The partnership will focus on urban research and entrepreneurship and establish the University of Toronto School of Cities Alliance.

Posted on September 5, 2018

Tata Trusts, one of India’s largest charitable organizations, is generously supporting a partnership with U of T to foster groundbreaking research and innovation to benefit people in India.

The partnership will bring Canada and India’s leading scholars and entrepreneurs together and establish an urban research centre and an entrepreneurship hub in India. The aim is to create opportunities for scholars and innovators in both countries to share knowledge, collaborate on research initiatives in diverse fields and provide access to new markets.

“The University of Toronto is honoured to partner with Tata Trusts, one of the world’s pre-eminent philanthropic organizations,” says President Meric Gertler. “Our partnership will bring together leading experts from both countries to address some of India’s most pressing economic and social development challenges, and together we will contribute to knowledge and innovation with a global impact.”

The University of Toronto School of Cities Alliance in India

With support from Tata Trusts, U of T will establish the University of Toronto School of Cities Alliance in India – a network of Canadian and Indian researchers who will work together to address the country’s most pressing urban issues. As part of the alliance, U of T and Tata Trusts will create an urban research centre where scholars will combine resources and share expertise.

“This new centre will translate academic research into high-impact solutions for low-resource settings and address issues that have socio-economic and environmental significance,” said Kumar.

Building on research insight with support for entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurs are first out of the gate when it comes to using new research to solve real-world problems

U of T and Tata Trusts are also creating an entrepreneurship centre – bridging U of T and India’s network of entrepreneurs and innovators, and making it easier to exchange ideas, capital and resources.

“It’s often entrepreneurs and their startups who are first out of the gate when it comes to taking new research and using it to solve people’s real-world problems,” said Ted Sargent, U of T’s vice-president international. “The entrepreneurship centre will strengthen ties between our innovation and entrepreneurship ecosystems, creating an environment where new ideas can thrive.”

U of T and Tata Trusts have a long history of partnership

Tata Trusts has collaborated with U of T over many years, working with researchers across the University to tackle health care, water, energy and poverty challenges and to learn from one another. This includes a Tata-funded initiative from Levente Diosady, professor emeritus of food engineering in the Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering, who developed iron- and iodine-enriched salt that is helping to reduce rates of anemia and improve the lives of people living in Uttar Pradesh and other states across India.

In 2017, U of T, Tata Trusts, and the Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay co-hosted a Smart Cities Workshop led by Mark Fox, distinguished professor of urban systems engineering in the Faculty of Applied Science & Engineering. The workshop provided the groundwork to identify issues that will be explored by the School of Cities Alliance.

Partnering with Tata Trusts is part of U of T’s ongoing commitment to grow its global network of organizations, researchers and students, creating reciprocal opportunities for learning and innovation around the world while ensuring the wide-reaching impact of life-changing research.

Republished from a story by Romi Levine at U of T News.