The Canadian Ocean Mapping, Research and Education Network (COMREN) is a national academic, and non-profit group in ocean and coastal mapping. COMREN leverages Canada’s ocean mapping research and education community to support a sustainable blue economy.

COMREN aims to develop research activities, achieve technology transfer to industry, and develop and run educational programs. It looks to operate in liaison with government agencies and international organizations, to increase Canada’s ocean and coastal mapping research, education capacity and presence, both domestically and internationally. Central to this is providing opportunities to train Highly Qualified Personnel (HQP) who can help advance ocean technologies and solve problems, both applied and theoretical, with hydrospatial science and the ideas of neighbouring disciplines. COMREN can ensure the connections and incentives needed for HQPs to effectively collaborate and innovate in Canada.

Ocean and coastal mapping data is one of the fundamental components of a hydrospatial (marine and freshwater spatial) data infrastructure. As such, COMREN works to form an essential foundation for marine and fresh water-related research and initiatives. Several issues are related to these hydrospatial data, namely: data collection coordination and diversification to update and improve seafloor maps, especially in challenging areas (coastal, Arctic, etc.); the development of standards for use and exchange of data, to promote data access in a secure manner depending on the uses (e.g. navigation); the development of new technologies and methodologies related to the current digital revolution (e.g. autonomous vehicle navigation, satellite-derived bathymetry, data processing, artificial intelligence).

Principal Investigators

Ian Church

Associate Professor
Ocean Mapping Group
Department of Geodesy and Geomatics Engineering
University of New Brunswick

Sylvie Daniel
Professor Département des sciences géomatiques Université Laval

Steering Committee

British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT)
Centre interdisciplinaire de développement en cartographie des océans (CIDCO)
Dalhousie University
Marine Institute (MI)
Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC)
University of New Brunswick (UNB)
University of Ottawa (uOttawa)
Université Laval
York University
Canadian Hydrographic Service (CHS)
Natural Resources Canada (NRCan)


Denis Hains
Strategic Advisor
Geneviève Béchard
Director General | Canadian Hydrographic Service | Ecosystems and Oceans Science Fisheries and Oceans Canada | Government of Canada

Communication Manager

Elaheh (Eli) Ekhveh