Waterloo, Ontario, Canada is a leading hub for innovation on a national and global scale. The University of Waterloo has been rated Canada’s most innovative university for 27 years running, operates the world’s largest co-operative education program, and now supports a wide array of student entrepreneurship opportunities. In addition to being the home of countless cutting-edge tech companies, our surrounding community has nurtured significant social innovations in areas such as restorative justice, poverty alleviation, and refugee resettlement.

Katie Gingerich of The Ripple Effect Education working with others in the Epp Peace IncubatorSocial innovation and peacebuilding intersect daily in the Epp Peace Incubator program. Ventures supported by our incubator are tackling issues that range from landmine eradication in Cambodia to helping organizations measure diversity and inclusion progress. Many of the programs benefiting from our specialized support are also benefiting from other programs in our local ecosystem. It is through our collective efforts that these startups are best supported.

The true heartbeat of our work is collaborative relationships. We are deeply encouraged by the growing and strengthening of bonds between the Centre for Peace Advancement and countless partners in what we call our “innovation ecosystem.” Our partners inspire us and we work together to push the edges of social innovation to improve our collective work.

The Centre for Peace Advancement coordinates the Social Disruptors Group, an emerging network at the University of Waterloo. The Centre for Peace Advancement is also an active member of the Innovation Corridor Impact Network (ICIN). Through these and other networks, we are connected to innovative organizations in Kitchener-Waterloo and beyond. The organizations below include innovation ecosystem partners in Kitchener-Waterloo.

UWaterloo Faculty of Environment


Schlegel Centre

Map the System

Map the System is a global competition that challenges you to think differently. The competition asks you to use a systems-thinking approach to practice changemaking by demonstrating a deep understanding of a pressing social or environmental challenge. This is not a pitch competition, but rather a discovery process for students of any discipline who have an interest in social and environmental change. Tackling global challenges starts with understanding a problem and its wider context by exploring, probing, and researching all of the connecting elements and factors around it.

fall in love with the problem, not the solution

Important Dates

April 8, 2019 — University of Waterloo University Final

May 3 - 4, 2019 — Canadian Final

June 7 - 9, 2019 — Global Final in Oxford

Map the System is an initiative of the Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship at Saïd Business School, University of Oxford, in partnership with educational institutions across the world. Learn more about Map the System.