Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada
Symbol of the Government of Canada

Common menu bar links

Canadian Conservation Institute

The Canadian Conservation Institute (CCI) functions as a special operating agency within the Department of Canadian Heritage. The Institute was created in 1972 to promote the proper care and preservation of Canada’s cultural heritage and to advance the practice, science, and technology of conservation. CCI has worked closely with hundreds of museums, art galleries, academic institutions, and other heritage organizations to help them preserve their collections.

CCI has played an important role in assessing and developing the processes and materials used in conservation. Recognized as a world leader in the area of preventive conservation and risk assessment, the Institute has developed a comprehensive framework for preserving museum collections. CCI is also known for its research on artists’ materials, in particular those of twentieth-century Canadian artists, and on archaeological materials. With a staff of about 80, the Institute has treated more than 13,000 objects for the heritage community, has published hundreds of scientific papers, and has distributed in excess of one million publications. The Institute responds to at least 2,000 requests for assistance annually. Working together in well-equipped, fully secure, climate-controlled laboratories, conservators, chemists, engineers, biologists, and other professionals handle projects ranging from information inquiries to complex treatments and research.

From leading-edge research to innovative approaches, the CCI is recognized as a pioneer in the conservation of cultural heritage.

Research, Services and Training

Fields of Research

Conservation Research

  • preventive conservation and agents of deterioration (such as pollutants, temperature, relative humidity, pests, and physical forces such as shock and vibration)
  • risk assessment
  • transport of artifacts
  • iron gall ink studies
  • microfading testing
  • paper permanence
  • adhesive
  • metals
  • modern media
  • enzyme applications and water purification systems for paper and textiles
  • aqueous deacidification of paper and textiles
  • mass deacidification of library materials
  • detergents
  • stain removals for textiles
  • plastics and polymers
  • analytical technique development for fibrous proteins
  • collagenous materials (skin and semi-tanned leather materials, parchment) and mammalian history specimens

Analytical Research Laboratory

  • artists’ materials (such as pigments, dyes and colourants, binding medium, and coatings)
  • archaeological materials (such as metal, glass, amber)
  • scientific examination of museum objects
  • archaeometry
  • analytical technique development (for techniques such as Raman spectroscopy, Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy, pyrolysis-gas chromatography-mass spectrometry, x-ray fluorescence, x-ray diffraction, scanning electron microscopy, light microscopy, radiography, and photography)
  • pesticides in museum collections


Stephanie Vuicic
Canadian Conservation Institute
Tel.: 613-998-3721
Fax: 613-998-4721
E-mail :

Canadian Conservation Institute
1030 Innes Road
Ottawa, Ontario
K1B 4S7