Senate approves five new Organized Research Units

research graphic

The five new Organized Research Units (ORUs) focus on new and emerging discoveries in artificial intelligence (AI), neuroscience, emergency mitigation, water, technoscience and society.

The Office of the Vice-President Research & Innovation (VPRI) announces that the Senate of York University has approved five new ORUs, four of which officially started on July 1. The Centre for Integrative and Applied Neuroscience will commence its activity on July 1, 2023.

Amir Asif
Amir Asif

“York’s ORUs have been remarkably successful in fostering positive change by bringing together expertise across disciplines,” said Amir Asif, vice-president research and innovation. “Our organized research units serve as synergistic hubs, supporting innovative, interdisciplinary and collaborative research taking place beyond traditional academic units. The new ORUs exemplify our strengths in technology, sustainability practices, artificial intelligence, neuroscience and emergency management – areas of strategic importance to the University in light of our commitment to United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals.”

The Centre for Artificial Intelligence and Society (CAIS) unites researchers who are collectively advancing state of the art theory and practice of artificial intelligence (AI) systems, law, governance and public policy. The research focuses on AI systems that address societal priorities in health care, smart cities and sustainability, and are fair, explainable, reliable and trusted. 

Neuroscience – the study of nervous system function – aims to explain the biological basis of human behaviour in health and disease. One in three Canadians will experience a brain-related health disorder. The Centre for Integrative and Applied Neuroscience (CIAN), commencing July 1, 2023, mobilizes research to address health, education, industry and other applications important for the global community. 

The Institute for Technoscience and Society (ITS) is a global hub of critical and interdisciplinary research and knowledge mobilization on the relationship between technoscience and society, especially the configuration of social power underpinning scientific claims, medical practices, emerging technologies and sites of innovation.

The York Emergency Mitigation, Engagement, Response, and Governance Institute (Y-EMERGE) works to transform the way societies understand, conceptualize, analyze, manage and govern crises, disasters and emergencies. Y-EMERGE emphasizes community-engaged scholarship, real-world and need-driven research, and evidence-based training for effective emergency management.

One WATER will greatly enhance the capacity to address the diverse aspects of the ongoing water sustainability crises, attract and train future leaders in the field, educate the public, innovate with industrial partners, and attract external competitive funding and endowments. One WATER will engage in interdisciplinary world-class research on sourcing, artificial intelligence, technologies, education and sustainability, resource recovery and reuse, as well as their environmental, educational and societal implications.

The York community can expect another announcement in the coming weeks on the appointment of the ORU directors for these newly established ORUs.

More information on York’s 30 existing Organized Research Units can be found on the University’s Research & Innovation website.