1. General

The ECOP Ocean Decade Photo Competition (“the Competition”) is governed by these Rules and Regulations. By entering the Competition, you agree to be bound by these Rules and Regulations.

2. Sponsors

The sponsors (“Competition Sponsors”) are Canadian Geographic Enterprises (50 Sussex Drive, Ottawa, ON, K1M 2K1), ECOP Canada (Tula Foundation P.O. Box 25039, Campbell River, BC V9W 0B7 Canada ) and the SOI Foundation (1740 Chem. Pink, Gatineau, QC J9J 3N7 ).

3. Start/End Dates

The Competition starts at 12 p.m. Eastern Time on June 8, 2023 and ends at 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on November 24, 2023.

4. Eligibility

The Competition is open to residents of Canada who identify as Early Career Ocean Professionals. An ECOP is a person who self-identifies as being early in their career (10 years or less of professional experience) within any field related to the ocean (not only employed/paid positions). The following persons are not eligible to enter the Competition or win a Prize: employees, officers, directors or representatives of the Competition Sponsors or any of the Competition Sponsors’ subsidiaries, affiliates, and agencies; competition judges; and the parents, siblings, children, and persons domiciled with such individuals as listed above.

Entrants are not eligible to win more than one Prize.

5. Photographic Entries

All photographs entered in the Competition must be of Canadian content (i.e. taken in Canada and relating to Canada). Photographic entries must be original material and must not have been a winner in any other national Competition.

All entries are intended for the general public. Entrants are fully responsible for the photographs they submit. The Competition Sponsors will not accept photographic entries that are offensive and reserve the right to disqualify, at their sole discretion, any photographic entries that contain, for example, racist, hateful, sexist, homophobic or pornographic content.

Photographic entries must not have been published or accepted for publication by a national magazine or newspaper. Photographic entries that have been previously published online on, for example, personal websites, blogs or social media, are not considered published for the purpose of this Competition. Judges will require the publication history of all photos being considered in the final stages of judging and reserve the right to disqualify photos based on their publication history.

All photographic entries must be submitted electronically as .jpg files through the website of the Competition, Digital files should be at least 1,000 pixels wide for a horizontal image or 1,000 pixels tall for a vertical image at 72 dpi. Content alteration of digital files is not acceptable. Cropping of photographs and tonal or colour corrections are permitted.

Entrants must be able to provide a high-resolution version of each photographic entry (uncompressed TIFF or maximum quality JPEG, Grayscale or Colour (RGB), minimum 4,000 pixels on the longest side). The Competition Sponsors may require a high-resolution file for any photograph selected as a winning entry. Entrants who fail to provide a high-resolution file within the time period set by the Competition Sponsors (not to exceed one week following notification) will forfeit the prize and an alternate winner will be selected by the judges. In such a case, no substitute or alternate prizes will be awarded.

6. Photograph Categories

Photographs may be entered into the four categories described below:

The Blue Future

The Sustainable Blue Economy includes activities related to the ocean, freshwater and the cryosphere that provide social, cultural, ecological, and economic benefits for current and future generations. Photos entered into this category should show a diversity of ocean careers, with a focus on people who work in or with the ocean.

Unexpected Encounters

Canada is bordered by three oceans, each with its own unique species, ecosystems and natural phenomena. Photos submitted to this category should show amazing marine landscapes or wildlife encounters.

Ocean Solutions

How do you engage and inspire people with the ocean? Photos entered into this category should show ways that people or communities are helping to change society's relationship with the ocean, which is the overarching challenge of the UN Ocean Decade (2021-2030). Learn more here.

“The things we do for the ocean”

Working on the ocean is not always glamorous; show us the gross, funny or hardcore realities that are part of life in and on the ocean. If only a photo could capture the smell…

Grand Prize

One outstanding ECOP will be selected from among all eligible entrants to receive the grand prize: an invitation to participate in a Students on Ice expedition in 2024 as an expedition photographer.

Photos must be uploaded to the appropriate category. Judges reserve the right to place the entry in an appropriate category or remove a photo from the Competition should it not be suitable for the category to which it was submitted. Photographs that are removed from the Competition are not eligible for a Prize. Photographs placed in another category are only eligible to win a Prize in the category into which the entry has been placed.

7. Publication

Winners’ names and photographs may be published in Canadian Geographic magazine and will appear at They will also appear on the ECOP Programme webpages, social media and promotional materials.

The Competition Sponsors reserve the non-exclusive right to publish any entry and/or use any entry in their promotional material during or after the Competition without further compensation to the entrants. Promotional material shall include without limitation any print or electronic advertising or marketing material such as posters, online images, newspaper ads, television ads, e-mails and social media content. The photographer will always be credited.

8. Copyright

Photographic entries must not infringe upon or violate any laws or any third party rights, including, but not limited to copyright, patent, trademark, trade secret or other proprietary rights and must not constitute material that would be considered libeling, defamatory, or a privacy violation.

Entrants must obtain all necessary permissions, licenses, clearances, releases, waivers of moral rights and other approvals from third parties (including but not limited to all copyright holders and all individuals appearing in the submission), necessary to use the photographic entry, in whole or in part, in any way, including to reproduce, make derivatives, edit, modify, translate, distribute, transmit, publish, license and broadcast the photographic entry worldwide, by any means, without limitation. Any and all such permissions, licenses, clearances, releases, waivers of moral rights and approvals must be included.

The owner of a photographic entry retains ownership over the photograph. Each entrant (and/or his/her/their parent or guardian) irrevocably and in perpetuity grants the Competition Sponsors a world-wide, royalty-free, irrevocable and non-exclusive right and license to use, copy, adapt, transmit, communicate, publicly display and perform, distribute and create compilations and derivative works or merchandise from the photographic entity to promote the Competition Sponsor.

Each entrant (and/or his/her/their parent or guardian) represents and warrants that he/she/they have the right to grant the license set out above.

9. Selection of Winners

All winners will be selected on the basis of skill as determined by a panel of Competition judges. This Competition is based on photography skills alone and not subject to random draw or any other element of chance. The winners of the prizes will be chosen and evaluated based on the following judging criteria: composition, content/originality, technical quality and visual impact.

The winners will be notified by email by 5 p.m. ET on December 8, 2023.

All prizes will be delivered to the winners by mail. All decisions of the Competition judges are final.

10. Chances of Winning

The chances of winning a Prize will depend on the number of eligible photographs received and the evaluation of the photographs by the panel of judges.

11. Technical

The Competition Sponsors are excluded from all liability for any personal injury, loss or damage of whatever kind (including loss of data) caused directly or indirectly, in whole or in part, from uploading photographic entries and material to the Competition website. The Competition Sponsors are not responsible for any failure of the Competition website during the Competition, problems or technical malfunctions of computer online systems, servers, access providers, computer equipment, software or any e-mail, online or internet entry lost due to technical problems or traffic congestion on the internet or at any website or any combination thereof, including any injury or damage to an entrant’s or any other person’s computer or property related to or resulting from uploading any photographic entry to the Competition.

12. Cancellation

The Competition Sponsors reserve the right to terminate or suspend the Competition or to amend these Rules and Regulations at any time and in any way, without prior notice, for any reason whatsoever. Without limiting the foregoing, if for any reason the Competition is not capable of running or being completed as originally planned, the Competition Sponsors reserve the right to cancel the Competition.

13. Disqualification

The Competition Sponsors, in their sole discretion, may disqualify any individual who attempts to undermine the legitimate operation of the Competition by tampering with any website mechanism, or who violates these Rules and Regulations.

14. Prizes

The prizes consist of one (1) grand prize and four (4) category prizes. Winners will receive no compensation, credit or prizing other than as disclosed in these Rules or otherwise provided at the sole discretion of the Competition Sponsors. Prizes are not transferable; no prize substitutions or equivalents are permitted, except by the Competition Sponsors at their sole discretion. In all cases, the Competition Sponsors reserve the right to substitute a prize of equal or greater value for any of the prizes.

Grand prize

Awarded to one outstanding ECOP selected from among all eligible entrants.

  • An invitation to participate in a Students on Ice expedition as an expedition photographer. (approximate value: $14,000)

  • One-year subscription to Canadian Geographic magazine (approximate retail value: $30)

Category prizes

Awarded to the single best image uploaded in each category, as selected by our panel of judges.

The Blue Future category prize

  • Canada Goose prize pack including poncho and scarf (approximate retail value: $850)

  • One-year subscription to Canadian Geographic magazine (approximate retail value: $30)

Unexpected Encounters category prize

  • RCGS x Canadiana prize pack, including a selection of RCGS/Can Geo-branded clothing. Specific items subject to available inventory at the time of awarding (approximate retail value $300)

  • Bundle of Canadian Geographic special publications (approximate retail value $50)

  • One-year subscription to Canadian Geographic magazine (approximate retail value: $30)

Ocean Solutions category prize

  • $500 cash

  • One-year subscription to Canadian Geographic magazine (approximate retail value: $30)

“The things we do for the ocean” category prize

  • Hydro Flask prize pack including a 20L Carry Out Cooler, 1 x Medium Ice-Pack, 2 x 32oz Bottle, and 2 x 20oz All Around Tumblers (approximate retail value $300)

  • One-year subscription to Canadian Geographic magazine (approximate retail value: $30)

Prize values are estimates; actual retail value will vary depending on where the prize is shipped.

All prizes must be accepted as awarded and may not be used in conjunction with any other offer or promotion, sold, redeemed for cash, combined with any other promotion, or exchanged for a different prize. Allow six to eight weeks for delivery of prizes.

To be declared a winner, the selected entrant must sign and return a declaration and release form confirming eligibility and compliance with these Rules and Regulations, consenting to the use, without further compensation, of his/her/their name, address (city and province or territory of residence) and photograph(s) in any Competition-related publicity and releasing the Competition Sponsor, their directors, officers, employees and their respective agents, affiliates, parents, subsidiaries, and assigns, from all liability arising in connection with the Competition or the acceptance, use or redemption of a prize as awarded. The declaration and release must be returned to the Competition Sponsor within ten (10) days after receipt. Entrants who fail or are unable to meet any of these Rules and Regulations may be disqualified and alternate winner(s) will be selected.

15. Limitation of Liability

By entering and participating in this Competition, each entrant agrees to hold harmless the Competition Sponsors, their directors, officers, employees, agents, affiliates, parents, subsidiaries, and assigns from any liability for damage, injury, death, loss, cancellation or other liability arising from the entrants acceptance or use of a prize or substituted prize or having participated in this Competition including, without limitation, claims based on publicity rights, defamation, invasion of privacy, travel-related injuries and/or death, or from the misuse or malfunction of a prize or substitute prize. Winners assume all liability for any injury or damage caused, or claimed to be caused, whatsoever and however arising, by participation in this Competition or use or redemption of any prize.

The Competition Sponsors, their directors, officers, employees, agents, parents, subsidiaries, and assigns assume no liability for losses incurred as a result of a cancellation of the Competition or for any reason whatsoever or through the acts or defaults of any company or person providing a prize or for events occurring after the award of a prize. All such losses or expenses will be borne by each individual prize winner. The Competition is subject to all applicable federal, provincial, and local laws and may be void where prohibited by the law of the entrant’s place of residence. Decisions of the Competition Sponsors regarding all aspects of the Competition are final.

16. Disputes

By participating in the Competition, each entrant agrees to be bound by these Rules and Regulations. In the event of any dispute as to whether a person is an entrant, a potential winner or a winner, or as to the qualification of any entrant, potential winner or winner, or the adequacy of any prize or any substitute prize, the decision of the Competition Sponsors will be final.

For Residents of Quebec Only: any litigation respecting the conduct or organization of a publicity Competition may be submitted to the Régie des alcools, des courses et des jeux for a ruling. Any such litigation respecting the awarding of a prize to any resident of the Province of Québec may be submitted to the Régie only for the purpose of helping the parties reach a settlement.

17. Privacy

The Competition Sponsors respect every entrant’s right to privacy. By entering this Competition, each entrant is deemed to automatically have provided his/her/their consent that personal information collected from entrants will only be used by the Competition Sponsors or their affiliates to administer the Competition and to publish the winning photographs. Neither the Competition Sponsors nor their affiliates will share personal information relating to entrants with any third parties, except as necessary for the administration of the Competition or as may be required by law. Any conflict or discrepancy between the foregoing provisions of this Rule 17 and any applicable laws or regulations of Canada, or the provinces or territories of Canada, with respect to privacy, shall be resolved in favour of such applicable laws or regulations. The Competition Sponsors will not attempt to contact the entrant for any purpose other than as may be required by law unless they have opted-in to receive relevant communications from the Competition Sponsors.

18. Interpretation of these Rules

All issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation, and enforceability of these Rules and Regulations, or the respective rights and obligations of the prize claimants and the Competition Sponsors in connection with the Competition, shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with (i) the laws of the Province of Québec and the laws of Canada applicable therein with respect to the residents of the Province of Québec, and (ii) the laws of the Province of Ontario and the laws of Canada applicable therein with respect to residents of the other Canadian provinces and territories, without regard to conflicts of law principles. Any attempt by a participant or any other individual to deliberately damage any website or undermine the legitimate operation of the Competition could be a violation of criminal and civil laws and should such an attempt be made, the Competition Sponsor reserves the right to seek damages from any such person to the fullest extent permitted by law. The Competition is subject to all applicable federal, provincial and municipal laws.