Laura Tate

Resource & Environmental Management


  • BA, East Asian Studies, McGill University
  • MA, Community and Regional Planning, University of British Columbia
  • PhD, Community and Regional Planning, University of British Columbia


Dr. Laura Tate (she/her/hers) will be teaching at SFU starting in January 2023, and has most recently been a sessional instructor in the Geography Department at the University of Victoria, where she has been teaching courses on cities and planning as well as on sense of place and urban design.  She is concurrently working with her partner on a green subdivision using site adaptive planning principles to maximize retention of existing trees, geological features, and reptilian habitat in suburban Victoria, while also providing consulting services.  She has published in peer-reviewed planning journals on effectively using evidence and qualitative research.  She is the author of the book Post-rational Planning: A Solutions-oriented Call to Justice (Routledge, New York, June 2021), which calls for policy and planning that more effectively considers non-rational factors influencing decisions, and calls for better approaches to using evidence and engagement to inform these decisions.  Laura has co-edited two other books: Planning for AuthentiCITIES (Routledge, New York, 2018); and Actor Networks of Planning (Routledge, London, 2016).   While conducting her research, Laura taught urban planning and policy in the United States, as a Visiting Lecturer at Eastern Washington University in Spokane, and the California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo.  In addition, she has worked professionally at several Metro Vancouver area cities and for several BC government agencies, including assignments as a Manager of Growth Strategies, Director of Aboriginal Healthy Living, and Provincial Director of the Community Action Initiative.

Latest Publications:

Tate, L. (forthcoming). Women, property-ownership, and finance: An Under-examined contribution to settler city-building in North America.  Book chapter from Rydin, Y., Beebeejuan, Y., and Andres, L. (eds). New Planning Histories. London, Berlin & New York: Springer.

Tate, L., Hill, M., Carvalho, N., Lyles, W. and White, S. (2023). Confronting Anxiety and Uncertainty in Planning: New Insights for Advancing Justice in Planning Theory and Practice.

Tate, L. (2021). Post-rational Planning: A Solutions-Oriented Call to Justice. New York and London: Routledge.

Tate, L. (2020). Should planners create hierarchies of evidence? Learning from health and choosing our own path. Planning Theory & Practice. 21(4): 635-647.

Tate, L. (2020). Using rapid ethnography to unpack performances of community authenticity: An art festival case from Victoria, British Columbia. Journal of Planning Education and Research.