The closing session of the inaugural CivicLabTO Academic Summit was an opportunity to celebrate what has been achieved and highlight where we're going. In addition to thanking all partners, organizers, institutions and panelists for their contributions, it is equally important to discuss outcomes and next steps. How do we mobilize the ideas of the Summit into research projects that inform strong urban policy-making? How do we further the relationships built in the Summit process to develop our common focus on sustainable and equitable urban development? The official closing of the event includes an announcement of the hosts of the 2023 CivicLabTO Academic Summit.
Director, Strategic Partnerships, City of Toronto
Manjit Jheeta is the Director of Strategic Partnerships at the City of Toronto, where she supports innovative collaborations between the City and public and private sector organizations. She leads several different projects, such as DonateTO, a philanthropic program meant to enhance city services; as well as the Social Medicine Initiative, which develops innovative models of collaboration focused on the integration of health and social services. Jheeta also supports the Unsolicited Proposals Process, which looks to engage business partners in joint ventures that advance innovation within programs and processes when delivering public sector services.
Over the last 20 years, Jheeta has led funding and community development programs in the United Kingdom, Vancouver, and Toronto. Prior to her work in strategic partnerships, she developed the City’s first Community Safety Unit, leading to the development of gang intervention and prevention strategies, and the innovative Community Crisis Response Program.
Dr. Joe Mihevc
Visiting Professor, Department of Geography, York University
Dr. Joe Mihevc is a Visiting Professor in the Department of Geography at York University. Prior to this, he was a city councillor for the City of York and the City of Toronto for 27 years (1991-2018). Among other positions, he has served as Deputy Mayor of the City of York, Chair of the Board of Health, Chair of the Community Development Committee, Chair of the Taskforce on Access and Equity, Vice Chair of the TTC, and Vice Chair of the Budget Committee. Dr. Mihevc has extensive knowledge and expertise in municipal governance and public policy, public health, community development, community engagement, housing policy, economic development, urban planning and redevelopment, sustainability, poverty reduction, transit planning, and newcomer resettlement.
Dr. Mihevc also has a Ph.D. in Theology and Social Ethics, with decades of experience teaching at the university level, including serving as the Director of the Globalization of Theology Program at the Toronto School of Theology and St. Michael's College at the University of Toronto, a program that sends students to Peru and Mexico.
Manager, Knowledge Mobilization, York University
Michael Johnny has served at York University as Manager, Knowledge Mobilization since 2006. Responsibilities focus on connecting researchers, students, policy professionals, community organizations, entrepreneurs, and industry leaders to collaborate, maximizing the social, economic, and environmental impacts of research for public good.
Dr. Robert Luke
Chief Executive Officer, eCampusOntario
Dr. Robert Luke is Chief Executive Officer of eCampusOntario, an organization that leads and promotes innovation and adoption of digital learning within Ontario’s universities and colleges. Prior to this role, he spent 10 years in executive management as Vice-President, Research & Innovation at George Brown College and at OCAD University. Dr. Luke’s expertise is in human-centered knowledge media design, working at the intersections of education and information science to produce useful and useable technology.His experience also includes the development of academic business, innovation, and incubation initiatives.
With his extensive experience in the evaluation of national research and innovation systems, Dr. Luke twice served on the Council of Canadian Academies Expert Panel Review of The State of Science and Technology and the State of Industrial Research & Development in Canada. In 2012, he was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for contributions to Canadian education and innovation.