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Social Innovation and Action Research Award Recipients

The Social Innovation and/or Action Scholarly Research and Creative (SRC) Award is a university-wide, annual award that recognizes excellence in SRC initiatives done in collaboration with community partners which lead to the strengthening of civil society either through program or policy impact(s). Projects may include a range of initiatives, such as corporate social responsibility, public private partnerships, new ventures, technological innovations, or process improvements within existing non-profit or government organizations in areas such as poverty alleviation, education, health, human rights, diversity and inclusion, violence prevention, peace building, sustainability, capacity building and/or engagement.

Award recipient(s) will receive a certificate of recognition and a monetary award of $2,000 as a one-time payment (subject to applicable deductions).

Key criteria: Scholarly, research and creative social innovation action

2022 recipient

Linda Zhang

School of Interior Design, The Creative School

Linda Zhang’s SRC exemplifies the fundamental principles of social innovation through her engagement with relevant stakeholders and affected communities to innovate and deploy effective solutions to address systemic challenges. Since 2018, she has led a number of initiatives that put new technologies in the hands of community members as a creative means of fostering civic participation and stewardship of the built environment. Her commitment to social action is reflected in how she has developed creative ways to ensure that community members have access to both the data and the technology to promote collective empowerment, sound stewardship and social action in Toronto’s Chinatown. She currently leads a New Frontiers in Research Fund exploration grant to promote community resilience, reduce stress and stigma, and support affected groups in Chinatown during COVID-19 pandemic recovery as well as ongoing displacement using virtual reality co-creation and architectural design.

Past recipients

  • Jonathon Anderson
    School of Interior Design, Faculty of Communication and Design
  • Sara Edge
    Department of Geography and Environmental Studies, Faculty of Arts
  • Rupa Banerjee
    Human Resources and Organizational Behaviour, Ted Rogers School of Management
  • Wendy Cukier
    Department of Entrepreneurship and Strategy, Ted Rogers School of Management
  • Ben Barry
    School of Fashion, Faculty of Communication and Design
  • Josephine Wong
    Daphne Cockwell School of Nursing, Faculty of Community Services