Our Work


The Nature Foundation focuses on creating major impacts by inspiring investments for bold projects that support a better understanding of the natural world, and sustainable future for our planet.

Centre for Arctic Knowledge and Exploration

With a century-long history of Arctic involvement, much of the museum’s research and is dedicated to the Arctic. The museum’s collection and science expertise form the foundation of the Arctic gallery and programs.

The Centre is home to world renowned researchers and collections specialists with expertise in biological and mineral diversity. Leading research programs and collaborating with international universities, museums, and independent research institutes, CAKE researchers generate new scientific knowledge and collect new specimens to add to the museum’s collection each year.

These specimens advance Arctic exploration, education, research, and discovery that is critical to our planet’s future.

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The Arctic is home to many different types of flora and fauna
Senior  research scientists working with the next generation.

National Scientific Training Program

An integral part of the global scientific community, the museum has a century-long history of conducting and facilitating scientific research. It has expertise in botany, mineral sciences, paleontology, zoology and advanced collection management and preservation techniques.

The museum’s national natural science collection of over 14.6 million natural history specimens forms the foundation of the museum’s permanent gallery space, educational offerings, and research programs.

The museum also offers Canada’s one-of-a-kind Scientific Training Program which provides financial and experiential opportunities to students, visiting scientists and staff. This program helps to nurture a future generation of highly qualified professionals with collection-based research and curation experience and first-hand knowledge of the important and central role natural history museums play in understanding our rapidly changing planet.

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Nature Education

A society disconnected from nature will face challenges.

Nature education programs at the Canadian Museum of Nature are inspiring Canada’s future stewards of our natural world. Through our programs children are encouraged to see themselves as scientists, guardians of nature, and leaders.  

Our programming inspires science literacy, empowers children to consider a career in science, natural history, environmental stewardship. By fostering respect for nature through greater understanding and appreciation, future generations will approach nature and the environment through a new lens that promotes understanding of environmental issues, and natural science concepts and methods through experiential learning.  

With limited opportunities to connect with the natural environment, many children are suffering from what Richard Louv calls “nature-deficit disorder”. We know many children lack an understanding of nature and science. We invite investments that will take help us change the current reality.

Discover Nature EDUCATION
Children engaged in Nature Education programming at the Canadian Museum of Nature.
Carletonite, one of 69 new mineral species discovered at Mont Saint-Hilaire. (6 x 9 cm. CMNMC 87519) Photo credit: G. Haineault

Gilles Haineault Mont Saint-Hilaire Mineral Collection

The Foundation is supporting the museum’s recent acquisition of the world’s best collection of minerals from Mont Saint-Hilaire in Quebec. More than 1,000 of the specimens have been designated of “national importance” by the Canadian Cultural Property Export Review Board.

The minerals were amassed over decades by Gilles Haineault, a passionate mineral collector from Beloeil, Quebec. Mont Saint-Hilaire is one of the most famous mineralogical environments in the world, rich in rare elements that hold immense research value.

The collection will bring fresh insights about the Earth’s structure, reveal new mineral species, inspire and train future earth scientists, and be used to support better understanding of rare-element natural resources, and mineral literacy.


The world’s environmental challenges have never been greater or more complex.

Wildlife populations have declined by 68 percent in the last 45 years.

Natural systems essential to our survival are under threat.

Individuals, corporations and government must work together to foster solutions, by investing in nature for discovery science research and education.

Why invest?

The Canadian Museum of Nature is a recognized and an authoritative voice, whose basis in science informs a fact-based understanding of the natural world.