Creating knowledge and fostering creativity

ushageorge-1by Usha George, Interim Vice-President, Research & Innovation

Ryerson’s academic plan has set out a distinct path for growth—with one of its key components defined as increasing the excellence, intensity and impact of our scholarly, research and creative (SRC) activities.

At Ryerson, we believe in a broad and inclusive definition of research. We value basic and applied research while also placing importance on creative activities such as exhibitions, theatrical performances and other creative works. Our faculty members have the opportunity to choose from a wide range of research areas, as long as their research program meets the standards of ethics review, falls within the mandate of the university, and promotes public good.

An essential component of a faculty member’s work at Ryerson, research is central to our growing reputation. It fosters a culture of innovation and creativity. Ryerson prides itself on being a community-engaged university, and a city builder. We want to address real-world problems by responding to societal needs and contributing to the technological, cultural, social and economic well-being of society.

Research also helps us as academics. Through research, we stay current, infusing fresh materials in the courses we teach. The very act of creating knowledge is exciting. It gives us a sense of accomplishment and mastery. Sharing one’s research with students provides them with the opportunity to experience the thrills and challenges of creating knowledge, generating the kind of engagement and exceptional experiences we strive to achieve at Ryerson for our students. Moreover, as researchers we also benefit from student perspectives; in particular, our graduate students are bringing a fresh perspective to our high-level research.

In professional disciplines, research provides us with evidence to inform policy and practice. The integral relationship between theory, research and practice has been well established. Knowledge translation and mobilization of our research creates that important link between research and application by disseminating the newly created knowledge and engaging the end users.

Application is crucial to closing the innovation loop—it breaks down silos and brings us into our communities, where we see the real impact of our work as we continue to create knowledge and build solid relationships that strengthen our position as an engaged, innovative institution.

Innovation a topic of interest during pre-budget consultations with Finance Minister Bill Morneau.

by Wendy Cukier, Vice-President, Research & Innovation

During his stop in Toronto for pre-budget consultations with stakeholders, Finance Minister Bill Morneau heard from numerous experts on the topic of innovation, infrastructure and the environment at the Canadian Public Policy Forum. I participated as a panelist focusing on innovation along with Eme Onuoha, CIO Xerox Services and John Ruffolo, CEO OMERS Ventures. We, along with Minister Morneau, agreed that investing in a strong innovation ecosystem in Canada is necessary to create a foundation for economic prosperity.

Continue reading Innovation a topic of interest during pre-budget consultations with Finance Minister Bill Morneau.

Changing the Game with Analytics

by Wendy Cukier, Vice-President, Research & Innovation

Just this week, Ryerson University sponsored SportsHack, bringing together teams of hackers to compete in developing innovative sports-related software solutions. Sponsored by Ryerson, IBM and We Are Wearables, the CFL joined SportsHack as a development partner and provided data to competitors with the goal of building apps or software in the areas of fan engagement, promoting ticket sales and social media. Continue reading Changing the Game with Analytics

New partnership to promote research, technological innovation and entrepreneurship

by Wendy Cukier, Vice-President, Research & Innovation

Ryerson is pleased to partner with Prince Edward/Lennox & Addington Community Futures Development Corporation (PELA CFDC), First Stone Venture Partners (FSVP), and the Eastern Ontario Regional Network (EORN) to promote research, technological innovation, attract and accelerate start-ups and advance economic development in the region. Continue reading New partnership to promote research, technological innovation and entrepreneurship

More than technology push is needed to drive innovation

Ryerson partners with industry, government and community organizations to make things happen. Our unique cross-disciplinary approach not only drives the creation of new technologies, products, services, and ventures, but also examines the drivers and impediments to change in existing organizations.

Research in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) is necessary butinsufficient. We need social sciences and humanities research to better understand user needs, organizational drivers, factors shaping personal preferences and behaviour, aesthetic and content design, as well as policy, legal, and ethical issues. We need to understand the demand side as well as the supply side to drive innovation. Continue reading More than technology push is needed to drive innovation