Dr. Robert Luke appointed Vice-President, Research & Innovation  

Photo of Dr. Robert Luke
Thursday, August 4, 2016 - 4:00am

OCAD University has appointed Dr. Robert Luke as Vice-President, Research & Innovation, effective August 29, 2016. Reporting to and working closely with the President as a member of the executive team, Luke is responsible for the strategic leadership, implementation and expansion of the university's research and research-creation capacity, including its research infrastructure and the development of academic business and incubation initiatives.

With over 15 years of experience working in progressive and growth-oriented academic environments, Luke is a recognized leader in research, innovation and research administration. He currently holds the role of Vice-President, Research and Innovation at George Brown College, where he created a nationally recognized applied research department that has raised over $80 million in funding support from government and industry sources. George Brown College was named top research college in Canada by Research InfoSource last year for its achievements in funding and partnerships. During his time there, Luke also oversaw the department responsible for e-learning and teaching innovation.

“With his ability to engage partners and his consensus-building approach, Dr. Luke will be an asset to OCAD University's growing research portfolio, supporting an increasing number of undergraduate and graduate students and faculty in research, creative activities, innovation and entrepreneurship. I am delighted to have Dr. Luke join us as the university's Vice-President, Research & Innovation,” said Dr. Sara Diamond, President and Vice-Chancellor, OCAD University.

Luke holds a BA from the University of Northern British Columbia, an MA from Queen's University, as well as a PhD from the University of Toronto. He maintains an active research program in human-centred design of technology, accessibility and health systems for patient empowerment. In 2012, he was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for contributions to Canadian education and innovation.





Examining play as an essential component of Futures thinking; with Bill Buxton, Microsoft Senior Researcher, The evolution of technologies project—past, present and future.



The aim of the research paper is to present case studies of the introduction of Ludic Foresight to interdisciplinary groups, where game and role-playing are used to create artifacts from the future that can stimulate ideas for innovation and problem solving. Ultimately, the aim of such exercises is to engage a wide range of actors in foresight thinking by both engaging in simple but immersive simulation via play, and generating concepts via models that make contemplation of possible futures more tangible, engaging, and provocative. The process, value and limitations of this approach in design thinking and foresight practices will be discussed.  


Design Methodology Approach

Teams of ideally mixed experiences, roles and points of view are asked to play structured games combining social, technological, economic, environmental, political and values- based trends, with assigned identities, missions and resource constrains, in order to elicit new thinking towards problem solving. As a multi-stage process, the games typically entail rapid, lightweight future scenario development via structured role playing followed by artifact creation—typically a model of an ideal product, process or other type of solution called for by both teams’ assigned internal identities and missions and assigned external conditions—allowing groups of divergent opions and standpoints to come together to create affordances, converged interpretations of specifications for a future state, and resolutions to present day and possible future tensions.


Debriefs as well as facilitator observation during past game play suggest the game play methods we have applied, even with some variation, provide an effective means of 1) “leveling the playing field” of seniority and experience among members of a team playing together, removing a frequent barrier to both free exchange of viewpoints and interpretation of possible futures that crops up in business settings, 2) fusing teams of players that had never met face-to-face quickly into a cohesive working group, with the game as a social object on which to focus a common understanding and vision, 3) creating a narrative vehicle on which teams can develop rich stories of imagined futures, and 4) providing a driver for development of a communication artifact that both enables co-creation by team members, and opening the possibility for refinement and iteration through the artifact as prototype.

Research Limitations

Resistance due to lack of reliability, and uncertainty of ROI from the exercise. 

Research Implications

Value of changing roles and perspective — giving permission to alternative views, and the value of playfulness in lowering barriers to co-created foresight.

Practical / Managerial Implications

Findings may provide a foundation for injecting playfulness as a catalyst for strategic foresight.

Originality / Value

As foresight and future studies contemplates the reliability of its process and findings, it might also look towards the value of group dynamics and creative elasticity as critical components in their own right. This paper discusses the imperative to foster decision-making capabilities within a group that is open-minded and able to think laterally. 



YIRCoF’11: Yeditepe International Research Conference on Foresight, August 2011

Tuesday, August 12, 2014 - 5:30pm

Ethics Out of the Box: examining ethical issues in art & design research

Wednesday, May 25, 2016 - 2:00pm to 6:30pm

Ethics out of the box: examining ethical issues in art and design research" is a symposium that brings together an exceptional group of researchers/ artists/ practitioners/ administrators to discuss their perspectives on ethical issues unique to art and design research.

Moderator:  Nancy Walton, RN, PhD (Director, e-learning, Ryerson University and Chair, Research Ethics Board, Women's College Hospital)

Keynote: "There will be a happy meeting”: Participant Engagement, Practice-based Research and Ethics in an Art + Design University—supporting risk-takers 
Glen Lowry, PhD (Assistant Dean, Faculty of Culture and Community, and Chair, Research Ethics Board, Emily Carr University of Art and Design)

Theme: “Examining intersections of research ethics in the pedagogical ecology”

Ethics and Collaborative Research in Language Documentation, Keren Rice, PhD (University of Toronto)               

Dilemmas in Research Ethics and Pedagogy, Suzanne Stein, PhD cand (OCAD University)  

Art and Antagonism: Negotiating the ethics of discomfort in the classroom, Allison Rowe, PhD cand (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)       

Panel Discussion

Theme: “The role of research ethics in art and design”                  

Bringing the Riots In: considerations on the use of activist culture within artistic practice, video presentation, Syrus Marcus Ware, PhD cand (York University)

Internet Research Ethics: What (Art & Design) Researchers Should Know, Yukari Seko, PhD (University of Guelph)              

Why Are You Asking Me? The Reporter/Researcher, Joyce Smith, PhD (Ryerson University)     

Panel discussion                           

Morning refreshments and light lunch to be served.

Please register here

Venue & Address: 
320/ 3F OCAD University (Richmond St. Campus), 205 Richmond Street West, Toronto

Dr. Gerald McMaster named Canada Research Chair

Photo of Dr. Gerald McMaster by Sebastian Kriete
Tuesday, February 9, 2016 - 3:00pm

Groundbreaking curator, author, artist and educator Dr. Gerald McMaster has been named Tier 1 Canada Research Chair (CRC) in Indigenous Visual Culture & Curatorial Practice at OCAD University.

 “My position will enable me to be part of a uniquely vibrant community of students, researchers and creators,” said McMaster. “I am looking forward to learning from and working with them as I seek to expand knowledge of the ways transnational contact has affected artistic expression among Indigenous people, as well as the influence of those expressions on non-Indigenous societies.”

McMaster has held prestigious curatorial positions at the Canadian Museum of Civilization, the Art Gallery of Ontario and the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian. In 2006 he was appointed Officer of the Order of Canada.

“We are grateful to the Government of Canada for supporting us in this unprecedented scholarship of Indigenous art history told through Indigenous voices,” said Dr. Sara Diamond, President and Vice-Chancellor. “To be the first art and design university to receive a Tier 1 CRC appointment is recognition of OCAD University’s strong research agenda.”

McMaster’s work will examine the ways in which cultures interact, influencing and inspiring one another. How can Indigenous artists engage with the non-Indigenous world while maintaining their difference? How does the vitality of Indigenous voice express and contribute knowledge to the global conversation on climate? How did Indigenous artists and cultures view their colonizers in the context of their art?

Born near North Battleford, Saskatchewan, McMaster (Plains Cree/Member of the Siksika First Nation) studied at the Institute of American Indian Art and the Minneapolis College of Art and Design, receiving his MA in Anthropology at Carleton University, Ottawa. He completed his doctorate at the University of Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis, Theory and Interpretation under renowned cultural theorist Mieke Bal. 

McMaster served as Canadian Commissioner for the Venice Biennale and Artistic Director of the Biennale of Sydney, Australia. He is currently collaborating on three major international projects in Europe, South America and Australia.

McMaster also teaches undergraduate courses in OCAD University’s Indigenous Visual Culture program (INVC) and leads a graduate seminar in exhibition issues in the Criticism & Curatorial Practice program.

OCAD University would like to thank the Canada Foundation for Innovation for providing infrastructure support for McMaster’s lab.

3 Minute Thesis Competition

Wednesday, March 9, 2016 - 2:00pm to 6:00pm

Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition is a fast paced and exciting competition that challenges graduate students to distill the significance of their thesis work/research project to three minutes for a panel of judges and a diverse audience.

The Competition will be held on March 9th beginning at 9am sharp in the Student Gallery at 52 MCCAUL STREET. 


OCAD U Master's students who have  an approved Thesis  or Major  Research Project (MRP) proposal on file with the Office of Graduate Studies.
Deadline for Submissions is: Wednesday March  2nd, 2016


In three minutes or  less convey the  essence  and  significance of your  Thesis  or  MRP research using  only  a single slide. The best presentation will go on to represent OCAD University at the provincial finals to be hosted at Wilfred Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario, on Thursday April 14, 2016.


  • The   top   presenter  will   receive $750  as  well   as  training  and travel support to  attend the regional competition at Wilfred Laurier  in April.
  • The  runner up  will  receive $500 and travel support to attend the provincial event.
  • The "People's Choice" award winner will receive a $100 gift  card, this award is voted on by the audience.


  • Please contact the Office of Graduate Studies to request an  application form.
  • You  must  submit a completed 3MT   application form to the Office of Graduate Studies (digi­tally) no later than Wednesday March  2nd, 2016
  • Please contact the  Office of Graduate Studies with any  questions
  • A single, static PowerPoint slide is permitted
    • no animation or movement
    • No additional electronic media (e.g. sound and video files)
    • No additional props (e.g. costumes or instruments)
  • Must present in-person
  • Must relate directly to student’s thesis/dissertation research
  • Presentations limited to 3 minutes
  • Adjudicating panel decisions are final


To learn more about 3MT, visit  their website www.threeminutethesis.org

Check out UBC’s 3MT page with tips on competing in 3MT: http://3mt.grad.ubc.ca/participate/
Check out the 3MT videos from around the world here: http://threeminutethesis.org/3mt-showcase


Venue & Address: 
Student Gallery 52 McCaul Street
416-977-6000 x 423
3MT Poster

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS: Reconstructing Resilience

Tuesday, December 1, 2015 - 5:00am to Friday, December 4, 2015 - 5:00am

Reconstructing Resilience is a symposium and exhibition that brings together researchers, artists,
educators, students and community members who are interested in reimagining what it means to be
creatively resilient and sustainable within contemporary society. Hosted by the Impact Economy
Research Hub (IERH) at OCAD University and using varied engagement methods, this event will
highlight local initiatives and act as a knowledge exchange platform for participants.
Resilience, here, refers to a community’s ability to creatively adjust and sustain itself in light of rapid
and occasionally negative change. Sustainability permeates multiple arenas, including economics,
ecology, politics and culture. Reconstructing Resilience will provide the opportunity to examine
intersections of all these spheres.
Is it possible to construct initiatives that truly bridge all four areas of sustainability? What do these
initiatives look like? How is it possible to ensure success, given the diverse intersection of dimensions?
And how do we measure this success? Sprout Guerrilla, an urban gardening business that makes
graffiti art out of moss to counteract air pollution and educate the community about environmental
issues, serves as an illustrative project that addresses these questions.
Reconstructing Resilience invites submissions from researchers, artists, designers and makers. We
welcome submissions in diverse formats, including academic research papers, talks and workshops for
the symposium, and art/craft/design projects suitable for a group exhibition. The exhibition is
scheduled to run from January 15 th – 30 th , 2016 in 49 McCaul street. The symposium will fall on Friday
January 15 th and culminate with the exhibition opening on the evening of the 15 th .
How to apply:
To submit for the exhibition, please send a short bio, statement of interest and 5 -10 supporting
For symposium submissions, please send a short bio, statement of interest and abstract.
To volunteer, please email your preferred area of expertise.
All completed application packs should be sent via email to vclough@faculty.ocadu.ca by 5pm, Friday
December 4 th , 2015. A limited number of bursaries are available for select students, to cover transport
or material costs, please state on your submission if you would like to be considered for funding.

Venue & Address: 
49 McCaul street

Accepting Applications: Mitacs

photo of woman scuba diving
Tuesday, October 20, 2015 - 7:30pm to Friday, November 20, 2015 - 10:00pm

Mitacs is now accepting applications for competitive international research opportunities, including student travel to and from Canada. The deadline to apply is Friday November 20, 2015, at 5 p.m. PST. Results will be announced in February 2016 and research projects can begin any time between February 2016 and December 31, 2016.
For students in Canada to do research abroad:
• Globalink Research Award – MHRD India
o Open to senior undergraduate and graduate students
o 12-week projects at one of seven Indian Institutes of Technology
o $5,000 award and a local grant equivalent to $5,000
• Globalink Research Award – Campus France
o Open to senior undergraduates and graduate students
o 12- to 24-week projects at accredited universities in France
o $10,000 award
• Globalink Research Award – Inria
o Open to graduate students
o 12- to 24-week projects at an Inria Research Centre in France
o $5,000 award and a monthly stipend
• Globalink Research Award – MHESR Tunisia
o Open to senior undergraduates and graduate students
o 12- to 24-week projects at accredited universities in Tunisia
o $7,000 award
To learn more, visit theGlobalink web page or contact Mitacs International at international@mitacs.ca.
Mitacs would like to thank the Government of Canada and the Government of Quebec for their support of the Globalink Research Award. In addition, we are pleased to work with international partners to support this award including France’s Campus France and Inria, India’s Ministry of Human Resource Development, and Tunisia’s Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research and Mission Universitaire de Tunisie en Amerique du Nord.


Mitacs reçoit maintenant les demandes dans le cadre d’un concours international offrant la chance de mener de la recherche à l’étranger. Grâce au programme Globalink, les étudiants canadiens pourront aller à l’étranger ou les étudiants étrangers pourront venir au Canada. La date limite pour présenter une demande est le vendredi 20 novembre 2015 à 17 h (HNP). Les résultats seront annoncés en février 2016 et les projets de recherche peuvent débuter en tout temps entre février 2016 et le 31 décembre 2016.
Pour les étudiants au Canada qui veulent faire de la recherche à l’étranger :
• Bourse de recherche Mitacs Globalink – MHRD Inde

o Programme ouvert aux finissants du premier cycle et étudiants des cycles supérieurs
o Projets de 12 semaines réalisés à l’un des sept Instituts indiens de technologie
o Bourse de 5 000 $ et subvention locale équivalant à 5 000 $

• Bourse de recherche Mitacs Globalink – Campus France

o Programme ouvert aux finissants du premier cycle et étudiants des cycles supérieurs
o Projets de recherche de 12 à 24 semaines réalisés dans les universités agréées en France
o Bourse de 10 000 $

• Bourse de recherche Mitacs Globalink – Inria

o Programme ouvert aux étudiants des cycles supérieurs
o Projets de recherche de 12 à 24 semaines réalisés dans un centre de recherche Inria en France
o Bourse de 5 000 $ et allocation mensuelle

• Bourse de recherche Mitacs Globalink – MESRS Tunisie

o Programme ouvert aux finissants du premier cycle et étudiants des cycles supérieurs
o Projets de recherche de 12 à 24 semaines réalisés dans les universités agréées en Tunisie
o Bourse de 7 000 $
Pour en savoir davantage, veuillez consulter la page Globalink ou contactez Mitacs International par courriel à international@mitacs.ca.

Mitacs tient à remercier le gouvernement du Canada et le gouvernement du Québec de leur soutien à l’égard du Programme de bourses de recherche Globalink. De plus, nous avons le plaisir de travailler avec des partenaires internationaux pour soutenir ce programme de bourses, notamment Campus France et Inria de la France, le ministère du Développement des ressources humaines de l’Inde, le ministère de l’Enseignement Supérieur et de la Recherche Scientifique de la Tunisie ainsi que la Mission Universitaire de Tunisie en Amerique du Nord.

Venue & Address: 

Virginia San Fratello

Earth objects
Friday, November 6, 2015 - 8:00pm to 10:00pm

"Full Scale Study Models”

Virginia San Fratello is a designer, artist and educator. She is a partner at Rael San Fratello and in Emerging Objects, which is a pioneering design and research company that specializes in 3D printed materials and products for the built environment. Her research focuses on the convergence of digital, ecological, and creative material explorations. The research is applied through the design and fabrication of innovative building components, furniture designs, jewelry and object design and site specific installations that look at material resources and have political consequences.

Venue & Address: 
OCAD U Auditorium Room 190

OCAD U graduate students receive prestigious national awards

Thursday, April 2, 2015 - 4:00am

The OCAD University community congratulates the students – from five different master’s programs – who have been awarded Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarships (CGS) by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC):

  • Ryan A. Church – Strategic Foresight and Innovation
  • Jason P. King – Interdisciplinary Master’s in Art, Media and Design
  • David Lawson – Inclusive Design
  • Katherine Meyer – Digital Futures
  • Jennifer Snider – Contemporary Art, Design and New Media Art Histories

“These talented emerging researchers are at the forefront of their respective disciplines,” says Helmut Reichenbächer, dean of graduate studies. “We are all deeply proud of their achievements. They are an inspiration to both their fellow OCAD U students as well as to their professors.”

The CGS scholarships offer valuable support to the recipients, furthering their ability to engage in leading-edge research.OCAD U’s Office of Graduate Studies has created a video that opens a window onto four of those projects.

CGS is part of SSHRC’s Talent Program. Its goal is to develop the next generation of researchers and leaders across society, both within academia and across the public, private and not-for-profit sectors.

OCAD U graduate student honoured for research on disposability

Jp King
Thursday, April 2, 2015 - 4:00am

One of the defining features of industrialized societies is their astounding production and accumulation of material things (watch an episode of the disturbing “reality” series Hoarders for shocking pop-culture evidence). The flip side of that issue is, however, rampant disposal. Landfill sites are bursting with all the stuff we drag to the curb.

“Why do we throw out so much, and what becomes of the things we get rid of?” That’s the question guiding research by OCAD University student Jp King who, on 1 April 2015, was named one of the 25 finalists in phase 1 of the annual Storytellers competition organized by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.

Navigating the mess

King is completing the Interdisciplinary Master’s in Art, Media and Design program at OCAD U. A postdisciplinary artist, scholar and publisher (he operates the experimental publishing lab Paper Pusher), King admits, “I struggle with the tendency to hoard, and my practice-based research is akin to making a map to help me navigate the mess. I see contemporary culture as defined by excess and disorientation, and I have turned towards a type of archival thinking – informed by poetic logic – to understand the vast scale of global production, consumption and disposal.”

Part of King’s research took place during a “discursive” three-week road trip down the eastern seaboard of the United States to Washington, DC, and then back through the interior to Toronto. Along the way, King visited flea markets, recycling facilities, junk shops, museums and other material-culture repositories, documenting – through photos and videos – the “excess and decadence of contemporary America, the problem of garbage and the accumulated detritus that characterizes a society in decay.” In October 2014, King expanded his investigations to Shanghai, which enabled him to compare the problem of amassing and disposal in China and to collaborate with artists and scholars in that country.

For his MA thesis, supervised by Professor Michael Prokopow, King developed the Journal of Disposability and Ex-Possession. This biannual print publication – and its online supplement – is slated to launch in late summer and will be dedicated to interrogating the relationship between discarded matter and global/local culture. Meanwhile, he intends to exhibit a video (The Death of Everyday Objects) tied to his research and the journal in this year’s centennial Graduate Exhibition.

On to Ottawa

Having secured a spot in the Top 25, the next challenge for King will take place on 1 June, as part of the 2015 Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences in Ottawa. That’s when he and 24 other finalists from across the country will make live presentations of their research; out of that group, a Final Five will be chosen. The entire OCAD U community will be rooting for our Storyteller King to triumph.

In good company

In addition to being a Top 25 Storyteller, King also recently received a SSHRC scholarship. Watch this video, in which King and three of his fellow scholarship recipients discuss their research and the importance of SSHRC funding to their investigations.