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The Centre for Community Partnerships is collaborating with the Presidential Advisor on the Environment, Climate Change, and Sustainability, and the Centre for Critical Development Studies (UTSC) to bring you… MAP THE SYSTEM!

Map the System is a global competition hosted by the University of Oxford, which challenges students to analyze issues of social or environmental change. In the competition, individuals or groups of up to five people will research a social or environmental topic important to them, and present their findings to the world.

Explore an issue that matters to you and share your findings with the world! 

You can see the presentations by last year's finalists here and find more information about the 2019 competition here.

  • Build your research and presentation skills
  • Connect with socially-conscious students, innovators and change-makers
  • Prepare for a career and internship opportunities
  • Win cash prizes
  • Compete to present your findings at the University of Oxford, UK
Blue world map

Recap – Map the System 2019

On April 10, we hosted our very first Map the System final at the University of Toronto. Six student teams were shortlisted to present their research. Their interdiscplinary work involved examining various pressing social and environmental issues, ranging from the homeless crisis in Toronto to arsenic contamination in Bangladesh. 

The winning team is Team Against the Odds, consisting of Yulika Yoshida-Montezuma, Ashley Mah, Argie Gingoyon, Kahiye Warsame, and Harsh Naik (graduate students form the Dalla Lana School of Public Health). 

Team Against the Odds focused their research on Indigenous homelessness in Toronto. This research highlights and addresses both contemporary and historical determinants, which continue to perpetuate the issue of Indigenous homelessness. 

On May 4, Team Against the Odds represented the University of Toronto at the 2019 Canadian Finals for Map the System at Ryerson University and competed against 15 teams from post-secondary institutions across the country. It is our pleasure and honour to announce that Team Against the Odds is one of the top three winning teams at the Canadian Finals and will be competing globally at the international Map the System competition in Oxford on June 9, 2019. 

We’d like to take this opportunity to thank all the students for participating in this year’s Map the System, as well as the faculty, community partners, staff and educators who supported their work. This has been an incredible opportunity to blend both curricular and co-curricular learning, while leveraging the power of interdisciplinary learning and knowledge mobilization with and for our communities.

Team Against the Odds
Pictured above: Team Against the Odds with their University of Toronto educator, Cherrie Kwok (right).


You can apply for Map the System as an individual or in a team of up to five people.

At least one member of the team must be a current student at a partner institution (enrolled in a course of 6 months or longer), OR a recent graduate of a partner institution (having completed studies within 12 months of the date you register for the competition).

Students may be at undergraduate, diploma, postgraduate or doctoral level.

How to participate

1. Register Online (by January 28, 2019)

You must register online before January 28, 2019 (11:59 p.m. UK time) in order to participate. 

You don't need to have all of your submission materials ready now. Once registered, you have until April 1, 2019 (11:59 UK time) to submit your materials. During this time, you’re also welcome to revise your topic scope or team.


2. Submit Your Materials (by April 1, 2019)

Submissions will consist of three components:

  • A visual map or chart of the social or environmental issue (PowerPoint, Prezi, PDF, etc.)

  • An essay (max. 3,000 words)

  • A bibliography supporting the research

Important: Submit your materials to BOTH Map the System via the online form AND to the Centre for Community Partnerships via email to by April 1, 2019 at 23:59 GMT.

Entries that are not submitted to BOTH Map the system AND the Centre for Community Partnerships will not be considered.


3. U of T Final (April 10, 2019)

A selection committee consisting of staff, faculty and community partners will review all submissions. All applicants will be informed via email on April 5, 2019 and shortlisted applicants will be invited to present their research to the public on April 10, 2019 at the U of T Final. A local winner will be selected and be invited to the Canadian Final!


4. Canadian Final (May 3 - 4, 2019) 

Two winners of the Canadian Final will receive a $2,500 CASH PRIZE per team and a FREE TRIP to the Map the System Global Final on June 7 - 9, 2019 at the University of Oxford, UK.


5. Global Final at the University of Oxford, UK (June 7 - 9, 2019)


Registration is now closed.


  • Juanita Lee Garcia, Social Innovation Associate of Venture for Canada
  • ​Marieme Lo, Director of the African Studies Program, Associate Director for Education at the School of Cities and Associate Professor in African Studies and Women and Gender Studies at the University of Toronto
  • Susan McCahan, Professor in the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at the University of Toronto
  • Mary Pickering, Vice President, Programs and Partnerships at The Atmospheric Fund
  • Blake Poland, Professor in the Dalla Lana School of Public Health, with cross-appointments in Geography and Adult Education at the University of Toronto


Please contact Cherrie Kwok at at the Centre for Community Partnerships if you have any questions.