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Huron’s Chair of the Department of Political Sciences receives significant research grant

Rachel Macaulay, Communications Specialist
Aug 27 2019

Huron is proud to announce our university’s Chair of the Department of Political Science and Coordinator of the Governance, Leadership and Ethics program, Dr. Neil Bradford has received a major new grant for a collaborative project entitled, “Canada’s Implicit Urban Policy”.

This $62,542.00 grant was recently awarded to Dr. Bradford and his collaborators, Zack Taylor (Western University) and Alison Smith (University of Toronto) recognizing their significant contributions to the research landscape surrounding Canada’s urban policies and the intricate political relationships that shape their design and implementation. Unlike many countries that have official urban policies, Canada has multiple federal-provincial-municipal relationships that span policy areas, from affordable housing and public transit to economic development. Dr. Bradford and his colleagues propose the interplay of these relationships creates a distinctively Canadian form of “implicit urban policy”. The three researchers will undertake detailed case studies of policy initiatives in large, medium, and small cities across the country, examining the different ways in which multi-level urban governance “hits the ground”.

Their aim is to better understand how participants perceive roles, goals and relationships, and learn through collaboration to deliver complex public investments and joint programs. The project will advance theories of multi-level governance and public policy, while also benefiting cities and communities by expanding our knowledge of governance in practice.

As Dr. Bradford explains: “A unique strength of this grant is its scholarly partnership across Huron’s Governance, Leadership and Ethics Program; Western University’s Center for Urban Policy and Local Governance; and the University of Toronto’s School of Cities. This means, as the project moves forward, Huron students will be able to team up with governance scholars and graduate students in diverse policy research settings.”

The three-year project is funded by a SSHRC Insight Development Grant and will support primary research and skills development by undergraduate and graduate students at Huron, Western, and the University of Toronto.

One of Huron’s distinct advantages is the university’s strategically-small size, which allows for our Leaders with Heart to work closely with internationally-recognized professors on research projects that are typically reserved to graduate-level studies. As part of the university’s mission to develop well-rounded citizens, who are ready to contribute significant value to their communities, we strongly encourage all of our students to take advantage of these opportunities that enrich their classroom learning.

Students interested in working on this project are invited to contact Dr. Bradford at