CivicLabTO is a collaborative and strategic partnership between eight higher education institutions (HEI) and the City of Toronto. This esteemed group of academic and civic leaders is forging a path of partnership and innovation between organizations.
At its core, CivicLabTO brings together students, faculty, researchers, and City staff who seek opportunities for sharing information and best practices. The City’s partnerships with Toronto’s universities and colleges offers students and faculty a living lab with an opportunity for exposure to real life problems and complex challenges. In return, academic partners offer the City opportunities for innovation, intellectual exchange of ideas, critical analysis, research and evaluation, and the ability to raise research funds. CivicLabTO is an opportunity to engage in strategies for change and innovation, to test theories, conduct research, use experiential learning, and increase networking.
This work includes the advancement of a new model for the city and academia to collaborate with on multi-partner, multidisciplinary research. It has the capacity to inform policy and programs when developing the next generation of leaders. Examples of CivicLabTO efforts include the Common Curriculum programming, and, with the support of a grant received from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, the CivicLabTO Discussion Series and CivicLabTO Academic Summit, all launched in 2021.