Canada’s first United Nations leadership training center opens on the Markham campus in York U

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York University and the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) will establish the first International Training Center for Local Actors (CIFAL) in Canada.

York Region has been chosen as the new home for this global initiative, with the Markham Center campus in York being chosen for the CIFAL York site when it is open and operational.

The center will serve as one of 22 hubs around the world for knowledge exchange between government officials, the private sector, academia and civil society.

It will be a catalyst for positive change and expand York’s global reach, which already includes more than 300 academic, industry and NGO partners in more than 70 countries, a spokesperson for the university said.

In addition, CIFAL York will provide a platform for dialogue and a forum for the development of new ideas by providing public officials, policy makers and academics with learning opportunities that facilitate knowledge sharing and improve decision-making processes. .

“The world faces complex global issues – from the climate crisis and inequalities to rapid technological change and the pandemic – which call for collaboration between sectors and between countries to be resolved,” said the president and vice-president. – chancellor of the university, Rhonda L. Lenton.

“The creation of this CIFAL center, in partnership with UNITAR, will allow us to bring together leaders from governments, non-profit organizations and industry with researchers and educators to share their experiences and expertise, and train new generations of world leaders, ”she added.

“We are proud to welcome CIFAL York as part of our commitment to building a healthier and more just, sustainable and prosperous world. “

York University’s “disproportionate reputation” made it an obvious choice when the United Nations, through UNITAR, began to think about partnering with an academic institution in Canada to share knowledge and best practices. said UN Under-Secretary-General and UNITAR Executive Director Nikhil Seth.

“I consider academic institutions to be one of UNITAR’s most essential allies, without which we cannot hope to achieve Agenda 2030,” he added.

By hosting a CIFAL Center at York University, the region further expands the opportunities for collaboration between all levels of government, international organizations, the business community and the public sector to continue to build strong, caring and safe communities. where everyone can develop their full potential. , said Wayne Emmerson, president and CEO of York Region.

Professor Ali Asgary will act as the new Director of CIFAL York together with Associate Director, Idil Boran, effective June 1 in temporary offices on the Keele Campus in York.

Since its creation in 2003, the CIFAL network has reached more than 30,000 beneficiaries through more than 400 learning events.

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