Welcome to the academic website of Michael Widener

Two pontoon boats in front of Toronto skyline

I am the Department Chair of the Department of Geography and Planning at the University of Toronto – St. George. I also hold the Canada Research Chair in Transportation and Health and a cross-appointment in the Division of Epidemiology at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health.

My research focuses on understanding how cities shape behaviours that influence our health and well-being.

My projects primarily use advanced geographic data science methods to explore this topic, and I am increasingly interested in the ways time-use data and movement analytics can be used to help us build healthier places. Most of my work has focused on the ways food retail environments drive dietary behaviours, but I also have projects on the ways transportation systems impact access to health-related places, how older adults navigate their neighbourhoods to maintain well-being, and whether data on the built environment can be used to reduce the carbon footprint of the healthcare sector.

If you are interested in pursuing a graduate degree with me, please reach out with a short statement about your interests and CV.