You are now in the main content area

Meet the Provost and Vice-President, Academic

Roberta Iannacito-Provenzano in a black blazer, sitting in an office
Roberta Iannacito-Provenzano

Photo by Alyssa K. Faoro

Roberta Iannacito-Provenzano is provost and vice-president, academic at Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU) and a full professor in the Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures in the Faculty of Arts. 

She earned her PhD in Italian Studies at the University of Toronto. Her research interests include southern Italian dialectology, Molisan dialect literature, theatre and plurilingualism, and how ethnicity and identity are represented on social media. She has published several articles, a monograph and an edited collection in these areas. Over the last several years, she has been studying Italian food, branding and language; Italian food representations on social media and the notion of authenticity and Italian food products in the diasporic context. 

With her colleague, Gabriele Scardellato, Roberta organized an international conference titled Italian Foodways Worldwide in 2017 and co-edited Italian Foodways Worldwide: The Dispersal of Italian Cuisine(s) (Soleil, 2019). With Lorella Di Cintio (Interior Design, TMU), she is co-editing a volume titled Domestic Goods: Silence Speaks in Our Objects, Clothing, Keepsakes and Interiors. 

Roberta first joined TMU as vice-provost, faculty affairs in 2020 from York University, where she held progressive academic administrative roles including undergraduate program director, chair of a large department, and both the associate dean, programs and associate dean, faculty affairs portfolios in the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies. 

With extensive experience in academic labour relations, in her vice-provost, faculty affairs role, Roberta advocated for equitable hiring and evaluation policies and developed, with a great team, a robust and well-received suite of initiatives dedicated to enhancing faculty professional development. Her belief in open communication, collegiality and collaboration is demonstrated through her commitment to professional development and accommodation.

In addition to serving as provost, Roberta is one of the three executive co-chairs of both the Presidential Implementation Committee to Confront Anti-Black Racism and the TRC Strategic Working Group at TMU.

Notably, she was the president of the Canadian Association for Italian Studies (2020-2022), the vice-president of the Italian-Canadian Archives Project (2019-2021) and has been the recipient of numerous academic and professional awards, including the CIBPA Award for Professional Excellence for service to the community in October 2023. 

Fluent in English, French and Italian, Roberta also holds a Certificate in Conflict and Dispute Resolution from York University, and a Labour Relations Certificate jointly from TRSM and Lancaster House. 

Provost responsibilities include:

  • Overseeing the academic program
  • Setting and implementing the university’s budget
  • Enhancing student life, engagement, and skills
  • Supporting scholarly, research, and creative activities
  • Proposing and implementing innovative technologies
  • Establishing outreach and access initiatives
  • Cultivating experiential learning opportunities
  • Developing and presenting faculty achievement awards

From Roberta