The Institute for Management and Innovation (IMI) is thrilled to welcome Dr. Shauna Brail as Director, beginning May 2023 for a five-year term.
IMI’s mission is to constantly rethink innovation to solve the hardest global problems facing people, their communities and societies. Through transformational thinking and interdisciplinary collaboration, IMI empowers and inspires, builds leaders, and develops the skills needed to harness innovation and apply it to create positive impacts for people and communities. Established in 2013, IMI is now home to six professional graduate programs, a social purpose incubator, an executive education hub and more. Its world-class faculty lead research that seeks to address some of the most vexing management and innovation challenges.
“I am humbled and honoured to serve as IMI Director – both to build on IMI’s existing strengths, especially with respect to professional graduate education, and to grow its impact and reach as an engaged centre of research” says Brail. “As an IMI faculty member, I’ve learned that this is a place where students and learning are prioritized, where debates are critical and collegial, and where challenges are approached with unmatched levels of enthusiasm and professionalism.”
Professor Brail is well-positioned to lead IMI. Brail joined the University of Toronto in 2005 and previously served as the Presidential Advisor on Urban Engagement, Director of the Urban Studies Program at Innis College, and Associate Director, School of Cities. Prior to joining the University, she worked in management consulting and in the Ontario provincial government.
As an economic geographer and urban planner, Brail’s work focuses on the transformation of cities as a result of economic, social, and cultural change. Brail is currently leading research projects related to mobility, digital platforms and cities in a post-covid era. She prioritizes sharing her research findings with scholarly, business, policy and public audiences, and is a frequent media contributor. In addition, she serves on the editorial boards of Applied Geography, Urban Geography and Progress in Economic Geography.
A skilled facilitator, Brail advises governments and civic society organizations, both in Canada and internationally, on matters relating to urban economic change, housing and transportation policy innovation, and the regulation of digital platforms and technologies. She is committed to inclusive innovation and responsible leadership. Her work on urban transformation and policy, alongside her demonstrated commitment to student engagement and the staff and faculty experience, ensure that she will guide IMI to realize its vision and goals in a collaborative and meaningful way.
“In consultation with faculty, staff, students and alumni, I will lead with a focus on ensuring that IMI continues to play a crucial role at UTM, across UofT and beyond. I look forward to growing IMI’s reputation for excellence as a centre of management and innovation scholarship and educational leadership,” says Brail.