Trained at Université Laval (B.Sc. 1976; M.Sc. 1979) and McGill University (Ph.D. 1983), a NATO postdoctoral fellow (Plymouth, UK 1984-1985) and Professor at Université Laval since 1989, Louis Fortier studies zooplankton and marine fish population dynamics. In 2001, he created Québec-Océan, a multi-institution research centre that coordinates the efforts of oceanographers based in Quebec?s universities and government laboratories. He holds the Canada Research Chair on the response of arctic marine ecosystems to climate warming. He sits on the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada since 2005. An indefatigable promoter of a multidisciplinary and cross-sectorial approach to the ecosystem-level concerns raised by the warming of the Arctic, Louis Fortier has led the Canadian participation to several international programs such as the Saroma-Resolute Study (SARES) with Japan and the Northeast Water Polynya Study (NEW) with Germany. Since 1997, he spearheaded the NOW (International North Water Polynya Study) and CASES (Canadian Arctic Shelf Exchange Study) NSERC Research Networks, two highly successful research endeavors of international magnitude on the response of the Arctic Ocean to global climate change. Louis Fortier is also heading the pan-Canadian consortium of Arctic specialists that received in 2002 a $27.5M grant from the International Joint Venture Fund of the Canada Foundation for Innovation to retrofit the Amundsen, Canada?s dedicated research icebreaker. Equipped with state-of-the-art scientific instrumentation and developing 14000 HP, the 100-m long icebreaker was inaugurated in 2003. Hosted by Université Laval and managed by the Canadian Coast Guard, this national infrastructure has enabled Canada to rebuild its leadership in the international study of its Arctic seas and territories. Under Fortier?s leadership, Canada?s best arctic specialists in the natural, social and health sciences have founded ArcticNet which aims to anticipate the impacts of climate warming and modernization in the Arctic on the health and economy of northern communities and on the economy of Canada in general. The Network contributes to the formulation of policies and adaptation strategies in a diverse sectors including for example marine and terrestrial ecosystem changes in the Arctic, the vulnerability of northern populations to catastrophic events, the adaptation of human health systems, the preservation of key animal species; the opening of the Northwest Passage to traffic, and Canadian sovereignty in the Arctic. « Scientifique de l?Année 2004 » (Radio-Canada) and « Personnalité scientifique de 2005 » (La Presse and Radio-Canada). Grand Diplomé and Gloire de l?Escolle Medal of the Alumni Association of Université Laval 2006. Officer of the Order of Canada 2007. Honorary Ph.D., University of Manitoba 2007. Officier de l?Ordre National du Québec 2008. Personnalité scientifique de 2008 (Le Soleil and Radio-Canada). Stefansson Medal of the Explorers Club 2009. Prix Armand-Frappier du Québec 2010 for Excellence in Research and Research Development. Garfield Weston Family Prize for Lifetime Achievement in Northern Research 2012. Timothy R. Parsons Award for excellence in Ocean Sciences 2012. Governor General Northern Medal 2013.
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