Canada's Premier Organization for Documentary Creators

The Documentary Organization of Canada (DOC) is the collective voice of independent documentary creators across Canada and the premier organization for Canadian documentary advocacy. We analyze policy, conduct insightful research, and speak up at all orders of government to help our distinctly Canadian genre flourish.

The creation of documentary work blends passion, art, observation, humour, and criticism. Our country has a rich history of documentary filmmaking, a history that we at DOC honour and celebrate to ensure its permanent place in our country's cultural conscience.

The Documentary Organization of Canada helps Canadian documentary creators get their work produced and seen. At local levels we offer top-notch professional development and networking opportunities through our workshops, masterclasses, and mentorship programs. We also continually work to build a suite of services and benefits that lower the professional expenses of our members.


Canadian documentary production thrives in a social, political, and cultural environment that promotes independent voices, creativity, debate, social action, and education. That same environment should value the tradition of excellence in Canadian documentary productions while always looking to advance the evolution of the genre.


The Documentary Organization of Canada is the voice of Canada’s independent documentary creators. DOC champions the production and distribution of documentaries across all platforms; advocates on behalf of creators and producers; and connects and strengthens the Canadian documentary community.

A History of Advocacy

From the beginning, advocacy has been at the heart of the Documentary Organization of Canada. The organization was founded as the Canadian Independent Film & Video Caucus (CIFC) in 1983, at a time when major documentary funders like the Canadian Broadcast Program Development Fund (the predecessor of Telefilm Canada) excluded documentaries from their mandates. It was clear that real political advocacy was required to address the issue and to improve conditions for independent documentary filmmakers in Canada.

The organization’s first regional chapter was founded in Toronto in 1988. The Hot Docs Film Festival, founded by DOC, debuted in 1994 and is now the largest documentary-focused film festival in North America. Since the mid-1990s, the organization has grown rapidly and has chapters in each province (except Sask), and was officially renamed the Documentary Organization of Canada in 2003.