You are now in the main content area

Toronto Metropolitan University awarded $98.6M to lead migrant integration research program by the Government of Canada

The Canada First Research Excellence Fund will lead to a new understanding of immigration challenges and opportunities in the 21st century
April 28, 2023

Montreal –On April 28, the federal government announced Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU) has been awarded $98.6 million from the Canada First Research Excellence Fund (CFREF) to lead an innovative new research program. Migrant Integration in the Mid-21st Century: Bridging Divides is a seven-year interdisciplinary initiative investigating the challenges and opportunities of migrant integration that builds upon TMU’s strength and leadership in immigration and technology.

“As a global leader in immigration and settlement studies with a long history of national and international engagement, TMU, together with our partners, is well-positioned to guide this important initiative,” said TMU President and Vice-Chancellor Mohamed Lachemi. “This funding from the Government of Canada will advance the country’s research on migrant integration towards valuable knowledge and outcomes that can be integrated into global immigration policies.”

The program’s unique interdisciplinary research design will drive leadership in the areas of citizenship and civic participation, the future of work, health care and the responsible and ethical use of advanced technologies, including artificial intelligence, which is changing the way we work, live and interact. This intersectional approach will further the modernization of global immigration policies and contribute to building communities and urban centres that are equitable, resilient and inclusive to migrants.

“Bridging Divides will address the global challenges of immigration and migration, offering critical insights during this time of rapid social, economic and digital transformation,” said Vice-President, Research and Innovation Steven N. Liss. “By leveraging the breadth and depth of our research expertise in areas including immigration, technology, mobilization and community health to remove barriers, together, we can build inclusive, prosperous societies.”

The novel research program is led by Scientific Director Anna Triandafyllidou, who holds the Canada Excellence Research Chair in Migration and Integration at TMU, and includes three academic and research partners equally engaged in immigrant integration: Concordia University, the University of Alberta and The University of British Columbia. Their joint research will lead to new insights and usable knowledge in four thematic streams: Immigrant Health and Well-Being, Employment and Lifelong Learning, Place and Infrastructure, and Citizenship and Participation.


Key Statistics:

  • The CFREF grant provides $98.6 million of funding over seven years.
  • Bridging Divides includes 25 research leaders and more than 100 scholars.
  • Bridging Divides involves 27 core partners, including four academic institutions and more than 200 organizations.
  • Bridging Divides will provide 1,500 opportunities to train highly qualified personnel.
  • According to Statistics Canada, in 2022, Canada welcomed 437,000 new permanent residents and 1.2 million temporary migrants, including international students.

Learn more about the Migrant Integration in the Mid-21st Century: Bridging Divides project

The Canada First Research Excellence Fund (CFREF) (external link)  helps Canadian postsecondary institutions excel in research on the international stage while supporting Canada’s economic growth.




About Toronto Metropolitan University*
Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU), formerly known as Ryerson University, is Canada’s leader in innovative, career-oriented education. Urban, culturally diverse and inclusive, the university is home to more than 46,000 students, including 2,900 Master’s and PhD students, 4,000 faculty and staff, and 225,000 alumni worldwide. For more information, visit

*In April 2022, the university renamed and began a new chapter.

Media inquiries:
Lindsey Craig
PR & Communications Specialist
Toronto Metropolitan University