Media Releases

Munk School announces appointment of the Canada Centre for Global Security Studies Director

October 7, 2010

TORONTO, ON – Today, Janice Stein, Director of the Munk School of Global Affairs (Munk School) announced the appointment of Professor Ron Deibert as the Director of the Canada Centre for Security Studies (Canada Centre). Deibert previously served as the Director of the Citizen Lab, an interdisciplinary laboratory based at the Munk School focusing on advanced research and development at the intersection of digital media, global security and human rights.

“The Munk School is proud to announce that Ron Deibert will lead the newly formed Canada Centre for Global Security Studies, the first Canada branded centre at the University of Toronto, as its inaugural Director,” stated Stein. “This appointment is a clear signal that the Canada Centre will bring an entrepreneurial and interdisciplinary approach to the study of security issues facing not only Canada and our traditional allies, but also contemporary threats which countries, corporations and citizens cope with around the globe on a daily basis.”

Professor Deibert will continue to head the Citizen Lab while providing leadership to the other initiatives housed at the Canada Centre including activities focusing on: cybersecurity, arctic security, and regional (Asia/Europe/Americas) initiatives on global security.

“Our aim for the Canada Centre is to grapple with complex global security issues in innovative ways that help generate big ideas and new solutions,” added Professor Deibert. “We intend to do so by building upon the model of the Citizen Lab, whose success is derived from interdisciplinary research and partnerships with the private sector, government, and civil society.”

The Citizen Lab received worldwide media attention for two major investigations into global cyber espionage: Tracking Ghostnet and Shadows in the Cloud.  The investigations were carried out in partnership with the SecDev Group, a private sector think tank based in Ottawa with which the Citizen Lab collaborates on a wide range of research activities.  The Citizen Lab was an incubator for an Internet freedom technology project, called Psiphon, which has now become a private Canadian company with annual revenues of $1.65- million.  The Lab has also been instrumental in raising awareness about Internet censorship worldwide, and has worked with tech companies, like Google, to become more transparent.

The creation of the Canada Centre was made possible through a $25-million grant by the Government of Canada which was announced by Prime Minister Stephen Harper in April, 2010.

“As our economies, civil societies and institutions become more global in nature so too are the threats that can interrupt such progress.  The Canada Centre, its academics, researchers and students, led by Ron Deibert, will be an essential meeting point where we can gain a better understanding of these global threats and develop effective responses,” concluded Stein.

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For more information, please contact:
Neil Desai – Director, Programs and Communications
Munk School of Global Affairs
416.946.5118
n.desai@utoronto.ca

For Ron Deibert’s bio click here

For more about the Citizen Lab click here

For the Government of Canada’s press release announcing funding for the Canada Centre click here