International Multidisciplinary Urban Capstone Project

Overview for U of T Students

University of Toronto’s deep urban expertise, across all fields, is tackling the future of cities. The School of Cities is where educators, institutions, practitioners and the public will engage in research, education and outreach to drive forward new city solutions – and a shared prosperity for all citizens. The School of Cities is proud to offer an international opportunity for students to work collaboratively across continents and cultures on industry-sponsored engineering projects.

The International Multidisciplinary Urban Capstone Project (IMUCP) design course is a full academic year capstone design course offered by the University of Toronto and affiliated educational institutions in India. All projects are sourced from an industry client for whom the project represents a real business need. They are also explicitly multidisciplinary in nature. Each team will consist of eight students from at least three disciplines. Half of the team will be composed of fourth- year undergraduate engineering students from the University of Toronto and the other half will include fourth-year undergraduate engineering students from participating educational institutions across India.

Successfully completing the project requires that students integrate skills and knowledge from across multiple disciplines. The IMUCP provides an experience in multidisciplinary practice based around a significant international, urban-related project. Student teams work through a creative, iterative, and open-ended design process to meet specified client needs. Team members from different countries, cultures, and disciplines collaborate to design solutions that address the complexity of contemporary urban challenges.

Applications open March 30, 2020.

What Should You Participate? 

The IMUCP is designed for exceptional fourth-year engineering undergraduates who are looking for a unique, challenging capstone design experience. Students in the IMUCP will:

  • Apply knowledge, skills and processes from several disciplines to conduct analysis and demonstrate judgement as they integrate economic, environmental, social, and other pertinent interdisciplinary factors;
  • Incorporate teamwork, project management, and direct stakeholder and client interaction; and 
  • Prove the feasibility of their design concepts through simulation and prototyping.

Am I eligible to apply?

You are eligible to apply if you are scheduled to take capstone, IMUCP is a substitute course. You can take IMUCP in place of your departmental capstone course, or as a fourth-year independent study course. 

Can I source my own project?

All submitted IMUCP need an external client. Students can source a project but it will have to be approved by the disciplinary capstone coordinator and the course coordinator. 

What resources/facilities does the universities provide for prototyping?

These facilities and resources are posted on the course website once registered in the course. 

If my team needs technical support or advice, is there another source of expertise aside from our supervisor and client whom we can approach?

If your team knows a faculty that is an expert, the team can seek advice from that individual directly. Note that the capstone coordinators are subject matter experts by default. They can also help you.

The Client is expected to spend about 1-2 hours per week to support the project from September to March. This support includes timely access to any data essential for completing the project. The specific details and scope of the project are discussed in an initial meeting in September with the student team, faculty supervisor, and appropriate subject matter experts. 

What is the time commitment?

Each student will work 10 hours per week for about 26 weeks.

Can I form my own team?

While students can form their own team, each team member must apply separately. The departments will select team members that best reflect the needs of the client. 

I am not a student of participating departments, can I still apply for the MUCP? 

At this time, students outside U of T Engineering are not eligible to apply for the international MUCP.

How will the capstone be coordinated?

The capstone project will not require class meetings. Teams will communicate via email and online tools.

How will we be evaluated?

While there are long periods of independent work, the project will be completed as a team. There are regular meetings with the faculty supervisor, as well as an active role played by the industry client. The emphasis will be on technical and non-technical attributes, including communication. At the end of the project, each team member will complete a team evaluation as well as a self-evaluation.

Interested engineering students must can submit their application to:

Your application should include:

  • Resumé;
  • Unofficial transcript;
  • Statement of Interest (not to exceed 300 words); this statement should clearly assert your interest in participating in the course and or, speak to your particular approach to the project.   


2020-2021 Projects:  

Drought is one of the most complex natural disasters, which has a slow onset and hence is a creeping phenomena. Drought causes significant water and food insecurity, leading to economic losses and financial risks in developing countries like India. The Drought Action Network calls upon UofT students to assist in the creation of a “Smart Drought monitoring system” for drought monitoring and providing assistance to the drought early warning system. 

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The Public Relations Office (PRO) of Pune Municipal Corporation(PMC) daily, scans approximately 30 newspapers (paper version) that are published in Pune, India. The manual process has been operational for approximately 10 years at the PRO Department. Today, it is likely that 80% of the newspapers are providing digital content – epaper, recent updates online website, and this offers an opportunity to standardize the process for news media and also extend it to all other types of media. The PRO has requested UofT students to find a solution to automate the archival and analysis process.

Click here to read more