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The Office of the Vice-President, International is led by an executive team of four, each with extensive experience in international engagement, and with developing partnerships with faculty, students, alumni, NGOs, corporate and philanthropic partners.
Professor Joseph Wong was appointed the University of Toronto’s Vice-President, International on April 6, 2021 for a five-year term, after serving as interim Vice-President effective July 1, 2020. In his previous role as the University’s first-ever Associate Vice-President and Vice-Provost, International Student Experience, Joe opened up new avenues to international learning opportunities for U of T students.
Joe is currently a professor in the department of Political Science as well as in the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy in the Faculty of Arts and Science. Joe previously held the Roz and Ralph Halbert Professorship of Innovation at the Munk School from 2013 to 2023, as well as the Canada Research Chair in Health, Democracy, and Development for two full terms, 2006 to 2016. He was the Director of the Asian Institute at the Munk School from 2005 to 2014.
Joe is the author of many academic articles and several books, including Healthy Democracies: Welfare Politics in Taiwan and South Korea (2004) and Betting on Biotech: Innovation and the Limits of Asia’s Developmental State (2011), both published by Cornell University Press. Most recently (2022), he and Dan Slater published From Development to Democracy: the Transformations of Modern Asia, with Princeton University Press. Joe is the co-editor, with Edward Friedman, of Political Transitions in Dominant Party Systems: Learning to Lose (2006), published by Routledge, and co-edited with Dilip Soman and Janice Stein Innovating for the Global South (2013) with the University of Toronto Press. Joe’s articles have appeared in journals such as the Lancet, the Annual Review of Political Science, Bulletin of the World Health Organization, Perspectives on Politics, Comparative Political Studies, Politics and Society, and Governance, among many others.
Joe has been a visiting scholar at Harvard, Oxford, and other institutions in the US, Asia, and the UK. He has worked with international organizations and governments in Asia, Africa, the Americas, and Europe. Joe’s current research focuses on poverty and innovation. Joe founded the Reach Alliance at the Munk School of Global Affairs. Inspired by the UN Sustainable Development Goals, Reach is a research-intensive initiative involving both faculty and students, which examines how development interventions reach the “hardest to reach” populations around the world. The Reach Alliance recently scaled globally, including partnerships with universities in South Africa, Ghana, the UK, Singapore, Australia and Mexico.
Joe teaches courses in the Department of Political Science, the Munk One program, and the Munk School of Global Affairs. Through his engagement with the Asian Institute and as the Co-Founder of the Global Ideas Institute, Joe works with students from select Toronto-area high schools to provide intensive research and mentoring opportunities. Students are encouraged to learn about the world, to think in a global context, and are given opportunities to tackle global challenges. Nominated by his students, Joe was the recipient of the Faculty of Arts & Science Outstanding Teaching Awards in 2012-2013.
Joe received a B.A. (Hons.) in Political Science from McGill University in 1995, and an M.A. and Ph.D. in Political Science, in 1996 and 2001, from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Associate Vice-President, International Partnerships
Professor Alex Mihailidis was appointed Associate Vice-President International Partnerships on September 1, 2019. Alex is currently the Barbara G. Stymiest Research Chair in Rehabilitation Technology at the University of Toronto and Toronto Rehab Institute. He is also the Scientific Director of the AGE-WELL Network of Centres of Excellence, which focuses on the development of new technologies and services for older adults. He is a professor in the Department of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy (U of T) and in the Institute of Biomaterials and Biomedical Engineering (U of T), with a cross appointment in the Department of Computer Science (U of T).
Alex has been conducting research in the field of pervasive computing and intelligent systems in health for the past 15 years, having published over 150 journal papers, conference papers, and abstracts in this field. He has specifically focused on the development of intelligent home systems for elder care and wellness, technology for children with autism, and adaptive tools for nurses and clinical applications. He currently holds several major research grants from internationally recognized funding agencies to support this work (including the Canadian and American Alzheimer Associations, NSERC, and CIHR). His research has been completed through collaborations with other researchers in this field from Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United States, and with various industrial partners.
Alex received a B.A.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering from University of Toronto in 1996, a M.A.Sc. in Biomedical Engineering in 1998 from the University of Toronto, and a PhD in Bioengineering (Rehabilitation Engineering) in 2002 from the University of Strathclyde (Glasgow, Scotland).
Associate Vice-President & Vice-Provost, International Student Experience
Professor Alexie Tcheuyap was appointed Associate Vice-President and Vice-Provost, International Student Experience, beginning his term on September 1, 2021. Alexie supports international engagement across all three campuses through collaborative development of global opportunities for all University of Toronto students through curricular and co-curricular initiatives. He provides academic leadership in the areas of learning abroad opportunities for students and oversight of the tri-campus Centre for International Experience in collaboration with the Vice-Provost, Students, fostering a positive international student experience and pursuing global partnership opportunities that support these goals.
A Professor of French, Alexie was educated in Cameroon, Scotland and Canada. He has been a Visiting Professor at various universities in Europe, Africa and the USA. A recipient of numerous grants and prizes, his research focusses on African literary, cinema and media studies. He is the author of over 50 research articles, 11 edited volumes, various journal special issues and four books in these disciplines.
In his previous role as Vice-Dean in the Faculty of Arts & Sciences, Alexie managed a broad portfolio of responsibilities, from stakeholder management to leadership and administration within the faculty. He has made significant strides on the labour relations front, promoted Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) in academic hiring, supported searches and promotions, and managed collective agreements with unions.
Assistant Vice-President, International Engagement & Impact
Gwen Burrows was appointed Assistant Vice-President, International Engagement & Impact in June 2022. Gwen previously served as Executive Director, International from 2017-2022. She collaborates with colleagues across the university and internationally to advance U of T’s global engagement and impact in research, in teaching and learning. She has developed and leads the team who implements the university’s international strategy across multiple dimensions, with a particular focus on region-specific engagement strategies and the development of respectful, reciprocal partnerships to maximize U of T’s global impact.
Before being appointed the inaugural Assistant Vice-President, International Engagement and Impact in June 2022, Gwen served as Executive Director, International with responsibility for developing the implementation of U of T ’s first international strategic plan. She has led the development of key international partnerships in a number of regions around the world. In particular, she played a leadership role in the development of the recently launched the Africa Higher Education Health Collaborative with eight universities in Africa.
Prior to joining the University of Toronto, Gwen held a number of leadership positions at The Hospital for Sick Children, including as Executive Director, Public Affairs and Child Health Advocacy from 2013-2017 and as Director of Strategy in the SickKids Research Institute. In the latter role, she was a key leader in the development for a successful proposal to fund the Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning, and in implementing the vision for that facility.
Gwen has been an active volunteer in the charitable sector, including as President for the Couchiching Institute on Public Affairs from 2009-2011. Gwen holds a Master’s in Philosophy from Johns Hopkins and a BA from McGill University