Our Governance Models

Through various models embedded within our Governance Framework, Steel River continues to explore new ways to reclaim, revitalize, and reaffirm the critical role Indigenous communities play in the advancement of industries across Canada.


The Collective Impact Model is a disciplined approach to multi-team collaboration and systems change that has proven to be highly effective at addressing an array of complex issues. This is done by understanding that a project is not just about enhancing the regional economy, but also by developing stronger social and educational circles with each individual.


Steel River uses this Model to holistically work with Indigenous communities for positive social and economic change. Through the development and execution of the Collective Impact Model, all participants are informed and involved throughout the life-cycle of the project. By identifying phases rather than a step-by-step process, it allows for accountability and structure in an organic and respectful process.


This CIM involves celebrating each other’s culture and strengths, learning from Traditional Knowledge Keepers, understanding barriers (current, residual, and systematic), engaging youth, combining resources, aiding in the development of immediate and long-term workforce planning, and supporting social, cultural, and entrepreneurial initiatives.


The model provides a framework for the organic creation of long-lasting meaningful connections, centered around shared values, common goals, and specific outcomes. Through the acts of authentic sharing, exploring, planning, and working together, the relationships deepen and become as unique as the communities with which they are fostered.


Early Meaningful Engagement and Accommodation

The past and current industry norm has been to engage Indigenous communities on projects after the announcement of the project, leaving a community behind on required due diligence and holistic community learning regarding the various impacts the project may have on their people. A community needs sufficient time to research and understand the impact of a project on their rights as outlined in Section 35 of the Canadian Constitution, including Aboriginal Treaty and/or Aboriginal Title impact evaluations. 


Invaluable time is lost due to the lack of early meaningful engagement prior to project announcements, leaving a community in a constant state of catch up and forcing reactive decision-making in lieu of, a proactive approach.  Without early engagement, a community may lack the time needed to delve into the project and act upon their best interests. This may include regulatory quasi-judicial and prosecutorial court challenges, civil disobedience, and other political actions as leadership would see fit to carry out.


Steel River looks to expand the engagement horizon of a project journey to proactively explore opportunities at a grassroots level and understand the potential short and long-term impacts on the effected territories and their people.  We aim for the early detection of project type, understanding of traditional territory effected, scope of opportunity, as well as engagement and accommodation for Indigenous communities. The Economic Synergy Model embeds respect for a community’s own unique history, beliefs, expertise, and traditional decision-making practices, which facilitates informed, holistic decisions on the cost/benefit of proposed projects and exploration of how the community wishes to be involved.


Steel River aspires to help transform the engagement process into a positive and proactive one where communities can maximum employment, fully understand opportunity scopes, enhance community awareness, and enrich community asset ownership.