Care program
Climate change, energy & environment, Munk School

$10.44-million grant enables Sciences Po, U of T, UBC and Guelph to shape the next generation of environmental changemakers

Under the innovative CARE program, the four-university collaboration across Canada and France is designed to accelerate action on the climate crisis.

Meaningful opportunities for cultural exchange

The program is made possible with a five-year, $10.44-million (€7.2-million) grant from Fondation DRG, which supports meaningful opportunities for cultural exchange between Canada and France.

screen captured quote “Thanks to the generosity of Fondation DRG and the collaborative spirit of our university partners, this innovative program will marshal top students and scholars from across  Canada and France to help make our infrastructure and ecosystems more resilient,” said U of T President Meric Gertler. “Universities play a vital role in seeking solutions to the world’s greatest challenges, and U of T is proud to partner with these leading institutions to help create a more sustainable and secure future for us all.”

Spearheaded by Sciences Po and its Paris School of International Affairs, the program is the first of its kind designed to speed up action on the triple planetary crisis of climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution through in-depth academic, policy and leadership training – while remaining carbon neutral. 


The power of collaboration

CARE features four components: a multi-campus climate leadership course; interdisciplinary courses run in collaboration between the universities; applied learning, including research projects and policy case competitions both on campus and in the field; and advocacy and communications to maximize impact and to disseminate good practices. Scholarships will support master-level studies in related fields while fellowships will enable student and faculty exchanges.

The Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy will be the lead representative for U of T in the CARE partnership. The school will involve graduate students and faculty from its programs as well as other relevant departments and schools in the Faculty of Arts & Science, including the departments of Geography & Planning and Political Science and the schools of the Environment and Cities.


A leader in sustainability

U of T is a postsecondary leader in the field of sustainability. It is ranked the most sustainable university in the world; its Sustainability Office is on an ongoing mission to embed climate-conscious practices into the fabric of the university’s operations; and the subject itself is developed and implemented in a broad range of academic programs and on-campus activities. The topic also appears widely in U of T’s faculty research and teaching programs, such as its Master of Global Affairs and Master of Public Policy at the Munk School, and the Master of Environment & Sustainability at the School of the Environment.

screen captured quote 2“As world-class institutions with globally recognized programs, sharing our resources and pooling our strengths will drive desperately needed momentum as the clock ticks on the climate crisis,” said Melanie Woodin, dean of U of T’s Faculty of Arts & Science. “The faculty is privileged to be able to contribute expertise via this forward-thinking CARE Program and, in turn, have our studies, research and teachings enriched by the work of scholars across Canada and France who are driven by a common goal.”

CARE’s objective is to increase knowledge, innovation, leadership and community across the field by focusing on cross-cultural exchanges, local knowledge systems and solutions, and the communities most vulnerable to climate change.

“Schools of global affairs and public policy play a key role in bridging the gap between scientific expertise, public understanding and political will,” said Peter Loewen, director of U of T’s Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy. “By training the next generations of policymakers and leaders and by developing mechanisms that leverage resources towards climate action, we can become decisive actors in the battle against climate change.”

Driving cross-cultural collaboration

While the four French and Canadian universities form the foundation of the CARE Program, the initiative plans to expand to include other higher education partners around the world, with the goal of reaching over 2,100 students within five years – with future students, faculty and citizens benefitting indirectly from the tools and materials developed under the program. 

screen captured quote 3“This multi-university global partnership provides a vital step in propelling us towards a more sustainable future – a key priority of U of T’s Defy Gravity campaign,” said David Palmer, vice-president, advancement for U of T. “This gift from Fondation DRG speaks to the power of philanthropy to help drive cross-cultural collaboration, deepen connections and advance education. By weaving together these intellectual communities, students and faculty can spark new ideas, find new links and scale innovations, helping to produce the deep and lasting changes critical to the health of humanity.”

Explore related campaign priorities: Create a sustainable future Support student success

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