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About the Research

About the Research


Many First Nations and municipalities across Ontario have formed collaborative relationships to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes, such as improved service provision, or economic development. This research aims to explore factors influencing why these types of relationships emerge in some situations and not others. As a starting point, one relationship type of particular policy relevance will be explored: water sharing arrangements between municipalities and First Nation Bands.


On many First Nations’ reserves across Canada, lack of safe drinking water is a chronic problem. Researchers at the University of Guelph and Western University have received a SSHRC Insight Grant to study collaborative water arrangements between First Nations and municipalities in Ontario. This five-year $371,300 project is an interdisciplinary effort, involving a mix of quantitative and qualitative methods – including statistical analysis, and in-depth case studies. The central aim of this project is to identify the potential scope for water sharing in the Province, and factors influencing communities to choose to engage, or not engage, in these exchanges. Researchers will explore the potential for collaborative water arrangements between First Nations and municipalities in Ontario, and assess water sharing as one possible solution in the broader portfolio of solutions needed to address drinking water quality issues on reserves.

Project Information Handout:

Application Submitted to SSHRC:

Notice of Award from SSHRC:

To learn more about this research, use the sitemap provided below.



Click here for information about the research team, and team member bios. 

Click here to access publicly available project resources.

Click here to contact the research team. 

In the News:


Oneida Water: 'Would you want your parents to live like this?'
CBC News | Andrew Lupton
January 23rd, 2023

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