The Urban Politics and Governance research group at McGill University

UPGo, the Urban Politics and Governance research group at McGill, addresses pressing urban governance problems–particularly those that exceed or challenge city boundaries–with rigorous and publicly-oriented research. Our three research themes are 1) local and regional economic development; 2) urban sustainability; 3) housing policy. UPGo is led by Prof. David Wachsmuth of the School of Urban Planning.

UPGo Blog

News, research summaries, and more

New analysis of STRs in Toronto in advance of August 26 provincial hearing

Wachsmuth and Weisler paper a finalist for AESOP prize, and now open access

New analysis of the racial and economic equity dimensions of access to bike sharing in New York City

Projects

Adapting urban environments for the future

A theme of the McGill Sustainability Systems Initiative

Can cities save the planet?

A collaborative project with UC Santa Cruz on global urban sustainability thought and practice

Cities, short-term rentals, and the sharing economy

A SSHRC-funded investigation into the impacts of short-term rentals on cities

Libraries as urban infrastructure

An investigation into the social context and social benefits of urban libraries in Canada

People

Principal Investigator

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David Wachsmuth

Canada Research Chair in Urban Governance

Local sustainability planning, Regional economic development, Housing policy, The platform economy

Graduate Students

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Amy Bolt

Master’s research assistant

Community mobilization, Short-term rentals and the housing market, Public space re-design and gentrification

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Charlotte Belot

Master’s research assistant

Equity and sustainability, Community-based planning, Short-term rentals and housing affordability

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Danielle Kerrigan

PhD research assistant

Affordable housing models, Social relations in the housing sector, Short-term rentals and the platform economy

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Lou Seltz

Master’s research assistant

Housing affordability and alternative tenure models, Sustainability planning, Food security

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Nat Pace

Master’s research assistant

Critical cartography and geovisualization, Local sustainability planning, Urban economic geography

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Robin Basalaev-Binder

Predoctoral research assistant

Social and racial justice in planning, Housing and immigration, Short-term rentals, Urban sustainability

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Danielle Girard

Master’s research assistant

Environmental policy and planning, Urban governance, Community-led planning

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Mikael Brunila

PhD research assistant

Spatial data science, Bayesian inference, Natural language processing

Undergrads

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Bowen Zhang

Undergraduate research assistant

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Cayce McClenen

Undergraduate research assistant

Alumni

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Jennifer Combs

Former Master’s research assistant

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Andrea Shillolo

Former Master’s research assistant

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David Chaney

Former Master’s research assistant

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Jamie Rathwell

Former Master’s research assistant

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Xuanxiao Wang

Former Master’s research assistant

Recent & Upcoming Talks

David Wachsmuth discusses the challenges and possibilities of urban life in a sustainable future.

David Wachsmuth speaks on a panel on “Municipalities and the affordable housing crisis”, organized by CUPE.

David Wachsmuth explores the relationship between large public libraries and questions of pressing social need in cities.

Open data science at UPGo

All of the code for our quantitative analysis projects is freely available for replication and repurposing on our team Github page. We often work with proprietary data which we are unable to share, but where we are using public data we share that as well.

We are also working to develop strr, an R package for cleaning, analyzing and visualizing short-term rental data. We expect to release a stable version to CRAN later in 2019, but the development version is now available for testing and feedback.

UPGo on Github

Contact