The 315 Bloor St building of the Munk School

Why Munk One?

Munk One Director Don Kingsbury sits on lawn with Munk One students

The Munk One program connects big ideas with global challenges.

A Munk One student is someone who wants to have impact – someone who wants to make a difference – in the global community. The program offers students a unique opportunity to participate in collaborative and engaged scholarship. Munk One students learn by doing, taking an approach that is both creative and systematic as we consider some of the most pressing and complicated issues facing the world. 

Introduction to the Munk One Program

Munk One at the Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy is an interdisciplinary academic program in global affairs for first-year students. It offers students the opportunity to deepen their understanding of global justice, innovations for global solutions, and social and economic inequality. Participating in Munk One ignites intellectual curiosity, elevates knowledge of world affairs, and connects first-year students to the civic-minded Munk School community. 

Munk One is an application-based, selective academic program that consists of four half-credit courses (2.0 credits in total) and is limited to an enrollment of 25 students. Students must submit an online application with a resumé and supplementary application material immediately after gaining admission to the University of Toronto. Newly admitted students in the Faculty of Arts & Science (St. George campus) are eligible for admission. Students who demonstrate strong intellectual vitality, commitment to public service, and integrity are encouraged to apply. We welcome students from diverse backgrounds, experiences, and academic interests. 

Students enrolled in Munk One belong to a vibrant, dynamic, and diverse community of Munk undergraduates as well as graduate students in the Munk School’s two professional graduate programs. Courses in Munk One are taught by top scholars and award-winning faculty. Munk One students engage with distinguished Munk Fellows such as current and former Canadian ambassadors, members of the federal and provincial public service, private sector innovators, influential journalists, and global affairs and public policy leaders from around the world. Students are encouraged to participate in the vast array of academic and professional opportunities offered at the Munk School, such as conferences, symposia, seminars, co-curricular activities, and faculty-led research projects. Munk One students are mentored by Munk One alumni and also engage in academic programming typically offered only to graduate students, such as a case competition.

The objective of the Munk One’s Global Justice stream is to orient students to issues of socioeconomic divisions, poverty, geopolitical complexities, global security, human rights, and sustainable development. The courses are curated and sequenced to build students’ academic skills and knowledge of topics related to global justice. Each of the four courses are delivered as small group seminars with guided discussion and scholarly activities moderated by Munk faculty. The program also features experiential learning and opportunities for beyond-the-classroom study.

In the first semester, students enroll in two complementary courses which build the theoretical foundation necessary to understand and analyze issues of global justice. MUN 100: Global Innovation explores innovation’s role as a key driver of economic growth, population health, and societal success. Using contemporary and historical cases from across the globe, this course asks: When does innovation occur? How do we recognize moments of innovation?  Who benefits from innovation?  How can we foster equitable innovation?  In MUN 110: Peace, Conflict and Justice in the Indo-Pacific, students focus on a specific region and explore issues in that area related to sustainable development, geopolitical conflicts, social inequality, and regional stability. Students also propose policy pathways designed to promote sustainable prosperity in the Indo-Pacific. 

In the second semester, students apply the knowledge and tools gained in the first semester to specific challenges. In MUN 130: Climate, Energy, and Power, students explore the relationship between energy practices and social and economic power. This class considers the inequality caused by climate change, emergent energy technologies, and the institutional and regulatory conditions that shape national, regional, and international environmental policies. MUN 140: Design for Social Change and Inclusion is Munk One’s capstone course. In this hands-on, experiential learning class, students tackle real-world problems in partnership with an organization working on global challenges. 

Courses in the Munk One Global Justice stream are particularly relevant for students who are interested in pursuing further studies in the areas of Peace, Conflict, and Justice. Munk One also serves as a gateway to other undergraduate courses offered at the Munk School, such as Public Policy and Governance, Contemporary Asian Studies at the Asian Institute, Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies, and the Centre for the Study of the United States. It may also interest students who wish to pursue studies in International Relations, Political Science, and other disciplines with a focus on international affairs.