Department of Global Development Studies


Global Development Studies

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Kyla Tienhaara

Assistant Professor
Canada Research Chair (CRC) in Economy and Environment Tier 2

PhD (Environmental Studies
  Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

MA (Environmental Science and Law)
  University of Nottingham

BSc (Environmental Science)
  University of British Columbia


Phone: 613-533-6000 ext 78909 (DEVS)
Phone: 613-533-6129 (ENSC)

Mackintosh-Corry Hall, A409
Global Development Studies
Queen's University
Kingston, ON K7L 3N6

Office Hours:
By Appointment

Research Interests 

My research explores the impacts of economic globalization on environmental governance. My Canada Research Chair in Economy and Environment is focused on the opportunities that exist for a Green New Deal in Canada, the United States, and globally. This research involves case studies of ‘green’ investments at the national, provincial and state levels, as well as an examination of the capacity of global institutions to facilitate or constrain such initiatives. See further Related to this, I have a Mitacs Accelerate grant with the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) on “A Green and Just Recovery? An Analysis of Energy Policies Adopted in Response to the COVID-19 Economic Crisis” that involves summer (2021) internships for 6 graduate students to explore data in the Energy Policy Tracker. My SSHRC Insight Discovery Grant examines the role of Export Credit Agencies in financing fossil fuel projects and what intergovernmental initiatives exist to shift these entities to more sustainable investments. Finally, I have ongoing work on the impact of investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) on environmental governance.

Supervisory Interests

When I have a funded position available for my CRC project, I post it at: Students are welcome to contact me to discuss other opportunities in relevant topic areas, such as:

• Green new deals at the local, national, or global level

• Critical examinations of green economy/green growth policies and projects

• Explorations of alternative economic and development paradigms such as Buen Vivir and degrowth

• Understanding employment in the green economy, including initiatives that would be needed to maintain full employment without growth (e.g., shorter working week, job sharing)

• Just transitions

• Fossil fuel subsidies and divestment

• The role of global economic institutions (e.g., G20, OECD) in environmental governance

• Trade and foreign investment agreements and the environment

• Corporate power in global environmental politics

Other Appointments

Joint Appointed with the School of Environmental Studies and the Department of Global Development Studies.


DEVS 492:  Development within Planetary Boundaries?
DEVS 813:  Global Environmental Politics
DEVS 863:  Development within Planetary Boundaries?
ENSC 483:  Trade and the Environment

Selected Publications


K. Tienhaara and J. Robinson (eds.), forthcoming, The Routledge Handbook on the Green New Deal (London: Routledge).

K. Tienhaara, 2018, Green Keynesianism and the Global Financial Crisis (London: Routledge).

K. Tienhaara, 2009, The Expropriation of Environmental Governance: Protecting Foreign Investors at the Expense of Public Policy (Cambridge University Press).


K. Tienhaara and J. Walker (forthcoming) “Fossil Capital, ‘Unquantifiable Risk’ and Neoliberal Nationalizations: The Case of the Trans Mountain Pipeline in Canada” Geoforum.

K. Tienhaara, 2020, “Beyond Accountability: Alternative Rationales for Transparency in Global Trade Politics” Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning 22(1): 112-124.

K. Tienhaara and L. Cotula, 2020, “Raising the cost of climate action? Investor-state dispute settlement and compensation for stranded fossil fuel assets”, International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED), London.

K. Tienhaara (2019) “NAFTA 2.0: Good or Bad News for the Environment?” Earth System Governance 1: 1-4.

K. Tienhaara and C. Downie, forthcoming, “Risky Business? The Energy Charter Treaty, Renewable Energy and Investor-State Disputes”, Global Governance.

K. Tienhaara, 2018, “Regulatory Chill in a Warming World: The Threat to Climate Change Policy Posed by Investor-State Dispute Settlement”, Transnational Environmental Law 7(2): 229-250.

Full list available at: