The Canadian Botanical Association

Short history

In 1964, following a report endorsed by the Royal Society of Canada, an organizational committee was convened to oversee the formation of the Canadian Botanical Association (CBA/ABC). The founding meeting was held at Carleton University, Ottawa, May 26-28, 1965, and was attended by 179 delegates. In 2014, CBA/ABC successfully continued under the Canada Not-for-Profit Corporations Act.

CBA/ABC is a founding member of Plant Canada, a Federation of Canadian Plant Science Societies formed in 2000 that brings together all involved in research, education and training in plant science and related disciplines in Canada.

CBA/ABC purposes

a) promoting botanical research and understanding by gathering, developing, and sharing botanical knowledge with academics, professionals, and lay people from all spheres of society;

b) providing inclusive forums for discussion of botanical teaching, research, outreach and knowledge regardless of origin, including through conferences, symposia, workshops, publications and activities with local communities;

c) providing awards for achievements in different fields of botany to students, professors, and amateur and professional botanists; and

d) to do all things that are incidental to the attainment of the above purposes.

Who we are

CBA/ABC serves as the national organization for botanists in Canada, including professional botanists at universities, colleges, schools, government and industry, as well as interested students, technicians and amateurs. It represents Canadian Botany and botanists in matters of local, national and international importance. Of special interest to the Association is the preservation of botanically significant natural areas. It offers a diverse and safe space to promote plant awareness in Canada. Although covering all botanical fields, the Association is organized around five sections: Ecology and Conservation, Mycology, Plant Development, Systematics Evolution and Biodiversity, and Teaching.

Throughout the Association’s existence, the Annual Meeting has been its major event and forum, providing opportunities to present papers and posters, to attend specially organized symposia, to participate in field trips to areas of botanical interest, and to meet with colleagues from all over Canada. The meetings are held generally at universities located throughout the country; from time to time they are organized jointly with other botanical-related societies from Canada but also from the United States.

The Association presents several awards at its Annual meeting to recognize outstanding contributions by both students and professional botanists.

An elected Board of Directors, comprised of eight Officers and eight Directors, are responsible for the operation of the Association and the organization of its activities. 

The CBA/ABC publishes a Bulletin that provides information on the Association’s activities and news about Canadian Botany and botanists. As of 2022, twelve editors and their helpers have produced 54 volumes of news about and for the membership.

Why become a member

Members receive the Bulletin three times a year, the only nation-wide publication providing current information on botany in Canada. Members attend, with a discount, transdisciplinary annual conferences, offering a platform to discuss topics closely-related to their research and workshops to develop and renew technical skills. Members can contribute not only to the formulation of position papers on matters of concern to Canadian botanists, but also to efforts furthering botanical research activities in Canada. Members are eligible to receive start-up funds for innovative projects; in addition, they have access to resources on teaching and research.  Undergraduate and graduate student members are offered travel awards for conferences, prizes and scholarships; and a platform for networking in a friendly environment.