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CanGeoRef Launched September 15, 2011

More than 200,000 Canadian Geoscience references in one portal:

CanGeoRef is a subset of GeoRef (, the earth science reference database built and maintained by the American Geological Institute (AGI) which contains 3.2 million references. CanGeoRef will eventually include all Canadian Geoscience Literature published since the early 1800's.

Currently, CanGeoRef contains more than 200,000 references to Government (Federal and Provincial/Territorial) publications, peer reviewed journal articles, (chapters in) books, theses, and maps. A subscription to CanGeoRef may be as low as $65.- per year for an individual subscriber and is maximally $800.00 per year for a medium-sized company (see price list below).


"If you can't find it in GeoRef, you will have a hard time finding what you need" (François Goulet in CIM Magazine, November 2011). Click here for the whole article.


CanGeoRef is developed by CFES and AGI, made possible in part by a start-up grant from the Committee of Provincial and Territorial Geologists (CPTG, The Provinces and Territories and their clients stand to benefit most from CanGeoRef, because it is estimated that less than half of all their references are in GeoRef and most of these are more than 15 years old. Literature from four pilot provinces (Alberta, Ontario, Manitoba and Newfoundland/Labrador or British Columbia) is subject to data entry first and the literature data of the first three of these provinces will be just about up-to-date in CanGeoRef at the time of launch. We expect to have all Provincial and Territorial References up-to-date in CanGeoRef by late 2013.

In addtion to literature from provincial and territorial agencies, CanGeoRef will contain all publications of the Geological Survey of Canada and all peer reviewed literature pertaining to Canadian Geoscience. These references will be up-to-date at the time of launching CanGeoRef.

Eventually, CanGeoRef will also contain all Canadian Geoscience university theses (MSc and PhD) as well as provincial and territorial assessment reports.


English brochure Click here for downloadable brochures: Brochure Français



Why you need (to pay) for it

There is a common misperception that paying for a product such as CanGeoRef is no longer relevant because everything can be found in free internet based search engines. Unfortunately, the algorithms of such search engines are not objective. They show the user what they calculate that that user finds important, based on earlier searches by that same user. Such search engines thus personalizes the search process: different users get different results. Databases such as CanGeoRef, on the contrary, are truly objective: everyone searching this encyclopaedia for a certain keyword will be shown the same results.

CanGeoRef Steering Committee

The CanGeoRef Steering Committee advises CFES on technical and strategic issues (click here for its Terms of Reference). It meets by phone: twice a year in the month leading up to the CFES Council meeting to report to the Council meeting and incidentally as needed.


Carolyn Relf, CFES/FCST Board member for CanGeoRef (Director, Geological Survey of the Yukon), Whitehorse, YK


Laura Briggs, Information Literacy Consultant, Library Resource Centre, Conestoga College, Kitchener, ON

Jeanne Kimber, Head of Information and Records, Encana, Calgary, AB

Lori Janower, Mineral Resources Library of Manitoba Science, Technology Energy and Mines, Winnipeg, MB


CFES has contracted Purple Rock inc. of Victoria, BC for data entry