The Academic-Industry Meeting day or AIMdayTM methodology includes a robust six-step process that matches current needs and challenges of participating organizations with research expertise. Queen’s University has recently signed an agreement with Toronto Metropolitan University which enables Queen’s to use the proven AIMday platform and methodology to facilitate engagement, interaction, and collaboration with external organizations. It culminates in a day-long event featuring several one-hour workshops, each of which present one specific question from a participating organization and encourages dialogue with and among participating researchers.

AIMDay cityscape
Photo credit: AIMDay: The Future of Livable Cities

Established in 2008 at Uppsala University, Sweden, AIMday has been implemented and refined by universities from around the world, including the U.K. (Newcastle University, Queen’s University Belfast, University of Cambridge, University of Edinburgh, University of Oxford), Brazil (Federal University of Pernambuco, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul, University of São Paulo), Sweden (Umeå University) and Canada (Toronto Metropolitan University, University of Saskatchewan, University of Manitoba), with Ryerson now acting as the lead university and hub for Canada.

Queen’s and Toronto Metropolitan University are partnering to deliver “AIMday™: The Future of Livable Cities” on November 25th. City living presents numerous challenges such as pollution and climate change, infrastructure and housing, transit and transportation, public administration and community health and safety. These challenges will be especially important to address as Canada pursues recovery following the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Future of Livable Cities event will engage industry, community organizations, and researchers from multi-disciplinary sectors. Participating organizations will present a challenge or question and be matched with interested researchers from Queen’s and Toronto Metropolitan University to explore potential strategies and solutions. The targeted one-hour conversations enable participants to quickly discuss the challenge and how they might collaborate to find an effective solution. The AIMday team, including skilled facilitators and notetakers, prompt engagement and input from all participants and play a leadership role in accelerating the discussions and specific collaboration opportunities immediately following the event.

For researchers, AIMday presents a great opportunity to learn how their projects and research can be applied to address current needs. Once organizations have submitted their queries, researchers will be provided with the list of planned questions/challenges and be invited to register for the discussions that align with their research interests. Through the event they will have the opportunity to network with participating organizations and other researchers who may bring different perspectives and complimentary skill-sets to the challenge posed.

To participate in this free AIMday event, organizations need to apply by October 12, 2021, and researchers need to apply by November 16, 2021. The Future of Livable Cities event will be held on Thursday, November 25, 2021, through the virtual platform, Hopin. For more information and how to register, visit our AIMday event page.

Queen’s Partnerships and Innovation (QPI) is providing leadership for the implementation of AIMday at Queen’s. “QPI creates opportunities for researchers to connect with industry and external organizations to discuss interests, challenges, and opportunities to collaborate and mobilize knowledge”, says Janice Mady, Director of Research and Innovation Partnerships. “We are pleased to plan and deliver this first AIMday event for Queen’s researchers in collaboration with the experienced team at Toronto Metropolitan University.”

“A benchmarking trip provided us with the opportunity to learn about AIMday from a colleague whom brought this program to a Canadian University. That colleague is now at Toronto Metropolitan University and is providing leadership in making AIMday available to Canadian universities”, says Jim Banting, Assistant VP, Partnerships and Innovation.

QPI plans to organize and deliver additional AIMday events that will focus on other topics. Send your suggestions to For updates about future collaborative events and opportunities, join the Queen’s Partnerships and Innovation SciTech News Digest.