Department of Geography and Planning

Department of Geography and Planning
Department of Geography and Planning

Leela Viswanathan

Associate Professor, MCIP, RPP
Mackintosh-Corry Hall, Room D304
613-533-6000 ext. 75038

Leela Viswanathan teaches topics about social planning, planning history, qualitative research methods, and urban geography. She is co-editor with Dr. Scott L. Morgensen of the Journal of Critical Race Studies. Her professional expertise in social policy, integrated comprehensive planning approaches, and community development with diverse populations informs both her teaching and her research. Leela is cross-appointed to the School of Environmental Studies and to the Department of Gender Studies. She is a Full Member of the Canadian Institute of Planners and a Registered Professional Planner in Ontario.


  • B.A. (McGill)
  • M.E.S. Planning
  • Ph.D. (York)


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Research Interests:

My research emerges at the intersection of planning, equity and diversity. I am Principal Investigator on a multi-year SSHRC-funded collaborative research project examining approaches to planning with Indigenous peoples. See The aim of the research is to enhance Indigenous-municipal relations in the context of land use planning in Southern Ontario. My ongoing research interests involve theories and practices of: (1) planning with First Nations; (2) planning pedagogy and service learning; and (3) race, space, and cross-cultural relations. I collaborate with community-based and academic researchers to address both technical and adaptive planning problems at local and regional geographic scales.

Curriculum Vitae (PDF 356 kB)