Susannah Bunce

Susannah Bunce headshot
Associate Professor
Acting Chair, 2023-2024
Telephone number
(416) 287-7296
Building HL 534


Ph.D. in Environmental Studies, York University (2008)

MES–Planning, York University (1999)

Bachelor of Arts, University of Guelph (1994)

Research Interests

My research centres on the geographies and planning of urban communities and neighbourhoods and sustainable community building. I am interested in sustainable communities and strategies for socio-environmental justice at the urban neighbourhood scale. I engage with critical theories of urban commons and alternities, gentrification, environmental justice, urban political ecology, and more-than-human geographies to examine localized issues and politics of land use and community-based socio-environmental identifications with local spaces. I am interested in contestations caused by gentrification and other housing/land-based struggles. My research also focuses on insurgent responses and more hopeful, future-oriented community-engaged practices, particularly those related to affordable and equitable land stewardship (urban community land trusts and urban eco-villages). I conduct most of my research in Canadian, British, and European cities. 

My work is grounded in scholar-activism, which blends long-term interest and engagement in anti-poverty, anti-racism, and environmental activism with my scholarly research and teaching practices. I work with a wide range of Toronto-based NGOs and other community partners in research and teaching. 

Teaching Interests

I teach in the Human Geography and City Studies programs. I emphasize class participation and discussion as a teaching approach and specialize in community-engaged experiential learning. I teach a C-level course (CITC02) where students learn about community-based planning and development in local Scarborough neighbourhoods through placements with non-profit organizations and social service agencies.


JPG 1518: Sustainability and Urban Communities - Graduate Course in Geography & Planning, St. George

GGRD08H3: Research Seminar in Environmental Geography, UTSC

CITB03H3: Social Planning and Community Development, UTSC

CITC02H3: Placements in Community Development, UTSC

Awards and Grants

Current Grants:

Office of the Vice-President, International - University of Toronto (2023-) Strategic

Challenges Fund – UCL-UofT Strategic Partnership: Critical Dialogues of the Post-Covid

City: Urban challenges and sustainable development in London UK and Toronto


Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (2021-)

Insight Development Grant, Telling Creek Stories: Community Engagement and 

Indigenous Place Keeping in the Highland Creek Watershed, Scarborough

Principal Investigator (with Co-Applicant, Dr. Nicole Latulippe, University of Toronto 

Scarborough) $53,405

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada/Canada Mortgage and 

Housing Corporation (2020-)

Partnership Grant, Balanced Supply of Housing Node 

Co-Investigator and Co-Chair, Land Practice Innovations Working Group

(Principal Investigator: Dr. Penny Gurstein, University of British Columbia)


School of Cities, University of Toronto (2019-) Research Challenge Funding, 

Affordable Housing Challenge Project (Co-Lead with Dr. Alan Walks, UTM), $150,000


UTSC Principal’s Undergraduate Teaching Award, 2017




Bunce, S., Livingstone, N., March, L., Moore, S. & Walks, A. (Eds.). (2020). Critical Dialogues of Governance, Development and Activism: London and Toronto   UCL Press, London.  

Bunce, S. (2018). Sustainability Policy, Planning, and Gentrification in Cities   Routledge, Abingdon. 

3 Selected Journal Articles:

March, L. & Bunce, S. (2022). Placing the More-than-Human in Environmental Gentrification. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers (July 2022)

Clement, B. & Bunce, S. (2022). Coyotes and More-than-Human Commons: Exploring Co-existence through Toronto’s Coyote Response Strategy. Urban Geography (April 2022)

Bunce, S. (2016). Pursuing Urban Commons: Politics and Alliances in Community Land Trust       Activism in East London Antipode 48(1), 134-150