Photo of Laura Macdonald

Laura Macdonald

Latin American politics; Mexican politics; North American politics; Canadian foreign policy; Democracy and civil society

Degrees:BA (Queen's) MA, PhD (York)
Phone:613-520-2600 x 2771
Office:C669 Loeb


Laura Macdonald is a Professor in the Department of Political Science and the Institute of Political Economy at Carleton University, and currently Director of the Institute of Political Economy. She is also a member of the McLeod Group ( She has published numerous articles in journals and edited collections on such issues as the role of non-governmental organizations in development, global civil society, citizenship struggles in Latin America, Canadian development assistance and the political impact of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) on human rights and democracy in the three member states. She has also done work on social citizenship in North America and the impact of NAFTA on security, immigration and border control policies. Current projects include: a) a research project funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada titled “From minor player to major actor: The role of Canada in Latin America” ( see and b) research on federal Mexican and Mexico City social policies.

Selected Publications

Laura Macdonald and Jeremy Paltiel, “Middle power or muddling power?” Canadian Foreign Policy Journal, 22 (1) 2016, 1-11.

Laura Macdonald, “Evaluating Canadian economic diplomacy: Canada’s relations with emerging markets in the Americas,” Canadian Foreign Policy Journal, 22 (1) 2016, 12-25.

Christina Gabriel and Laura Macdonald, “Domestic Transnationalism: Legal Advocacy for Mexican Migrant Workers’ Rights in Canada”, Citizenship Studies, Vol. 18, Issue 3-4, 2014, pp. 243-258.

Débora Lopreite and Laura Macdonald, “Gender and Latin American Welfare Regimes: Early Childhood Education and Care Policies in Argentina and Mexico,” Social Politics, Vol. 21, no. 1, 2014, pp. 80-102.

Lucy Luccisano and Laura Macdonald, “Neo-liberalism, Semi-clientelism and the Politics of Scale in Mexican Anti-Poverty Policies,” World Political Science Review, Vol. 8, no. 1, 2012.

Jeffrey Ayres and Laura Macdonald, eds., Contentious Politics in North America, Palgrave Macmillan, 2009.

Laura Macdonald and Arne Ruckert, eds., Post-Neoliberalism in the Americas: Beyond the Washington Consensus?, Palgrave Macmillan, 2009.