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Associate Professor of Political Science, University of Waterloo

My research has focused on environmental policy and politics surrounding oil extraction in Canada’s major oil producing provinces: Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Newfoundland & Labrador. I have analyzed how environmental policy is developed and contested, emphasizing tensions between environmental/community impacts and economic imperatives. This work was primarily supported by a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Strategic Research Grant, “The Environmental Assessment Processes of Canadian 'Frontier' Oil and Gas,” with Drs. Gail Fraser and Anna Zalik at York University's Faculty of Environmental Studies.

I am now extending this work in an international comparative project on supply-side climate policy, focused on political conditions necessary to wind down fossil fuel extraction in developed-world states. I am particularly intrigued by the rise of “keep it in the ground” movements and legislation.

Current Research Grants:
1) 2018-2020: "The Politics of Leaving Fossil Fuels in the Ground: Building and Testing Comparative Theory in Major Producing States." Insight Development Grant, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC). Principal Investigator.
2) 2015-2021: “Mapping the Power of the Carbon-Extractive Corporate Resource Sector.” Partnership Grant, SSHRC. Co-Investigator; project led by William Carroll (University of Victoria) and Shannon Daub (Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, BC).
3) 2019-2025: “Offshore Oil Exploratory Drilling and Marine Protected Areas: Assessing Decision-Making Processes and Outcomes in Comparative Developed State Cases.” Insight Grant, SSHRC. Co-Investigator with Joanne Ellis (University of Waikato); project led by Gail Fraser (York University).


  • –present
    Associate Professor of Political Science, University of Waterloo
  • 2012–2019
    Assistant Professor of Political Science, University of Waterloo
  • 2008–2012
    Assistant Professor, Environmental Policy Institute and Environmental Studies, Memorial University of Newfoundland, Grenfell Campus


  • 2011 
    Cornell University, PhD in Government
  • 2006 
    Cornell University, MA in Government
  • 2003 
    Carleton University, MA in Political Economy


  • 2020
    Fossilized: Environmental Policy in Canada’s Petro-Provinces:, UBC Press
  • 2020
    Co-authored with J. McKenzie: Amplifying ‘Keep It in the Ground’ First-Movers: Toward a Comparative Framework, Society and Natural Resources
  • 2020
    Co-authored with Y. Strauch and T. Dordi: Constraining Fossil Fuels based on 2°C Carbon Budgets: The Rapid Adoption of a Transformative Concept in Politics and Finance, Climatic Change
  • 2018
    Policy Responses to the Climate Crisis in Canada’s Petro-Provinces: Varieties of Carbon Entrenchment, Studies in Political Economy