The Baldy Center Podcast

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Skyline of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.  Photo by Scott Webb on Unsplash.

Episode 43: Kate Nelischer, “Privately-directed participatory planning: Examining Toronto’s Quayside smart city”

Published May 29, 2024

In Episode 43 of The Baldy Center Podcast, Kate Nelischer talks about her paper, “Privately-directed participatory planning: Examining Toronto’s Quayside smart city”. This paper discusses a past “smart city” urban development project, the importance of public participation in urban planning policy, and the implications it may have on local legislation.

Keywords: Community Engagement, Public Participation, Urban Planning, Regional Development, Toronto, Quayside City, Smart City

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Toronto has, similar to Buffalo, a strong history of grassroots organizing, and it was really mobilized in that moment where a lot of these groups with strong local histories were able to work together to respond to what was happening at Quayside and to challenge it as well. I think that we can learn from what happened there, and from what's happening in Buffalo where the same thing is happening. Lots of individual groups in Buffalo do excellent work on their own, and are working together to empower one another, and to create strength in numbers between those organizations. So this networked approach to grassroots organizing is something that planners in particular need to pay attention to because it's incredibly powerful and beneficial to the overall objective of planning to better communities. I think if we can have an eye to what the community wants, and what they're already doing, and find ways to support their goals and their efforts, we'll be better off in the long run."

                 —Kate Nelischer
                    (The Baldy Center Podcast, Spring 2024)

Kate Nelischer, PhD, Assistant Professor, Department of Urban and Regional Planning

Research Focus: Governance of planning, Design, and Development processes, community engagement

Paul Linden-Retek, Associate Professor of Law; Co-director of the Buffalo Human Rights Center.

Kate Nelischer

Kate Nelischer joined the School of Architecture and Planning in 2022 as assistant professor of urban planning, bringing research and teaching experience that will foster connections across real estate development and urban planning in the study of smart cities and planning and development governance.

 Most recently, Nelischer served as a Lecturer at the University of Waterloo School of Planning and has previously taught at the Toronto Metropolitan University School of Urban and Regional Planning and the University of Toronto Urban Studies and Human Geography Departments. Faculty profile.


Logan, Podcast Host/Producer 2023-24



Logan, The Baldy Center’s 2023-2024 podcast host/producer, is a graduate student in UB's School of Architecture and Planning, Program on International Development and Global Health. Logan is interested in NGOs and nonprofit global health initiatives within the global south. Logan completed undergraduate studies in Public Health, with a minor in Spanish, and has recently been accepted into a certificate program at NYU x Rolling Stone for Modern Journalism. As graduate research assistant, Logan has worked for the Women’s Health Initiative, and, the Community for Global Health Equity. Recipient of the 2022 Art Goshin Global Health Fieldwork Award for research on Decentralization of Health Services in Ghana, Logan currently serves as a research assistant with Dr. Tia Palermo's 2PE lab. 

Executive Producers

Samantha Barbas
Professor, UB School of Law;
Director, The Baldy Center

Amanda M. Benzin 
Associate Director
The Baldy Center