Taking knowledge-sharing and collaboration to the next level to equip Ontario’s cities and communities for the future.
UOIT anchors Oshawa’s TeachingCity
Looking for innovative solutions to its urban challenges, the City of Oshawa has partnered with the University of Ontario Institute of Technology, Durham College and the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering on the TeachingCity initiative. The partnership encourages the postsecondary institutions to share expertise and students to work with city staff on collaborative projects, helping the rapidly growing city look at new ways of improving urban services and infrastructure. The TeachingCity has already opened a downtown hub, completed a study on diversity and inclusion to give new residents equal access to jobs and services, and held a hackathon to develop ideas for digital solutions in the city. The next phase of projects includes studies on storm water management and improving transit for the aging population.
Queen’s and Kingston partner for economic growth
Queen’s University and the City of Kingston have entered into an official partnership to collaborate on projects that support economic development, innovation, and encourage more young people to stay and work in the community. One goal of the partnership is to boost new business creation, encourage more student-led start-ups and build on the work being done at the Dunin-Deshpande Queen’s Innovation Centre; and enable Queen’s and the city to work together on new economic development projects involving investment from the provincial and federal governments. The partnership will also open up more real-life learning opportunities for students.
The lab cooking up a better future for Guelph
The Guelph Lab is a joint initiative between the University of Guelph and the City of Guelph that has received national attention for creative contributions to important community issues. The Lab facilitates university students and staff to work with city staff to design, test and implement projects. Among its initiatives so far is the Civic Accelerator, which enables the City to work with technology companies on challenges such as reducing residential water consumption through real-time smartphone alerts. The Lab has also produced a report on how the city can take advantage of the sharing economy, and students have shadowed users of public services to draw up recommendations for improvements.
The lab cooking up a better future for Hamilton
CityLAB Hamilton is a partnership between the City of Hamilton and McMaster University, Mohawk College and Redeemer University College in which students and academics work with city staff on bold ideas to tackle to Hamilton’s urban challenges. The initiative, which launched in 2017, involves projects under three themes: healthy neighbourhoods, climate change and municipal excellence. Projects underway include mapping and remediating brownfield sites, predicting the economic and environmental effects of the Hamilton LRT system, and analyzing traffic flows at city intersections to look for improvements.
Working to bring new jobs to Niagara
Brock University is leading a research consortium with Niagara College and the Niagara Workforce Planning Board to help civic leaders develop policies to boost the region’s economy and labour market. Brock’s Niagara Community Observatory, a policy institute, is heading the collaboration, which will study issues such as labour flows in and out of the region and suggest ways of stimulating job creation.