The Project

University Worlds is an interdisciplinary SSHRC funded project based at the University of Toronto that explores a deceptively simple question: what is a university?

Student and faculty researchers follow this question into lecture halls, boardrooms, student group meetings, planning documents, and archives to develop a complex but vivid portrait of Toronto’s largest academic institution.

Our goal is to explore the everyday experience of people who work or study at the university, and to shine a bright light on the workings of power. This no simple matter as the University of Toronto is a massive institution. It stretches across three campuses with over 61,000 students and 27,000 full- and part-time staff. The two key research themes are student experience, highlighting issues of diversity and the actions students take to challenge and shape university worlds; and university mandates, which extend far beyond research and teaching to matters such as real estate development and financial management.