Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 69.71
Liaison Sharmilla Raj
Submission Date May 6, 2024

STARS v2.2

Toronto Metropolitan University
AC-8: Campus as a Living Laboratory

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Campus Engagement?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Campus Engagement:
The Office of Social Innovation (OSI) strives to create transformative approaches to challenge complex social issues through teaching, learning and research. Their commitment to research is informed by the understanding that novel approaches are required to challenge systems of exclusion. One of the research endeavours that OSI undertook in 2022 was: (Re)Searching from within: arriving at a scholarly approach to social innovation in higher education. The Office of Social Innovation undertakes transformative initiatives that challenge systemic issues and create a space to imagine alternative pathways and perspectives. The team of staff, students, and faculty have undertaken an intentional process to reflect on these initiatives and elaborate a scholarly approach: one that enters into dialogue with existing scholarship and identifies potential avenues of further research. Guided by their commitment to collaboration and transformation, the team identifies four research areas of interest: systems thinking pedagogy, community engagement, challenging institutional boundaries in knowledge generation, and the scholarship of teaching and learning. They reflect on each and explore ideas and methods for future research.

https://www.torontomu.ca/social-innovation/research/articles/researching-from-within/

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Public Engagement?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Public Engagement:
The Office of Social Innovation (OSI) strives to create transformative approaches to challenge complex social issues through teaching, learning and research. Their commitment to research is informed by the understanding that novel approaches are required to challenge systems of exclusion. One of the projects that was undertaken is:

From Spark to Insight: Student Engagement in Social Innovation as a Pathway for Personal and Professional Development
From Spark to Insight: Student Engagement in Social Innovation as a Pathway for Personal and Professional Development aims to address the gap in scholarship surrounding the relationship between student engagement in social innovation and student learning outcomes. The article explores what factors facilitate or inhibit student involvement in social innovation in higher education institutions and how this involvement might promote or support student learning.
Throughout the article, the authors briefly explore the definition of social innovation and its role in higher education institutions. They also explore the unique position of the Office of Social Innovation (OSI) at Toronto Metropolitan University and how OSI defines social innovation through a social justice lens.

https://www.torontomu.ca/social-innovation/research/articles/from-spark-to-insight/

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Air & Climate?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Air & Climate:
Urban Water TMU researchers and experts have conducted research regarding natural systems and green tech, including those that affect air quality. Some of the research published in the recent 3 years:

Hydroponic Green Wall Research - Researcher Dr. Stephanie Melles and graduate student Corbin Sparks are undertaking a study to test the biofiltration capacity of a hydroponic green wall system and its ability to remove volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from the air.
More information can be found on the website - https://www.torontomu.ca/water/natural-systems---green-tech/research/hydroponic-green-wall-research/

TMU Urban Farm is a Living Lab that brings together urban farmers, community partners and academics through interdisciplinary research on the rooftop farm. Some of the research conducted in the recent 3 years on the Urban Farm:

Meteorological Monitoring of the Urban Farm (August 2020-ongoing) - The principal investigator of this project is Prof. Claire Oswald (PhD). The goal of the research is to install a meteorological station on the roof of the George Vari Engineering and Computing Centre to monitor temperature, precipitation, wind speed/direction, humidity, and certain types of solar radiation; to use data as a teaching tool and for other research purposes.

More information can be found on the website - https://www.torontomu.ca/university-business-services/urban-farm/research/current-and-past-research/#!accordion-1638366085284-meteorological-monitoring-of-the-urban-farm

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Buildings?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Buildings:
The recently constructed Daphne Coxwell Complex (DCC) contains an energy tracking board, enabling Facilities to advance and improve building operations. This building also uses a greywater collection system: water collected from showers, taps and rain is treated and used to flush toilets. The building is the first TMU-owned structure to use chilled beam technology, which helps to regulate temperature in offices, reducing electricity and fossil fuel use. The mechanical systems have been designed to be very energy-efficient as well, reducing the environmental impact of the building.

In CVL300 Environmental Science and Impact Assessment, students worked in groups to prepare a retrofit Kerr Hall plan based on the green building guidelines of Toronto, Canadian, and international guidelines.

In BL8104 Energy Efficient Design studio students developed a comprehensive retrofit strategy for the Architecture building. The students in this course proposed a design for a new low carbon building on Campus. In the past, students have worked on other buildings on campus.

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Energy?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Energy:
The Centre for Urban Energy (CUE) brings together industry, government and top researchers from across Canada and around the world to undertake collaborative, multi-disciplinary research on the issues facing large cities today. CUE combines the perspectives of engineering, science, environment, business, social science, public policy, law and infrastructure management. The Centre for Urban Energy also provides its partners with access to its world-class facilities in order to cost-effectively test their latest clean energy technologies and prototypes at grid scale. The testing facilities are:

The Schneider Electric Smart Grid Lab serves as a hub for researchers and practicing engineers. It is a collaborative facility for testing and demonstrating smart grid ideas and products to modernize the electricity delivery system and the engagement of customers in managing their electricity usage.

Transactive Energy Distribution System Lab - In 2019, the Centre for Urban Energy opened its Transactive Energy Distribution System (TEDS) Laboratory. The TEDS Lab is a world first and was designed by our research team to test, model and analyze transactive energy distribution systems.

Grid-scale battery - The Centre for Urban Energy has an outdoor facility connected to the 13.8 kilovolt (kV) Toronto Hydro grid and can test units in megawatt (MW) scale. The facility is monitored and controlled by a utility-grade supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system via a fibre-optic link.

https://www.torontomu.ca/cue/testing/

For the class GEO702, Technology and the Contemporary Environment, students were asked to conduct a personal energy audit that allows them to obtain an understanding of the amount of energy each individual consumes in a given week - both on campus and at home. Students were asked to cumulate their survey and research in a final essay. For information see here: https://cpb-us-e1.wpmucdn.com/wp.wwu.edu/dist/4/774/files/2016/08/Handouts-Personal-Energy-Audit-utw2u9.pdf

The Sustainability Office Energy Intern helps with evaluating energy consumption and TMU's carbon footprint in terms of HVAC systems, electricity systems, steam steams, lighting uses, and natural gas. Additionally, the student conducts research for improvements to TMU infrastructure to minimize the environmental impact of TMU. This position supports the energy management program with data analysis and reporting requirements. The engineering intern works closely with the energy management team to ensure accuracy of data as well as to upload data from external sources to an internal database.

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Food & Dining?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Food & Dining:
In 2022, an SSHRC-funded collaborative research project brings together scholars from Ryerson University’s Centre for Studies in Food Security and the City of Toronto’s Poverty Reduction Strategy Office. It aims to enhance the existing capacity of the municipal government in assessing how vulnerable neighbourhoods and food security organizations responded to the initial and residual impacts of COVID-19, and bridge gaps in local and expert knowledge necessary for developing an emergency preparedness strategy for future food-system shocks that upholds the City of Toronto’s resilience and equity goals.

https://www.torontomu.ca/foodsecurity/projects/activity_covid/

The Urban Farm is a Living Lab that brings together urban farmers, community partners and academics through interdisciplinary research on the rooftop farm. Some of the research regarding food conducted in the recent 3 years on the Urban Farm:

Fava bean (Vicia faba) variety Trial for Field and Rooftop Frams in Ontario (April 2023-Ongoing) - Michelle Dang and Sharene Shafie (Urban Farm at TMU), Martina Schaefer (Spiral Veg Farm), Leslie Moskovits (Cedar Down Farm), Dillon Muldoon (Trent Research Farm) and the Ecological Farmers' Association of Ontario are the principal investigators and researchers for this project.The goal of the research is to identify the most productive varieties of fava beans across different farms in Ontario.

Natural Dye & Fibre Experiential Garden (May 2022-Ongoing) - Rachel MacHenry (MA) and Joseph Medaglia (MA) are principal investigators and researchers on this project. This initiative supports faculty and students through teaching, learning and research-creation projects at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Natural dyes and fibres derived from plants have profound potential for understanding ecological, historical, social, cultural and artistic knowledge of human, plant and community relations. In particular, the Urban Farm offers a compelling context of the natural to the built environment. Plants include Indigo, Madder, Dyer's, Chamomile, Woad and Hopi Sunflower, and are foraged for courses including the Natural Dye Workshop and available to upper-level students in Fashion Capstone and MA Fashion.

More information can be found in the website - https://www.torontomu.ca/university-business-services/urban-farm/research/current-and-past-research/#!accordion-1655128300594-hydrologic-and-thermal-performance-of-a-full-scale-farmed-blue-green-roof

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Grounds?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Grounds:
The Center of Urban Research and Land Development (CUR) intends to focus on the economic impacts and aspects of urban issues and policy alternatives in an effort to have economic analysis central to the formulation of urban policy decisions within the Greater Golden Horseshoe. Some of the research in progress includes:

Policy Guidelines for Increasing Outdoor Thermal Comfort in Toronto: An Analysis of the Urban Microclimate - Principle Investigator: Dr. Umberto Berardi
Over the past few decades, making outdoor spaces attractive and, ultimately, used by people, has become a key goal in urban planning and design. The design of outdoor spaces strongly affect the urban microclimate, which is an important contributor to pedestrians' health, urban air quality, energy consumption of buildings, and overall urban sustainability. The increasing effort toward liveable cities is often focused on evaluating environmental quality or resource use.

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Purchasing?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Purchasing:
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Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Transportation?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Transportation:
Transform Lab is a transportation and land use planning research laboratory at TMU. The primary goal of the Transform laboratory is to develop and invest in students while examining how existing and novel means of transportation influence urban systems, and how our regions and neighbourhoods shape travel behaviour and human movement. Some of their latest projects include:

Exploring North American E-Scooter Policy to Inform Canadian Micromobility Planning (2020-2022):
The research involves a policy scan of e-scooter regulations in North American cities to look for patterns in regulations that address public health & safety, environmental sustainability, economic sustainability, social equity and transportation integration-related concerns. Subsequently, 20+ interviews with municipal planners were conducted to identify challenges behind e-scooter program implementation, how they have been overcome, and how findings from pilot projects have affected policy. The project is supported by a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) Partnership Engage Grant.

Active Transportation Planning and Travel Behaviour Change in a Post-COVID-19 Canada (Update: Sept. 2021)
Our new research project, funded by a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) grant, will make important, novel contributions to understanding the dynamics of active transportation planning and the potential for supporting desired changes in travel behaviour among the Canadian population. This 4-year research project focuses on municipalities in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area, ON; the Montreal Metropolitan Area, QC; and the Metro Vancouver Area, BC. Home to 38% of Canada's population, these regions are have been impacted the most by the pandemic. Our first report of this study has now been released! Entitled "Usage and Public Support for Pandemic-Time Street Reallocation Projects in Three Canadian Urban Centre", this report explores the use and public support for new bicycle lanes/ paths, street closures, slow/quiet streets, and street cafés/patios in three major Canadian urban areas - Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver.

For more information see here: https://transformlab.torontomu.ca/

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Waste?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Waste:
During the SOC 808 Sociology of Food and Eating course, students conduct a research project and lead a waste audit and survey of our campus waste management system, and create a plan to improve waste management and diversion. The results of these projects are shared with and are taken under consideration by the Sustainability Office, having the potential to advance sustainable waste management practices on campus.

TMU's Sustainability Office launched a Waste Wizard pilot program on October 2023. To improve TMU's waste diversion and our recycling and composting capacity, Facilities Management and Development implemented four-stream waste bins to recover more materials destined for landfill and redirect them to recycling and composting facilities. And now the Sustainability Office is launching a new digital tool to empower our community to reduce TMU’s environmental impact and facilitate good day-to-day habits.

https://www.torontomu.ca/facilities-management-development/sustainability/news-events/news/2023/10/tmu-waste-wizard/

Urban Water TMU researchers and experts have conducted research regarding natural systems and green tech, including those that impact waste. Examples of research conducted:

Transforming Biosolids to Value for Municipalities - Many wastewater treatment utilities around the world manage their biosolid residuals using an incineration process that results in a significant mass of ash. Urban Water TMU is studying the composition of this ash in the context of resource recovery. With cooperation from three Ontario municipalities, our researchers analyzed composite ash samples from municipal biosolid incinerators and identified a broad suite of elements, including common and precious metals. Using market prices and ash production estimates, the value of each metal per tonne of ash was calculated, revealing a promising opportunity to offset costs. These results were presented at both the Water and Environment Association of Ontario Annual Conference and the Central Canadian Symposium on Water Quality Research. With support from our municipal partners, this work led to an invited proposal to the Environmental Research and Education Foundation.

More information can be found on the website - https://www.torontomu.ca/water/natural-systems---green-tech/research/transforming_biosolids/

The Sustainability Office Waste & Recycling student Intern assists the sustainability engagement coordinator with data collection and waste management improvement action plan development. This is accomplished by collecting, analysing and presenting large amounts of data with attention to detail and will use critical thinking to contribute to a plan that will result in an increase of TMU's diversion from landfill, effectively coordinating volunteers for activities such as waste audits and collecting and analysing large data sets. Frequent tasks included analysing waste management practices at Ryerson University, benchmarking performance with peer organizations, researching best practices, consulting with stakeholders to find relevant solutions, and preparing draft reports.

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Water?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Water:
The Urban Farm is a Living Lab that brings together urban farmers, community partners and academics through interdisciplinary research on the rooftop farm. Some of the research regarding water conducted in the recent 3 years on the Urban Farm:

Hydrologic and Thermal Performance of a Full-Scale Farmed Blue–Green Roof - A study completed in 2021 found that 85-88% of stormwater was retained by the Urban Farm’s green roof, resulting in a peak delay of 7.7 to 8 hours, greatly reducing strain on municipal infrastructure. Farmed blue–green roof evaluated in this study provides a runoff control and microclimate improvement comparable to or better than conventional green roofs, in addition to other benefits such as improving food security.

More information can be found in the website - https://www.torontomu.ca/university-business-services/urban-farm/research/current-and-past-research/#!accordion-1655128300594-hydrologic-and-thermal-performance-of-a-full-scale-farmed-blue-green-roof

Urban Water TMU is a multidisciplinary consortium of researchers who strive to solve complex urban water challenges through transdisciplinary research, strong external networks, and collaborative action. The Centre comprises researchers and students from across 6 faculties and 13 departments from the natural sciences and engineering, to policy landscapes, to social science arenas. Urban Water experts work on a broad range of complex urban water challenges, including urban water management and governance such as contaminants of emerging concern, urban natural systems and green technologies such as low-impact development and green roofs, and freshwater pollution and governance such as salinization due to road salting practices and Indigenous community water challenges. Some examples of the research conducted on TMU campus:

Flushability - Product Dispersion in Sewers with Purpose-Built Sanitary Sewer
Researchers Barry Orr and Darko Joksimovic are continuing their research on disposable products by checking product dispersion in sewers with this purpose-built to-scale sanitary sewer in the Urban Water wet lab! They are studying variable flow and shear stress conditions on the dispersibility of flushable consumer products and their potential to reduce sewer blockages over time. Our research at the Toronto Metropolitan University's Flushability lab on the dispersion of flushed products has resulted in two flushable wipes manufacturers adding the IWSFG logo to their packaging. Plus we have now completed two public service announcement videos that show how new technology of flushable wipes are falling into small pieces within a short amount of sewer retention time.

Wastewater Surveillance for COVID-19 - A multidisciplinary team of Urban Water TMU researchers, co-led by Dr. Kimberley Gilbride (Chemistry and Biology) and Dr. Claire Oswald (Geography and Environmental Studies), have been conducting wastewater surveillance for COVID-19 since summer 2020 in partnership with the Province of Ontario, Toronto Public Health, Toronto Water, and Unity Health (St. Michael’s Hospital). As part of the Province of Ontario’s Wastewater Surveillance Initiative (WSI), they are collecting and testing wastewater from one wastewater treatment plant, six communities (or neighbourhoods), and eight facilities (e.g., shelters, long-term care homes, hospitals, campus residences) in the City of Toronto.

More information can be found on the website - https://www.torontomu.ca/water/about/publications/

As part of the CVL903 Water and Wastewater Treatment course, students explore wastewater collection, sewage treatment, and wastewater microbiology. In the past, students have conducted experimental laboratory work on TMU campus involving sedimentation model, chemical treatment: coagulation and flocculation, nutrients, biochemical oxygen demand, and microscopic analyses of sludge.
As part of CVL Municipal Solid Waste Management, students use TMU as a case study in their introduction to legislation and authority; integrated solid waste management planning; solid waste generation, characterization, and collection; collection and processing; reduction, reuse, and recycle; landfilling of municipal waste, site selection, development, hydrological factors, leachate and gas collection and control, closure; solid waste incineration.

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Coordination & Planning?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Coordination & Planning:
TMU's School of Urban and Regional Planning is home to an active research enterprise. Their research centres and labs bring together scholars, students, professionals and members of the community to address critical urban planning issues.

Centre for Urban Research and Land Development
The Centre for Urban Research and Land Development formulates policies and solutions that address the concerns confronting urban growth and change within the Greater Golden Horseshoe. The following are examples of some of the ongoing research:
Policy Guidelines for Increasing Outdoor Thermal Comfort in Toronto: An Analysis of the Urban Microclimate - Over the past few decades, making outdoor spaces attractive and, ultimately, used by people, has become a key goal in urban planning and design. The design of outdoor spaces strongly affect the urban microclimate, which is an important contributor to pedestrians' health, urban air quality, energy consumption of buildings, and overall urban sustainability. The increasing effort toward liveable cities is often focused on evaluating environmental quality or resource use.

An Analysis of Section 37 Agreements in the City of Toronto - Based on the availability of a unique data set of the application of Section 37 agreements for the City of Toronto, the research will examine the content of these agreements, their economic implications, and make recommendations for how to improve the process of undertaking these agreements.
https://www.torontomu.ca/centre-urban-research-land-development/

Ecological Design Lab
The Ecological Design Lab tests new strategies, develops evidence-based next-generation practices, and finds tangible solutions to sustainability and resilience, as we rethink, remake, reinvent and renew our relationship to nature in the city. Some examples of the work done at the Ecological Design Lab include:
BIRD-SAFE CITY (2023): Bird-Safe Design Guidelines for the Biophilic City
Many birds in North and South America are experiencing significant decline due to urbanization and climate change resulting in new ecological interactions, outpacing their ability to adapt (Whelan et al., 2015). The expansion of urban areas and human infrastructure has resulted in the fragmentation and loss of bird habitats. Larger urban areas within migratory paths pose a significant threat to bird life as these areas typically emit high levels of light pollution and have countless buildings containing large amounts of glass. The combination of the two hazards pose a lethal threat to bird safety. Bird’s rely on the sun and stars to navigate, and when these celestial cues are obscured by excess artificial light, birds are disoriented, leading to collisions with windows.
The project deliverables include a Planning Report, Bird-Safe Design Toolkit, and updated Bird-Safe Design Guidelines. Together, they will contribute to a holistic approach aimed at ensuring safe passage and improved urban habitats for birds. By aligning with the City’s commitment to the Biophilic Cities Network, Toronto aims to strengthen its position as a champion of urban biodiversity through innovative and sustainable planning practices. Successful implementation of this project promises a future where cities and nature coexist sustainably, demonstrating the critical role of urban planning in fostering biodiversity protection.

For more information, please visit: https://ecologicaldesignlab.ca/

ReActivate: Brownfields Research Lab
ReActivate is a brownfields research lab focused on the study of the assessment, redevelopment, and reactivation of urban and rural spaces in North America.
https://www.brownfieldsresearchlab.com/

City Building TMU
City Building TMU is a university-wide initiative to facilitate research collaborations, mobilize knowledge and showcase the scholarly, research and creative (SRC) activity happening in city building and urban innovation across the institution.

One of the initiatives that City Building TMU has worked on is:
CivicLabTO: Collaboration in Action
CivicLabTO is a city building knowledge exchange platform shared between the City of Toronto and eight academic institutions in the city. Its purpose is to unite subject matter experts and municipal leaders, sparking conversation, learning and collaboration on important civic issues. Through sharing insights and resources, members of the CivicLabTO partnership contribute to valuable cross-sectoral dialogue, ultimately creating greater urban research and training opportunities at local colleges and universities, and strengthening informed decision making and policy at the municipal level.
Toronto Metropolitan University has been a strong partner in this initiative since its inception in 2021, collaborating on delivering the common course curriculum to students, partnering on research projects led by the City of Toronto, preparing a report on the inaugural summit, and advancing partnership activities. In 2023, TMU was proud to co-host, with Centennial College, the second biennial CivicLabTO symposium on November 15, at the Progress Campus of Centennial College in Scarborough.

For more information, please visit https://www.torontomu.ca/city-building/

Together Design Lab
Together Design Lab takes an immersive and collaborative approach to investigating and creating innovative solutions to housing issues with marginalized communities in Canada — addressing existing cultural, gendered and class-based outcome gaps.
https://www.togetherdesignlab.com/

TransForm Lab
TransForm Lab develops and invests in students while examining how existing and novel means of transportation influence urban systems, and how our regions and neighbourhoods shape travel behaviour and human movement.
https://transformlab.torontomu.ca/

EUS 801 Senior Projects in EUS - A comprehensive capstone project allowing students to conduct an environmental consulting research project. Sample “clients” including the TMU Sustainability Office and other businesses have pitched projects to the students to identify gaps.

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Diversity & Affordability?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Diversity & Affordability:
Ted Rogers School of Management’s Diversity Institute (DI) promotes diversity and inclusion as the key to Canada’s competitiveness. Founded in 1999 by Dr. Wendy Cukier, the Diversity Institute has conducted groundbreaking research on diversity and inclusion in Canada, developed impactful programs like the Newcomer Entrepreneurship Hub, championed legislative change on Bill C-25 and has helped companies understand the opportunities of inclusion and develop tools to harness inclusion as a driver for success. The DI is leading the Government of Canada’s Women Entrepreneurship Knowledge Hub and is a partner in the Future Skills Centre. DI conducts research in the following areas: Diversity and Inclusion, Future Skills, and Entrepreneurship and innovation. Some of the most recent research that has been conducted at DI includes:

Diversity in Leadership at S&P/ TSX Companies (2023) - The business case for diversity and inclusion in corporate leadership has never been stronger. More diversity contributes to improved corporate social responsibility, innovation, employee satisfaction, governance practices and risk management. Despite growing evidence of these benefits, diversity in corporate Canada's leadership remains inadequate, tied to a lack of effective mechanisms for measurement, tracking and accountability. This report assesses the state of diversity in leadership roles in corporate Canada, focusing on representation of equity-deserving groups (women, Black individuals and racialized individuals) from 2015 to 2022. The study encompasses 783 firms on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX), including 235 on the S&P/TSX Composite Index.

For more information on DI please visit: https://www.torontomu.ca/diversity/research/

In addition, the Toronto Metropolitan Centre for Immigration and Settlement (TMCIS) aims to be a leader in the transdisciplinary exploration of international migration, integration, and diaspora and refugee studies. In addition to supporting research in these areas, the Centre’s mission includes mentoring students and consolidating Toronto Metropolitan University’s reputation as the pre‐eminent site of knowledge development and exchange with governments, community organizations, and other academics. One of the current projects conducted at TMCIS is:

The Urban Sanctuary, Migrant Solidarity, and Hospitality in Global Perspective Partnership (2020-2027):

The Urban Sanctuary, Migrant Solidarity, and Hospitality in Global Perspective Partnership brings together 36 academics and 36 partner organizations to co-develop and share evidence-based knowledge related to the policies and practices of accommodating vulnerable and precarious migrants and refugees in major urban centres in Africa, Europe, North America, and Latin America.

The project is directed by Dr. Harald Bauder and housed at the Toronto Metropolitan Centre for Immigration and Settlement (TMCIS). The project objectives are to:

Advance theoretical knowledge and practical understanding related to urban sanctuary, solidarity, and hospitality towards vulnerable migrants and refugees in the global north and south;
Build and enhance urban capacities to accommodate vulnerable migrants and refugees through international collaboration, networking, and knowledge exchange between researchers, practitioners, and urban policy makers; and
Develop novel municipal and community-based policy frameworks to facilitate innovative and evidence-based policy making at local and municipal levels for accommodating vulnerable migrants and refugees.

For more information, please visit https://www.torontomu.ca/centre-for-immigration-and-settlement/projects/#!accordion-1638198978291-urban-sanctuary--migrant-solidarity--and-hospitality-in-global-perspective-partnership--2020-2027-

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Investment & Finance?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Investment & Finance:
The Social Ventures Zone (SVZ) was designed as a place where teams of students, alumni, and innovators from the community could develop viable social enterprises that positively impact social issues. The overall aim of the SVZ is to develop and incubate the next generation of innovative and sustainable solutions to Canada’s most pressing social challenges, by investing in and funding projects based on potential impact, degree of innovation, potential of sustainability, and personal capacity. Some examples of the startups SVZ startups include:

Ability Through Action - As the war in Ukraine continues, the number of those needing mobility equipment has only increased. The influx in need has supply chains stressed, and for many these items are too cost prohibitive and expensive. We are seeking to provide them with critically needed devices as requested by aid organizations on the ground.
With the help of Goodwill Industries, Ontario Great Lakes, Rollup Solutions and Align Home Health Care, we are launching our first initiative, one that focuses on mobility. We will collect, upcycle and donate used wheelchairs. We have partnered with several non-profit and charity organizations working directly on the ground in Ukraine who will distribute the devices to the areas, and individuals, most in need.

Do Good Donuts - Do Good Donuts and Café is a non-profit social enterprise that aims to change how people thinks about employing young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. This group faces an 85% unemployment rate vs. just 15% of their peers.

Eat Impact - Eat Impact partners with farmers and distributors to rescue produce that is at risk of going to waste due to not meeting cosmetic retail standards or being in excess supply.
We deliver this perfectly fresh misfit produce to customers to help them eat better, do good and save money.
We curate a weekly selection for our boxes based on seasons and availability. Customers can customize their box to ensure they receive fruit and veg they love, and we deliver their order to their doorstep.

The SVZ also has a blog that highlights the innovation of their startups. The following is an example of their recent blog posts:

SVZ Startups are Making a Difference This Plastic-Free July (2023) - This month is Plastic Free July, and its main focus is reducing plastic waste across different aspects of our life, including fashion and food. Plastic Free July encourages individuals to become more conscious of their choices as consumers, and hopefully divert to more sustainable alternatives. In support of eco-friendly practices, a number of startups at the SVZ are actively working to promote the elimination of single-use plastics and fast fashion.
This year we spoke to three SVZ incubated founders, Sofia Bonilla of HOPE Pet Food, Erika Reyes Bolanos of Inwit, and Alison Solis of Solis to discuss Plastic Free July and the plastic-waste problem we currently face.

For more information about the blog post, please look at: https://www.torontomu.ca/svz/Blog/svz-startups-are-making-a-difference-this-plastic-free-july/

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Wellbeing & Work?:
No

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Wellbeing & Work:
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Website URL where information about the institution’s living laboratory program is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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Data source(s) and notes about the submission:
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