The School of Cities will be a world-leading centre for innovative interdisciplinary urban research, education and engagement. It is where diverse communities will come together to spark new insights and design creative ways for cities and their residents to thrive.
The School of Cities is a solutions incubator for urban-focused researchers, educators, students, practitioners and the general public to explore and address the complex global challenges facing urban centres. A living laboratory, the School leverages urban data and lived experience to improve policy and decision-making, and collaborates with communities around the world to make cities and urban regions more sustainable, prosperous, inclusive and just.
The School of Cities seeks to leverage our extraordinary community of urbanists and urban-oriented researchers to create a rich, multidisciplinary community of urban faculty, researchers and students across disciplines and perspectives.
In addition to facilitating interdisciplinary research projects and partnerships and funding opportunities, we provide a hub for urban-focused interdisciplinary and collaborative learning.
Statement Acknowledging Traditional Lands
We wish to acknowledge this land on which the University of Toronto operates. For thousands of years it has been the traditional land of the Huron-Wendat, the Seneca, and most recently, the Mississaugas of the Credit River. Today, this meeting place is still the home to many Indigenous people from across Turtle Island and we are grateful to have the opportunity to work on this land.
Statement on Institutional Culture and the Practice of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion.
The School embraces equity, diversity and inclusion as a source of creativity and inspired scholarship. These values are embedded in the School’s leadership, institutional culture, and governance structures, manifested across its research, education, and partnerships/outreach, and in its activities. The School aims to reflect the diversity of people and communities of the local urban region, and is especially committed to the active participation of under-represented and equity-deserving groups, especially Indigenous, Black, immigrant, and racialized people, people with disabilities, and LGBTQ2S+ people.
The School will reflect a global sense of urbanism, with attention to the interplay between local and global contexts, and the relationships and networks that shape a sense of place. Locally, its scope will include the cities and metropolitan areas that comprise the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area. Internal and external partnerships and engagement will be the bedrock of the School. The School’s core values will inform its partnerships, and it seeks meaningful collaborations with its partners, recognizing that communities and their members are not sites or objects of research, but actors and collaborators in knowledge-making projects.
About the Director
Karen Chapple, Ph.D., is the Director of the School of Cities at the University of Toronto, where she also serves as Professor in the Department of Geography and Planning. She is Professor Emerita of City & Regional Planning at the University of California, Berkeley, where she served as department chair and held the Carmel P. Friesen Chair in Urban Studies. Chapple studies inequalities in the planning, development, and governance of regions in the U.S. and Latin America, with a focus on economic development and housing. Her recent books include Planning Sustainable Cities and Regions: Towards More Equitable Development (Routledge, 2015), which won the John Friedmann Book Award from the American Collegiate Schools of Planning; Transit-Oriented Displacement or Community Dividends? Understanding the Effects of Smarter Growth on Communities (with Anastasia Loukaitou-Sideris, MIT Press, 2019); and Fragile Governance and Local Economic Development: Theory and Evidence from Peripheral Regions in Latin America (with Sergio Montero, Routledge, 2018). She has published recently on a broad array of subjects, including the use of big data to predict gentrification (in Environment and Planning B), the fiscalization of land use (in Landscape and Urban Planning), urban displacement (in the Journal of Planning Literature and Cityscape), competition in the electric vehicle industry (in Local Economy), job creation on industrial land (in Economic Development Quarterly), regional governance in rural Peru (in the Journal of Rural Studies), and accessory dwelling units as a smart growth policy (in the Journal of Urbanism). Read more here.