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International Doctoral Clusters

An International Doctoral Cluster (IDC) is a research agreement between the University of Toronto and other international academic partners, which connects talent from around the world with the aim of facilitating transformational innovation and ideas. IDCs create opportunities for PhD students to study at partners institutions under either a co-supervision arrangement. Our goal is to strengthen existing and build new partnerships, enhance research outcomes, and to facilitate global learning opportunities.

The following IDCs have been launched to date by the University of Toronto and partner institutions:

Next Generation Power Semiconductor Devices and Integrated Circuits

Academic Partner: Hong Kong University of Science & Technology (HKUST)

Coordinating U of T Principal Investigator: Wai Tung, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering. 3 other U of T Principal Investigators.

This IDC focuses on the study of Next Generation Power Semiconductor Devices and Integrated Circuits. Working in partnership with principal investigators at HKUST, advanced electronics will be developed that can efficiently deliver, convert, and utilize electricity in an ever increasingly electrical energy based global economy. This is particularly important particularly important as the world transitions to a low-carbon economy which will require advanced power electronics.

IDC Approved: December 1, 2017

Precision Medicine

Academic Partner: Zhejiang University

Coordinating U of T Principal Investigator: Leah Cowen, Chair, MolGen, Medicine. 13 other U of T Principal Investigators.

This IDC focused on Precision Medicine has been developed with Zhejiang University. This alliance aims to advance our understanding of the genetic basis for human disease in order to promote innovations in personalized and precision medicine. The partnership will leverage complementary strengths and resources (e.g. diverse patient populations) with the goal of developing a greater understanding of the genetic basis for human disease.

IDC Approved: December 1, 2017

Cybersecurity

Academic Partner: National University of Singapore (NUS)

Coordinating U of T Principal Investigator: Deepa Kundur and David Lie, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering. 3 other U of T Principal Investigators.

The University of Toronto is collaborating with National University of Singapore on cyber security research through doctoral exchanges. This partnership aims to advance cyber security capabilities in an interconnected, global society through collaboration on a topics including cloud-based computing security, network information theory, quantum cryptography, and statistical signal processing.

IDC Approved: December 1, 2017

Chemistry

Academic Partners: University of Muenster, RWTH Aachen, Technical University of Munich, Ludwig Maximillian University, Technical University of Berlin, University of Heidelberg

Coordinating U of T Principal Investigators: Robert Batey and Mark Lautens, Chemistry, Faculty of Arts and Science. 6 other U of T Principal Investigators.

U of T is partnering with multiple German Universities in the fields of organic and materials chemistry. Partner universities have complementary strengths to the University of Toronto’s Chemistry department and together can provide graduate students with opportunities for global engagement and exposure to innovations in the field.

IDC Approved: December 1, 2017

Global Urban Biological Invasions Consortium

Academic Partners:
Stellenbosch University (co-lead w/ U of T on an emerging global consortium of 35 member institutions in 19 countries)

Coordinating U of T Principal Investigator: Marc W Cadotte, Dept. of Biological Sciences, University of Toronto Scarborough. 4 other U of T Principal Investigators.

This IDC focuses on research into global urban biological invasions. The partnership, in the context of global urban environments, aims to advance our understanding of maintaining native biodiversity and protecting the benefits humans gain from balanced ecosystems.

IDC Approved: February 1, 2018

Global Radio Astrophysics

Academic Partners: Max Planck, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Peking University, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, University of Bonn

Coordinating U of T Principal Investigator: Ue-Li Pen, Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics & Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics. 4 other U of T Principal Investigators.

The University of Toronto has partnered with Max Planck, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, Peking University, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, and the University of Bonn on a Global Radio Astrophysics IDC, with the goal of advancing our understanding on the origin of our universe.

IDC Approved: February 1, 2018

Practices in Commentary

Academic Partner: Goethe University

Coordinating U of T Principle Investigator: Markus Stock, German Languages & Literatures, Faculty of Arts and Sciences. 5 other U of T Principal Investigators.

This IDC is focused on the study of practices in commentary in the historical perspective of the pre-modern and early modern world. The goal is to understand the religious, literary, and scientific uses of commentary coupled with the methods of how commentary is produced.

One-year seed funding for IDC Approved: February 1, 2018

Queer Youth Resilience

Academic Partners: 24 internationally networked academic institutions in Canada, USA, UK and Mexico, working in close partnership with community organizations.

Coordinating U of T Principle Investigator: Prof. Shelley Craig, Faculty of Social Work. 6 other U of T Principal Investigators.

This IDC leverages a SSHRC partnership grant to develop a network of researchers focused on Gender & Sexual Minority Youth, and will look at how to close critical gaps in knowledge regarding the impact of information and communication technologies use on Gender & Sexual Minority Youth wellbeing and on risk mitigation. This IDC will enable global training opportunities for doctoral students within this network by supporting their mobility.

IDC Approved: September 1, 2018

Tripartite Collaboration in Public Health and Cities 

Academic Partners: Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) and Utrecht University (UU)

Coordinating U of T Principle Investigator: Prof. Greg Evans, Dept. of Chemical Engineering. At least, 9 other faculty members from Public Health, Civil Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Earth Sciences, Geography, Political Science and Mechanical & Industrial Engineering.

The IDC focuses on modifiable factors related to urban living to promote the development of sustainable healthy cities that can bring out the full potential of their residents. The research outcomes address emerging global public health challenges arising from how we live, work and interact in urban centers. There are two major sub-themes within this IDC, one related to public health and the other to urban design.

IDC Approved: February 1, 2019

The Atlantic Study of Islam and Muslims  

Academic Partners: School of Oriental & African Studies, University of London (SOAS), Northwestern University, Sciences Po, Le Centre national de la recherche scientifique (CNRS) and various partners in Europe and the Middle East.

Coordinating U of T Principle Investigator: Prof. Anver Emon, Canada Research Chair in Religion, Pluralism and the Rule of Law and Director, Institute of Islamic Studies (IIS). 2 other U of T Principal Investigators are engaged in this IDC.

This IDC focuses on the comparative global study of:

  • Islam and the politics of secularism and multiculturalism in Canada and Europe; and
  • Radicalization, counter-radicalization, and the intersection of policing and radical politics in Europe, Middle East and North America

The two strands of research reflect ongoing debates across the Atlantic in both the academic and public policy sectors. The two strands of research complement each other given that both concern the academic study of Islam and Muslims in relation to systemic matters of state and governance.

IDC Approved: February 1, 2019