Vision & Mission

Our Vision

To be the leading Geography Department in Canada, globally known for creative, cutting-edge research that defines the evolving discipline and fuels the education of informed and responsible global citizens through innovative, engaged and relevant teaching.


Our Mission

To stimulate and promote excellence in geographic scholarship through:

  • the conduct, publication and broader dissemination of leading-edge research that matters;
  • the provision of an undergraduate learning environment that fosters the knowledge, skills and experiences necessary to prepare students for life in an ever-changing world, and to engage, inspire and challenge them to become informed global citizens;
  • the provision of a research-based, mentorship model of graduate education
  • the sharing of geographic knowledge and the provision of geographic insights on important societal issues

Our Guiding Values  

  • Space and place matter: They drive a broader understanding of environment that includes natural, built, social and organizational environments, and necessarily includes theory, science, policy and practice and embraces other traditions of enquiry that are not motivated by questions of human-nature relations, such as the many cultural, social, and economic aspects of urban studies and sustainable communities, the geological tradition in earth sciences, and the society-space tradition in geography.
  • The power of ideas and skills: We pursue and value discovery and creation of new knowledge and innovative educational approaches that foster ways of thinking, knowledge, skills and experiences that engage, inspire and challenge our students, staff, faculty, alumni and community members to become better informed and responsible global citizens.
  • Learning by doing: We practice and value experiential learning in its many varied forms throughout our geography curriculum. Given the multifaceted nature of geographical knowledge, we are committed to providing active, student-centered learning environments such as fieldwork and project-based exercises. Such learning experiences promote understanding of practical applications of geographic concepts to solve real world problems; enhance critical thinking; develop communication and interpersonal skills for working effectively in teams and community settings; and, encourage the acquisition of transferable skills for various job markets.
  • Interdisciplinarity: As a discipline that straddles the natural, social and information sciences we embrace interdisciplinarity and value the advances in knowledge and understanding that can be made at the intersections of disciplines.
  • Diversity: We value diversity in the Department and University. It is a fundamental source of insight and innovation for our research and teaching practices, and it enriches all communities inside and outside academia. Diversity helps make space for the excluded by addressing injustices that prevent marginalized groups from participating in University life as students, faculty and staff. We are committed to learning from and putting into practice contemporary initiatives concerned with promoting equity, diversity and inclusivity in educational contexts such as indigenization and participatory research with local communities.
  • Collegiality: We value an environment of equity and inclusion in which people treat one another with honesty, respect and with each other’s best interests in mind. We value fair, transparent and inclusive decision making.