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Ren Thomas

Assistant Professor

Ren Thomas
School of Planning

Email: ren.thomas@dal.ca
Fax: 902-423-6672
Mailing Address: 
5410 Spring Garden Road PO Box 15000, Halifax, NS, Canada B3H 4R2
 
Research Topics:
  • housing, transportation, immigration in urban centres

Education

  • PhD, Community and Regional Planning, University of British Columbia
  • MA, Community and Regional Planning, University of British Columbia

Teaching

  • Plan 3006 Reading the Landscape
  • Plan 4002 Urban Design Studio
  • Plan 3051/5051 Topics in Community Design - Social Justice

Research Interests

Dr. Thomas conducts research in housing policy, transportation policy and planning, and immigration. She is particularly interested in case studies, which allow her and her students to conduct in-depth analysis of policies and programs, comparisons across policies, and meta-analysis to determine more generalizable trends. Her current research includes:

  • "Understanding barriers to affordable housing implementation: A meta-analysis of case studies in Canadian housing policy" (SSHRC Research Development Fund 2017-2019).
  • "Over the line: A bilateral conversation on race, place, and the environment" (SSHRC Connection Grant 2017, P.I. Ingrid Waldron).
  • "Neighbourhood inequality, diversity, and change: Trends, processes, consequences, and policy options for Canada’s large metropolitan areas (SSHRC Partnership Grant 2014-2019, P.I. David Hulchanski)

Selected Publications

  • Thomas, R., Pojani, D., Lenferink, S., Bertolini, L., Stead, D. and Van der Krabben, E. (in press) Is transit oriented development (TOD) an internationally transferable policy concept? Regional Planning.
  • Thomas, R. and Terashima, M. (2017). Aging Atlantic cities: Challenges and potential solutions for planners. Plan Canada 57(3): 8-11.
  • Thomas, R. (2017) The Urban Transport Crisis in Emerging Economies (book review). Journal of Planning Education and Research. DOI: 10.1177/0739456X17707812
  • Thomas, R. (2017) Town and Crown: An Illustrated History of Canada’s Capital (book review). Journal of Planning Education and Research. DOI 10.1177/0739456X16688769
  • Thomas, R. (ed.) (2016) Planning Canada: A Case Study Approach. Don Mills, ON: Oxford University Press.
  • Thomas, R. and Bertolini, L. (2015) Policy transfer among planners in transit-oriented development. Town Planning Review 86(5) 537–560. DOI: 10.3828/tpr.2015.32
  • Thomas, R. and Bertolini, L. (2015) Defining critical success factors in TOD implementation using rough set analysis. Journal of Transport and Land Use. DOI: 10.5198/jtlu.2015.513
  • Thomas, R. (2015) Changing Lanes: Visions and Histories of Urban Freeways (book review). Canadian Journal of Urban Research 24(1).
  • Thomas, R. (2015) Remaking the City Grid (book review). Spacing 36: 60.
  • Thomas, R. and Bertolini, L. (2014) Beyond the case study dilemma in urban planning: Using a meta-matrix to distil critical success factors in transit-oriented development. Urban Policy and Research 32(2): 219-237. DOI: 10.1080/08111146.2014.882256
  • Thomas, R. (2014) Tipping Points. In A. C. Michalos (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Quality of Life and Well-Being Research, Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer. Volume 11, 6667-6670.
  • Thomas, R. (2013) Viewing immigrants’ housing and neighbourhood choices through the lens of community resilience. Surveys and Perspectives Integrating Environment and Society (S.A.P.I.E.N.S.) 6(1).
  • Thomas, R. (2013) Resilience and housing choices among Filipino immigrants in Toronto. International Journal of Housing Policy 13(4): 408-432. DOI: 10.1080/14616718.2013.840112
  • Thomas, R. (2013) Human Transit: How Clearer Thinking about Public Transit Can Enrich Our Communities and Our Lives (book review). Journal of Planning Education and Research 33(2): 245-247.
  • Thomas, R. (2011) Foundations of Governance: Municipal Government in Canada’s Provinces (book review). Canadian Journal of Urban Research 20(1): 164-166.
  • Thomas, R. (2010) “Why can’t we get around?” Travelling under constraints in Metro Vancouver. Canadian Journal of Urban Research 19(1): 89-110.
  • Thomas, R. (2009)  Tomorrow’s transportation demographics: Youth and young adults. Plan Canada 49(4): 22-25.
  • Thomas, R. (2008)  Engaged or disinterested? Youth political and civic participation in Canadian transportation planning. Critical Planning 15(1): 121-139.

Memberships and Service

  • Canadian Institute of Planners
  • Planning Institute of British Columbia
  • Reviewer, Journal of Transport and Land Use (2013-present), Canadian Geographer (2012-present), Canadian Journal of Urban Research (2011-present)

Selected Honours and Awards

  • Centre for Teaching and Learning Change One Thing Challenge, 2017 Recipient
  • Canadian Institute of Planners Award of Merit (2017, Planning Publications) for Planning Canada: A Case Study Approach