Tammara Soma of Geography and Planning’s Food Systems Lab is featured in a radio documentary – CBC radio: Ideas

In the News : Matti Siemiatycki weighs in on the shifting role of the Canadian infrastructure bank

Questions loom over Canada’s new infrastructure bank

Matti is quoted in the following news items:

(Toronto Star)  (Bloomberg)  (Bloomberg TV)  (Washington Post)

Matti Siemiatycki quoted in the CBC News: Metrolinx to consider transit fares based on distance travelled

Fare-by-distance only 1 of several ideas to integrate fares across the region.

An argument for fare-by-distance:
Matti Siemiatycki, who teaches geography and planning at the University of Toronto, thinks fare-by-distance pricing has benefits ..
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Emily Gilbert in the U of T News on President Donald Trump’s first week in office

U of T News spoke with Emily Gilbert, an associate professor of geography and planning and Canadian studies in the Faculty of Arts & Science, about the implications of these executive orders and how Canada will be affected by these sweeping changes.

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Michael Widener interviewed by The National on CBC – Dementia risk linked to living close to high-traffic roads

A study in the Lancet by Ontario researchers points to a link between dementia and living close to major roadways:

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Matti Siemiatycki quoted in the Metro News: City-planning experts praise Mayor John Tory’s ‘bold step’ towards road tolls

… for the city,” said Matti Siemiatycki, a University of Toronto geography and planning professor. … Tory’s plan is, at this point, short on specifics.
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Canada’s First Social Innovation Lab on Food Waste and Food Insecurity launched at UofT’s Department of Geography and Planning


The Food Systems Lab is a one-year project which will be piloted in the City of Toronto. It has the potential to be replicated in other municipalities across Canada. Photos from the 1st workshop held November 24th , 2016:














In recent years, food waste has become a hot topic, garnering attention in mainstream media internationally. Globally, about one-third of all food produced is wasted. In Canada, this amount is closer to 40%, of which nearly half is from consumers. High levels of food waste negatively impact the environment, contributing to greenhouse gas emissions, nutrient loss, and the inefficient use of resources for food production. Based on single-family waste audit data from 2015/2016, the average Toronto household throws away about 223 kg of food per year at home, of which about 62% could have been eaten. About half of edible food waste is fruits and vegetables.

In September 2015, the United Nations announced a target of halving global food waste per capita by 2030 as part of the Sustainable Development Goals, which almost all countries in the world, including Canada, have committed to. With such an ambitious target, all levels of government, industry associations, businesses, non-profit organizations and citizens are talking about the issue and looking for solutions to reduce food waste. On Thursday November 24th 2016, the Department of Geography and Planning will be the site of a historic event, the launch of Canada’s first social innovation lab on food waste and food insecurity funded by the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation and developed by PhD Candidate in Planning and Trudeau Scholar Tammara Soma and Belinda Li of GOAL 12 and Engineers Without Borders. University of Toronto’s President Meric Gertler will officially launch the event.

In this frenzy of activity, it is easy to develop solutions in a hurry without careful consideration of root causes or all of the stakeholders that are affected, especially marginalized groups. Without a systems approach to addressing food waste, deeply held assumptions may not be challenged, critical features of the broader system may go unnoticed, and opportunities for innovation and collaboration may be missed.

Professor Ron Buliung in the UTM News on examining school transportation challenges for children with disabilities

An inspiring scholarly and personal story on Ron’s SSHRC grant that examines school transportation challenges for children with disabilities.

With help from a new grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, funding from the Norman Saunders Complex Care Initiative at Toronto’s Hospital for Sick Children, and funds from UTM’s Research and Scholarly Activity Fund (RSAF) Buliung and his Ph.D. student Timothy Ross will document the complex process families confront to get their children with disabilities to school.

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In the Media : Matti Siemiatycki – On Infrastructure spending in Ontario on TVO’s The Agenda with Steve Paikin

Ontario has launched an ambitious $130 billion infrastructure spending program. The Agenda talks to University of Toronto professor Matt Siemiatycki about how the money will be spent and what benefits and pitfalls may lie ahead.

Congratulations: Professor Emeritus Ian Burton awarded the Laureat d’Honneur 2016 from the International Geographical Union for his pioneering work on the understanding of disasters.

This prestigious award was established to recognize individuals who have achieved particular distinction or who have rendered outstanding service in the work of the IGU or in international geography and environmental research. Professor Burton’s contributions to disaster risk and climate change research from a geographical perspective have made an indelible mark on several generations devoted to their study, in both the developing and developed worlds. He has been a leader in establishing theoretical frameworks and methodologies within the international area of environmental risk assessment climate, resilience adaptation, mitigation and sustainable development. His innovative contributions in disaster risk reduction and management across scales have provided clear paths for the transition from theory to practice.