What we do

The Urban Policy Lab offers a wide array of teaching and training initiatives, including student fellowships, skills development workshops, networking and mentorship programs, and experiential learning opportunities.

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Student fellowships

Every year, the Lab awards graduate fellowships to a select group of Munk School students. Fellows comprise the Lab’s student leadership team, help coordinate the extracurricular programming, and participate in work-integrated learning placements with partner organizations. Past partners include the City of Toronto, Evergreen Canada, and the Pembina Institute.

Case competitions

The Lab organizes an annual Urban Policy Case Competition in which teams of MPP and MGA students compete to develop solutions to an urban policy challenge. More than 100 students have participated, tackling issues such as the “first and last mile” mobility problem in Toronto, transit-oriented development, and local economic development and COVID recovery. Judges participate from a diverse group of public, private, and not-for-profit organizations.

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Four students sit at a table with a two projections of the UPL logo on the wall behind them

Skills development workshops

The Lab has organized and delivered more than two dozen skills and professional development workshops, attended by more than 650 Munk School students, on topics such as: public consultation, urban planning, strategic foresight, municipal budgeting, infrastructure planning, regional growth management, project management, and service design.

Experiential learning

The Lab designs experiential learning opportunities that encourage students to get out of the classroom and into the community. Our "Munk in the City" initiative, for example, motivated students to see first-hand the challenges faced by residents across Toronto, and consider the urban policy solutions that can address these issues.

Urban Policy Lab walking tour
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Career planning and mentorship

The Lab arranges mentorship and career planning conversations with alumni and outside practitioners, and creates opportunities for students to grow their professional network. Our annual speed networking event has connected Munk students with over 100 urban policy professionals across the Greater Toronto region. And our new mentorship program has helped students cultivate meaningful relationships with more than two dozen leaders in the field.