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Working with AAROM departments

Please see below for some frequently asked questions by external partners looking to partner or enter into a contractual agreement with an AAROM department.

What is the AAROM program?                                             
The Aboriginal Aquatic Resource and Oceans Management (AAROM) program is a Fisheries and Oceans program that supports Indigenous aggregate organizations build and maintain scientific and technical capacity in fisheries, aquatic resources, and oceans management.
What is an AAROM department?                                       
The term “AAROM department” was developed to describe Indigenous aggregate organizations that are participants in the AAROM program. The term is used to promote and market the skills and expertise of the larger network of AAROM departments to external partners. Please note that there is no “one-size-fits-all” approach to AAROM departments and each has their own unique brand as many pre-existed the AAROM program. For example, some AAROM departments are part of a Tribal Council or Chiefs organization, whereas others are stand-alone organizations. For example, some AAROM departments are part of a Tribal Council or Chiefs organization, whereas others are stand-along organizations.
How do you procure AAROM department services? 
Many AAROM departments can also enter into contract arrangements with partners to provide technical services. In some cases, AAROM departments have established a separate corporate entity to complete consulting contracts. To learn more, reach out to your local AAROM department to see if this is a service they provide.

How do you partner with an AAROM departments?

The AAROM program funds the “core platform” which provides some basic travel dollars and salary for staff (e.g. Executive Director, Biologist, Administration Officer). This core platform varies between AAROM departments. Therefore, if you wish to partner with an AAROM department on a specific project, your organization should provide additional funding for administration, project staff, field work, research/analysis, engagement activities, and/or equipment depending on the project specific needs.

Before reaching out you should consider how you will work to co-develop the project design and/or specific tools with the AAROM department. For example, project governance charters, data management and information sharing agreements.

Specifically, entering into an information sharing agreement is critical to ensure that all partners have a clear understanding of what information and/or knowledge will be collected and how it will be shared amongst project partners. To learn more about Indigenous data governance and the principles of ownership, control, access, and possession (OCAP) please refer to the First Nations Information Governance Centre.

If you are going to reach out to an AAROM departments, ensure you consider the following questions:

Do you have funding to provide the AAROM department to support project activities?

What level of partnership are you seeking?

Do you already have clear outline of a project plan? Is there flexibility to alter this plan based on feedback from the AAROM department?

Have you determined what level of information and/or knowledge needs to be shared to have a successful project?


Contact the AAROM department directly to learn more about the creation of workplans.

Are AAROM departments consultative bodies/organizations?   

No, AAROM departments are not consultative bodies. However, some work to support their member nations and/or treaty tables as requested by Chief and Council.

Do AAROM departments participate on treaty tables or treaty negotiations?                                                                                                                   

The AAROM program does not provide funding support for treaty activities. Many AAROM departments have developed strong relationships with their member Communities and associated treaty tables. As they have developed technical skills and expertise in fisheries, aquatic and oceans science and management they are sometimes requested by their leadership to provide technical advice to the treaty tables and/or negotiations. However, other AAROM departments are not able to participate in consultation and negotiations process or provide input to their member treaty tables.

If you are interested in learning more about an AAROM department’s relationships with their local treaty tables or member Nations treaty negotiations you should reach out to the AAROM department’s Executive Director as not all AAROM departments are involved in these activities.