawn behind COVE.

The Centre for Ocean Ventures and Entrepreneurship (COVE) is a collaborative facility for applied innovation in the ocean sector. This space will be home to local and global ocean technology businesses, start-ups, researchers, and marine-based and service businesses that support the ocean technology sector.

The programs, facilities and services offered through COVE are under development now through to April 2018, with the goal being to bring the ocean technology cluster together to advance Canada’s competitive position.


Going with the Flow – Use of drifters and drones in tidal energy applications

Greg Trowse is the founder of Luna Ocean Consulting Ltd. Many aspects of tidal energy work involve developing tools and techniques for working in high flow environment. When possible, Greg prefers to go with the flow and has led development and use of low profile drifters for mapping surface flow fields. Greg will present on the use of ‘Drones and Drifters’ in the context of tidal energy site assessment.


Intellectual Property – Legal and Industrial Perspectives

Stewart Hayne is an intellectual property lawyer at Cox & Palmer in Halifax. Stewart has worked in medical imaging software and in advanced research and development and manufacturing, and brings these perspectives to his practice. With real world examples, Stewart discussed industry-relevant mechanisms to identify, protect, and leverage your intellectual property.


Canada’s Ocean City – Promoting our ocean advantage

With a strategic location on North America’s east coast, the ocean-related focus of its universities and community college, and the depth of its science-based workforce, it’s no surprise Halifax is a world leader in ocean science and business. In 2015, the Ocean Sector Marketing Committee was formed, a collaborative initiative to brand and market Halifax’s ocean advantage and grow its ocean economy, leading to the creation of the “Canada’s Ocean City” brand which launched at last year’s Oceans Week.