The Organization

The Documentary Organization of Canada (DOC) is the collective voice of Canada’s independent documentary creators. DOC began in 1983 as the Canadian Independent Film Caucus (CIFC) to represent the interests of Canada’s growing community of indi doc filmmakers. Today DOC has over 1000 members across six chapters from coast to coast.

DOC’s National office leads on research and advocacy work that strengthens the ecosystem for documentary production while DOC chapters provide community support, professional development and networking opportunities. DOC negotiates preferential professional rates and discounts for our members. Every day, we work to create conditions that will ensure that documentaries – and their creators – thrive.

MILESTONES

1983

The CIFC (Canadian Independent Film Caucus) was founded in Toronto in 1983 and advocated successfully for the creation of the CFDC’s (now Telefilm) documentary broadcast envelope.

1990

The CIFC launched POV Magazine, Canada’s premiere and longest running magazine covering documentary culture.

1992

The CIFC was instrumental in bringing new documentary strands to public airwaves, including CBC’s Witness and The Passionate Eye.

1994

The CIFC founded Hot Docs – now North America’s biggest documentary-focused film festival.

2003

The CIFC was renamed DOC.

2004

DOC Quebec co-founded the RIDM Forum, the industry component of North America’s largest francophone documentary festival.

2010

DOC successfully advocated for the creation of the Canada Media Fund’s English POV Program.

2013

The Ontario Chapter launched the DOC Institute, a dedicated hub providing professional development activities for non-fiction professionals.

2019

DOC launched a two-year free membership program for Indigenous filmmakers, encouraging greater representation and equity in Canada’s film industry.

2020

DOC launched Documentary Production in the Era of COVID-19: Best Practice by and for Documentary Filmmakers.

2021

DOC launched a two-year free membership program for filmmakers who identify as Black, Indigenous, and/or Persons of Colour, encouraging greater representation and equity in Canada’s film industry.

MANDATE

The Documentary Organization of Canada (DOC) is a member driven, not for profit, National Arts Service Organization, with charitable status. Its mandate is to:

  • Support, promote and develop the art form of documentary creation;
  • Advocate on behalf of its members to foster an environment conducive to documentary production; and
  • Strengthen the sector within the broader screen industry.

MISSION

The Documentary Organization of Canada (DOC) is the collective voice of Canada’s independent documentary creators. DOC:

1

Promotes Canadian documentary creators, documentary culture and the documentary community

2

Champions the creative, social and cultural contributions of documentary, including its role in fostering civic engagement and a democratic society.

3

Advances the rights of documentary creators from historically marginalized, underrepresented and misrepresented groups in Canada to hold agency in storytelling and production.

4

Advocates for a thriving ecosystem for the production and distribution of documentaries across all platforms.

5

Advocates for equitable access to resources, fair compensation and safer spaces for all documentary creators.

6

Promotes a culture of documentary making based on honest creative exploration, inventiveness, respect, reciprocity, and responsible and ethical documentary practices.

7

Connects and supports diverse documentary creators across Canada.

8

Fosters connections with documentarians and stakeholder organizations internationally.

VISION

Documentary is widely recognized as an essential part of Canada’s social fabric, fostering understanding and activating democratic discourse and social action.

Canada’s thriving community of independent documentary creators benefits from a sustainable financing ecosystem, and distribution networks that bring Canadian documentaries to communities big and small, nationally and internationally.

Documentary production is rooted in a culture that values creative exploration, diversity of voice and expression, and deeply ethical practices anchored in respect, reciprocity and collaboration.

Canada’s history of documentary storytelling is known and celebrated by society while new generations of creators are supported to constantly reimagine the genre.

ORGANIZATIONAL VALUES

These values continually guide and inspire us in all areas of our internal and external activities, operations, programs and advocacy.

  • RESPECT
  • INCLUSIVITY
  • EQUITY
  • TRANSPARENCY
  • RESPONSIBILITY
  • RECIPROCITY
  • CULTURAL PLURALISM
  • REPRESENTATION
  • COLLABORATION
  • HUMILITY
  • SERVICE
  • ACTIVE
  • OPENNESS