Photo of Jill Wigle

Jill Wigle

Associate Professor, Undergraduate Environmental Studies and Human Geography Program Supervisor and Student Advisor

Degrees:MSc.Planning (University of Toronto) Ph.D. (University of Toronto)
Phone:613-520-2600 x 8552
Office:B353 Loeb Building
Office Hours: Tuesdays from 3:00 to 4:30 pm


I received my PhD in Geography from the University of Toronto. After completing a postdoctoral fellowship at the Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana (Azcapotzalco) in Mexico City, I joined the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies at Carleton in 2008. As an urban geographer, my primary research interests include informal housing and settlement processes, urban spatial regulation and socio-spatial conflict in Latin America, especially Mexico City. Before starting my doctorate, I worked as an urban planner in Toronto and remain a Member of the Canadian Institute of Planners (MCIP). I am cross-appointed to the Institute of Political Economy at Carleton.

Research Interests

  • The spatial governance of informal settlements
  • The politics of land use regulation
  • Land, housing and the right to the city
  • Urban food security and informality
  • Anti-poverty programs and urban security

Research Projects

  •  2016-2018  Co-Investigator, Insight Development Grant (2016-2018), Safe Cities, Urban Politics and Social Policy in North American Cities (New York, Toronto, Mexico City).
  •  2014-2019  Co-Investigator, Mexico City Team, SSHRC-IDRC Partnership Development Grant, Hungry Cities (China, India, Jamaica, Kenya, Mexico, Mozambique and South                                    Africa).

2016 – 2017 Courses

Selected Publications

Hungry Cities Partnership Report No. 7: The Urban Food System of Mexico City, Mexico. 2017. Cape Town, South Africa and Waterloo, Canada: African Centre for Cities, University of Cape Town and Wilfrid Laurier University/Balsillie School of International Affairs. Report available at:

Connolly, Priscilla and Jill Wigle. 2017. (Re)constructing Informality and “Doing Regularization”in the Conservation Zone of Mexico City. Planning Theory and Practice, DOI: 10.1080/14649357.2017.1279678

Wigle, Jill. 2017. De Áreas Verdes a Zonas Grises: Gobernanza del Espacio y Asentamientos Irregulares en Xochimilco, Ciudad de México, in Antonio Azuela (Ed.) La Ciudad y Sus Reglas: Sobre la Huella del Derecho en el Orden Urbano. Mexico City: Instituto de Investigaciones, UNAM and PAOT.

Wigle, Jill. 2014. The “graying” of “green” zones: Spatial governance and irregular settlement in Xochimilco, Mexico City. International Journal of Urban and Regional Research. 38(2): 573-589.

Wigle, Jill and Lorena Zárate. 2012. Realizing the Right to the City: From declaration to action? Progressive Planning 193: 35-38.

Wigle, Jill. 2010. The “Xochimilco model” for managing irregular settlements in conservation land in Mexico CityCities 27: 337–347.

Wigle, Jill. 2010. Social Relations, Property and “Peripheral” Informal Settlement: The Case of Ampliación San Marcos, Mexico CityUrban Studies 47(2): 411–436.

Wigle, Jill. 2008. Shelter, Location and Livelihoods: Exploring the Linkages in Mexico City. International Planning Studies 13 (3): 197-222.

Graduate Student Supervision

2010-2016   Andrea Carrión, PhD, DGES, Co-supervised with Professor Derek Smith. The Spatial Restructuring of Resource Regulation. The Gold Mining Enclave of Zaruma and Portovelo, Ecuador (1860-1980).

2013-2016   Alex Copp,  MA, DGES, Supervisor. From Urban Forests to Neighbourhood Treescapes: An Examination of Power, Actors and Processes in Champlain Park, Ottawa.

2013-2014   Glennys Egan, MA, IPE, co-supervision with Professor Blair Rutherford. ‘Actually-existing’ Neoliberalism in Nairobi, Kenya: Examining Informal Traders’ Negotiations over Access to the Entrepreneurial City.

2010-2013   Chris Bisson, MA, DGES, co-supervision with Professor Patricia Ballamingie. Forests for the People: Resisting Neoliberalism through Permaculture Design. 

Recent Conference Presentations

2016. Social policy and spatial regulation in Mexico City” presented at the RC21 Annual Conference, Mexico City.

2015. “Land use regulation as social policy in Mexico City”, presented at the Latin American Studies Association Congress, San Juan, Puerto Rico.

2015. “Enacting informality, regulating space in Mexico City”, presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Association of Geographers, Chicago.

2014. “Land, land use and the Right to the City: Mexico City”, presented at the Planners Network International Conference, Universidad Autónoma de Ciudad Juárez, México.

2013. “Peripheries, boundaries and settlement expansion in south-eastern Mexico City,” presented at the Global Suburbanisms Conference, York University, Toronto.