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Research Initiatives

The Trail Research Hub undertakes research, education, and outreach initiatives to support sustainable trail development, construction, and maintenance across Canada while establishing best practice guidelines for trails governance and management.

Research

The Trail Research Hub undertakes research initiatives to support sustainable trail development, construction, and maintenance across Canada and to establish best practice guidelines for trails governance and management.

As such, members of the Hub offer the following
Research Services:

Community-Based Research Facilitation
Study Design and Implementation

Data Collection and Analysis

Production of Academic Papers and Industry White Papers
Presentations of Research Findings

Current Research Initiatives

You can learn more about our current research projects and related initiatives below.

River

Grand Watershed Trail-Based Recreation and Tourism Project

Community-Based Research Project

The Grand Watershed Trails Network is a new trail development organization actively engaged in the design and development of a multi-use trail along the Grand River, encompassing a network of trails in the watershed.

 

The purpose of this study is to gauge regional businesses awareness of the Grand Watershed Trails Network and Ontario by Bike – Bike Friendly Business criteria, and the importance they place on trail-based recreation and tourism, including but not limited to cycling, hiking, and paddling.

Forest Path

Trails and Social Enterprise

Longitudinal
Research Project

The Trails and Social Enterprise Research Project is a longitudinal research project investigating how community-based trail organizations can function under a social enterprise and collective impact model.

 

This research seeks to identify key trends impacting trail use in Canada, and to determine what governance structures can best support and grow trails in communities across Canada as meaningful outdoor recreation and tourism resources.

River

Grand Watershed Trail-Based Recreation and Tourism Project

Community-Based Research Project

The Grand Watershed Trails Network is a new trail development organization actively engaged in the design and development of a multi-use trail along the Grand River, encompassing a network of trails in the watershed.

 

The purpose of this study is to gauge regional businesses awareness of the Grand Watershed Trails Network and Ontario by Bike – Bike Friendly Business criteria, and the importance they place on trail-based recreation and tourism, including but not limited to cycling, hiking, and paddling.

Past Research Initiatives

You can learn more about our past research projects and related initiatives below.

Biker Going Uphill

Blacksheep MBC - Thunder Bay Region Mountain Bike User Survey

Community-Based Research Project

The Blacksheep Mountain Bike Club Thunder Bay Region Mountain Bike User Survey is a joint collaboration between researchers affiliated with the Trail Research Hub, the University of Waterloo's Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies and Lakehead University's School of Outdoor Recreation, Parks and Tourism, and community partners, including the Blacksheep Mountain Bike Club.

Bridge into the Woods

Insuring Ontario's Trail Survey

Analytical Support for
Survey Research

In response to issues presented by members of the Ontario Trails Council’s Subcommittee on Trail Tourism in early 2021, the Ontario Trails Council designed and implemented the Insuring Ontario’s Trails Survey in partnership with the Trail Research Hub who provided analytical support for the survey. 

This survey aimed to better understand the current insurance acquisition and insurance policy parameter challenges being faced by trail organizations in Ontario as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and increasing policy and practice changes within the insurance sector observed over recent years.

Hiking Trail

Ontario Trails
ICD Projects

Joint Community-Based Research
Project and Educational Initiative

The Ontario Trails Integrated Curriculum Design (ICD) Projects are a series of joint community-based research projects and educational initiatives being undertaken by the University of Waterloo's Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies in partnership with the Ontario Trails Council and trail organizations across Ontario, including the Bruce TrailHastings Destination Trails, and the Hydrocut.

Research Publications

Publications arising from these collaborations, including academic papers, white papers, and other outputs (like Infographics, maps and audiovisual materials) created by members
of the Trail Research Hub will be available by clicking the button below
after they have been shared with community partners.

Mountains

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