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Ontario Tech acknowledges the lands and people of the Mississaugas of Scugog Island First Nation.

We are thankful to be welcome on these lands in friendship. The lands we are situated on are covered by the Williams Treaties and are the traditional territory of the Mississaugas, a branch of the greater Anishinaabeg Nation, including Algonquin, Ojibway, Odawa and Pottawatomi. These lands remain home to many Indigenous nations and peoples.

We acknowledge this land out of respect for the Indigenous nations who have cared for Turtle Island, also called North America, from before the arrival of settler peoples until this day. Most importantly, we acknowledge that the history of these lands has been tainted by poor treatment and a lack of friendship with the First Nations who call them home.

This history is something we are all affected by because we are all treaty people in Canada. We all have a shared history to reflect on, and each of us is affected by this history in different ways. Our past defines our present, but if we move forward as friends and allies, then it does not have to define our future.

Learn more about Indigenous Education and Cultural Services

UOIT Futures Forum: Time to get smart on community development

University gathers experts to explore the challenges of urbanization

Panel session on mobility and transportation issues at the 2016 UOIT Forum on the Future of Smart Communities.
Panel session on mobility and transportation issues at the 2016 UOIT Forum on the Future of Smart Communities.

Should all new homes in Ontario be designed as net-zero energy structures? Could Highway 2 across Durham Region become Canada’s ‘Electric Avenue’ – as the prototype route for electric vehicle use in an urban area? These were just some of the challenges and debates arising from the University of Ontario Institute of Technology’s (UOIT) Forum on the Future of Smart Communities.

A stellar panel of experts from academia, government and leading corporations gathered May 5 to discuss strategies for developing smarter communities that are socially inclusive, innovative, digitally enabled, and economically and culturally robust.

The mass movement of people to urban centres is forcing municipalities to think about ‘smart’ development: building communities that are instrumented, integrated and intelligent. Underpinning much of smart development is the exponential rise of information communication technologies.

A full report on the findings and conclusions of the 2016 Futures Forum will be completed in the early summer.

As part of its ongoing contribution to the regional innovation ecosystem, the annual Futures Forum represents the university’s commitment to articulating a distinctive UOIT perspective on key current public policy issues and sharing its breadth of research expertise and leadership.

Futures Forum schedule:

  • 2015 – Advanced Manufacturing (summary report link)
  • 2016 – Smart Communities (full report coming Summer 2016)
  • 2017 (March) – Health and Wellness

Quick facts:

  • The world’s urban population is nearing four billion people. This number is expect to double by 2050.
  • Global energy demand is expected to increase by a third by 2035.
  • Global water demand is expected to increase by 55 per cent by 2050.
  • 96 per cent of all urbranization by 2030 will occur in the developing world.


“This event proved to be an exceptional day of sharing vibrant ideas surrounding innovation, mobility and energy, all driven by a common theme: talk needs to be converted into action as soon as possible. As urbanization accelerates, municipalities are feeling unprecedented pressure on environmental issues and their capacity to deliver services to expanding population bases. That’s why future growth and development needs to be ‘smart’.”
-Michael Rostek, Program Director, UOIT Futures Forum

Organizations represented at the 2016 Futures Forum:

  • University of Ontario Institute of Technology
    • Faculty of Business and Information Technology
    • Faculty of Energy Systems and Nuclear Science
    • Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science
    • Faculty of Social Science and Humanities
    • Office of the Vice-President, Research, Innovation and International
  • Durham College
  • Universities Canada
  • Council of Ontario Universities
  • Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada
  • Ministry of Research and Innovation
  • Ontario Centres of Excellence
  • Canadian Chamber of Commerce
  • General Motors of Canada
  • IBM
  • Ontario Power Generation
  • Veridian Connections
  • Canadian Nuclear Laboratories
  • Canadian Urban Transit Research and Innovation Consortium
  • Port Hope Area Initiative
  • Spark Centre
  • BlancRide
  • Plug‘n Drive
  • Regional Municipality of Durham
  • City of Oshawa
  • Township of Scugog
  • Town of Whitby