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Workshop summary and gap analysis report: unifying groundwater science in southern Ontario

To inform program development, project collaboration and ensure alignment with client needs, a workshop was held on March 6th 2015 titled Unifying Groundwater Science in Southern Ontario. Attendance was solicited by email with approximately 150 invitations, and 74 attendees. The one-day
workshop was structured with two half-day sessions. The morning session focused on groundwater geoscience information gaps (GAPS), emerging from the Source Water Protection funding era of 2004-2015. The afternoon session focused on the need for data management unification and accessibility within
open government initiatives. To frame the discussions, 7 talks were presented in the morning and 5 in the afternoon by Ontario Ministry representatives, Conservation Authorities, Academia, Municipalities and the Geological Survey of Canada. This report synthesizes comments made during discussion
sessions by workshop participants, and provides a review of that feedback.
Workshop participants identified more than 30 groundwater geoscience GAPS and these have been summarized in 7 categories that represent key themes. The 7 categories are i) communications, ii) standards and protocols iii) hydro- and geo-chemistry, iv) surface water groundwater, v) geology and
hydrogeology, vi) climate change, and vii) data management and dissemination. Work is ongoing on many of the GAPS, and in numerous cases the GAP highlights the magnitude of geographic scale, the complexity of geological hydrogeological systems and the iterative research approach that is warranted.
As a first step in addressing the GAPs, three communications focused endeavours are under development comprising i) a monthly online WebEx conference presentation, ii) an annual winter workshop, and iii) an annual meeting in which these GAPS are re-visited and progress is evaluated.

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The Great Lakes - St. Lawrence Research Inventory is an
interactive, Internet-based, searchable database created as a tool to collect and disseminate
up-to-date information about research projects in the
Great Lakes - St. Lawrence Region.