Jordana Wright


A highly skilled and socially conscious Researcher with experience designing, coordinating, administering, and evaluating projects for academic institutions, government agencies, and non-profit organizations.


Doctor of Philosophy, Criminology and Sociolegal Studies
University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario
2011 - Present

  • Course work:
  • Law, Space and Regulation
  • Data Analysis (Quantitative)
  • Qualitative Methods
  • Urban History
  • Geographic Information Systems

Major comprehensive examination in the legal (re)production of urban physical structures and spatial forms

  • Dissertation Committee:
  • Dr. Mariana Valverde (Professor, Criminology and Sociolegal Studies, University of Toronto)
  • Dr. Paul Hess (Director, Planning Program, University of Toronto)
  • Dr. David Hulchanski (Research Director, Cities Centre, University of Toronto)
  • Dr. Paula Maurutto (Associate Professor, Sociology, University of Toronto)

Master of Arts, Criminology and Sociolegal Studies
University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario
2009 - 2010

Bachelor of Arts, Political Science (Major) and Canadian Ethnic & Racial Studies (Minor)
McGill University, Montreal, Quebec
2006 - 2009


Community Planning Coordinator
Green Change (Jane-Finch Community and Family Centre satelite), Toronto, Ontario
May 2017 - Present

Green Change is currently engaged in two distinct but intersecting community planning projects: (1) an inclusive local economies project that is exploring the potential of current economic development opportunities in Jane and Finch as well as how to design more supportive employment; and (2) a research and community engagement project that seeks to better understand the current state of affordable housing in the neighbourhood and develop an approach to shaping future growth and change, in collaboration with our partners at John van Nostrand Development. As the Community Planning Coordinator, I am responsible for:

  • Coordinating the research and engagement activities of both community planning projects
  • Recruiting and supporting two teams of community researchers
  • Organizing and facilitating interviews, meetings, and workshops with community members, local organizations, and other partners
  • Working with the Green Change team and partners to develop accessible engagement materials, tools, and resources
  • Developing and growing partnerships with local employment agencies, community organizations, residentled groups, businesses, government representatives, and other stakeholders
  • Gathering and analyzing neighbourhood-wide and site-specific data, and creating maps and other graphics where needed
  • Drafting project reports and helping identify opportunities for policy change, service supports, and further research
  • Contributing to overall project documentation, knowledge sharing, and developmental evaluation process
  • Researching, identifying, and preparing funding proposals as required

Teaching Assistant
University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario
January 2012 - May 2017

I have assisted with the teaching of undergraduate students from first year through fourth year. As a Teaching Assistant, I was responsible for:

  • Creating student evaluation materials, including tests, exams, assignments, and related grading schemes
  • Organizing and running tutorials
  • Grading student work
  • Developing and maintaining online course content (with Blackboard Learning Systems)
  • Coordinating service learning opportunities

  • Courses:
  • CRI428H1S 2017: Neighbourhoods and Crime (with Dr. Honor Brabazon)
  • CRI215H1F 2016: Sociolegal Studies (with Dr. Honor Brabazon)
  • CRI225H1F 2015: Criminal Law (with Breese Davies)
  • CRI215H1F 2015: Introduction to Sociolegal Studies (with Dr. Honor Brabazon)
  • CRI215H1S 2015: Sociolegal Studies (with Dr. Jamie Rowen)
  • CRI350H1F 2014: Criminological Research Methods (with Dr. Victoria Sytsma)
  • UNI365H1F 2013: Sexuality and the Law (with Dr. Brenda Cossman)
  • WDW387H1F 2013: Legal Regulation (with Dr. Jamie Rowen)
  • WDW385H1S 2013: Representing Crime and Authority (with Dr. William Watson)
  • WDW215H1F 2012: Introductory Sociolegal Studies (with Dr. Kerry Taylor)
  • WDW387H1S 2012: The Legal Regulation of Morality (with Dr. Mariana Valverde)

Researcher, Planning by Contract (PI: Dr. Mariana Valverde)
University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario
April 2013 - August 2016

Planning by Contract is an empirical study of the legal and governance dimensions of infrastructure partnerships. This study addresses the decision-making processes involved in the contractual techniques of governance that characterize partnerships for infrastructure. As a Researcher, I was responsible for:

  • Preparing the project ethics protocol and submitting it to the Research Ethics Board
  • Filing Freedom of Information requests (Municipal Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act request forms) and appeals to the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario, as well as participating in mediation and arbitration
  • Locating and analyzing relevant documents, including planning studies, reports, and project evaluations, as well as contracts and other legal documents
  • Compiling a 'grey literature' database (with WizFolio)
  • Identifying and interviewing key informants, including active and retired planners, developers, engineers, and contractors, as well as public officials and members of the public who are active in environmental or social activist groups
  • Organizing and assisting with the hosting of a research workshop on infrastructure partnerships for practitioners and academic experts
  • Coordinating multiple Research Assistants

Data Analyst, Tenant Duty Counsel Program Review (Lead Researcher: Dr. Emily Paradis)
February 2016 - August 2016

The Tenant Duty Counsel Program (TDCP) Review is an independent review of four high-volume TDCP sites (Toronto North, Toronto South, Hamilton, and Ottawa), commissioned by the Advocacy Centre for Tenants Ontario. The purpose of the review is to evaluate the effectiveness of services offered, identify best practices, and make recommendations for changes that may enhance tenants' access to justice. As the Data Analyst, I was responsible for:

  • Designing a database for the review
  • Inputting tenant intake and outcome data
  • Conducting data analysis
  • Producing tables and visualizations

Course Instructor
University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario
May 2015 - June 2015; May 2016 - August 2016

I was a Course Instructor for undergraduate students from second year through fourth year. As a Course Instructor, I was responsible for:

  • Designing, preparing, and delivering course content
  • Creating and maintaining online courseware (with Blackboard Learning Systems)
  • Developing and administering assignments, tests, and examinations
  • Marking and grading student work, and the submission of grades to the College in accordance with established policies and procedures

  • Courses:
  • CITC10H3Y 2016: Law and the City (selected issues), Human Geography (UTSC)
  • CRI490H1F 2016: Law, Property, and Place (advanced topics), Criminology and Sociolegal Studies (U of T)
  • SOC323H5S 2016: Law and Society, Sociology (UTM)
  • CRI394H1F 2015: Law and the City (special topics), Criminology and Sociolegal Studies (U of T)

Invigilator, Test and Exam Services
University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario
December 2014 - August 2016

Test and Exam Services is the department responsible for coordinating quiz, term test, and final examination accommodations for students with documented disabilities at the University of Toronto, St. George Campus. As an Invigilator, I was responsible for:

  • Maintaining the integrity of tests and exams by adhering to departmental, academic faculty, university, and provincial policies and procedures (including the Statement of Commitment to Persons with Disabilities, the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act, and the Ontario Human Rights Code)
  • Maintaining the confidentiality of student and test/exam information
  • Ensuring accommodations authorized to students are provided
  • Addressing student concerns/problems (trained in safeTALK suicide alertness)
  • Completing required administrative records (including incident reports documenting anomalies)

Lead Researcher, Dropping Out in St. James Town: Understanding the Lived Reality of Local Early School Leavers
St. James Town Youth Collective Impact, Toronto, Ontario
June 2015 - October 2015

Dropping Out in St. James Town is a community-based research project that aims to inform understandings of youth disengagement from secondary school and support the design of a local dropout prevention program. This project makes use of a collective impact approach, mobilizing a number of community agencies and youth-led groups to address the issue of early school leaving in a collaborative manner. As the Lead Researcher, I was responsible for:

  • Preparing environmental scans
  • Reviewing scholarly literature, City of Toronto data, and data gathered by the Toronto District School Board and Ministry of Education on youth wellbeing and academic achievement
  • Conducting interviews and focus groups with diverse early school leavers and key stakeholders
  • Facilitating community consultations
  • Coordinating a Research Assistant
  • Drafting reports
  • Contributing to the development of a pilot program framework

Community Researcher and Curriculum Developer, Victimization in Vulnerable Communities (PI: Dr. Agnes Thomas)
Yonge Street Mission, Toronto, Ontario
May 2014 - November 2014

Victimization in Vulnerable Communities is a research project with the aim of developing programs and tools that address issues of peer victimization among youth in Toronto's Neighbourhood Improvement Areas. As a Community Researcher and Curriculum Developer, I am responsible for:

  • Designing a community-based research project
  • Developing survey instruments
  • Facilitating stakeholder meetings and community consultations
  • Conducting interviews, focus groups, and workshops (e.g. participatory mapping) with local youth, parents, community workers, and principals (TDSB and TCDSB)
  • Performing data entry and analysis (with SPSS and Nvivo)
  • Preparing and disseminating research findings in a variety of formats
  • Developing an anti-victimization curriculum for program use (train-the-trainer model)

Research Coordinator, The Gendered Lens (PI: Dr. Emily van der Meulen)
Ryerson University, Toronto, Ontario
September 2012 - April 2013

The Gendered Lens investigated women's experiences with video surveillance and urban security in Toronto. This project aimed to ascertain the relationship between gender, urban security, and video surveillance. As the Research Coordinator, I was responsible for:

  • Performing data analysis (with Concept Mapping Systems and NVivo)
  • Drafting manuscripts
  • Representing the project and presenting project findings at international conferences
  • Coordinating an edited book project
  • Managing the budget and accounting
  • Producing a community report and delivering it to project participants and local service providers
  • Preparing the final report for the funding agency (Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council)

Researcher, Making Law on the Street (PI: Dr. Mariana Valverde)
University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario
December 2011 - March 2012

Making Law on the Street explored the on-the-ground enforcement of municipal regulations in Toronto. Much of this research was published in Everyday Law on the Street: Urban Governance in an Age of Diversity (Valverde 2012). As a Researcher, I was responsible for:

  • Performing archival research (primarily at the City of Toronto Archives)
  • Filing records request forms
  • Obtaining permission to publish

Researcher, The Youth Gang Prevention Pilot Project (PI: Dr. Scot Wortley)
University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario
July 2010 - March 2012

The Youth Gang Prevention Pilot Project was a study on the efficacy of gang prevention/intervention programs in Toronto. This study was designed to facilitate change among gang-involved youth, youth at risk of joining gangs, families of youth who are gang-involved or at risk of gang involvement, and the broader community in areas disposed to gun and gang violence. As a Researcher, I was responsible for:

  • Coordinating and conducting interviews with local youth, community workers, and stakeholders
  • Taking field notes
  • Performing data entry (with SPSS and SpeechExec transcription software)

Program Manager, Comparative Program on Health and Society
University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario
August 2011 - December 2011

The Comparative Program on Health and Society (CPHS) is a research institute based at the Munk School of Global Affairs. CPHS supports comparative research on health through an extensive range of fellowship opportunities. As the Program Manager, I was responsible for:

  • Providing information for telephone and in-person enquiries
  • Coordinating a working paper series on health-related issues
  • Updating the program website
  • Scheduling space on calendars for meetings and special events
  • Maintaining the program mailing list
  • Ordering office supplies

Research Coordinator, HIGHRISE: Digital Citizenship Project (Director: Kat Cizek)
National Film Board of Canada, Toronto, Ontario
February 2011 - August 2011

HIGHRISE is an Emmy-winning, multi-year, many-media, collaborative documentary experiment at the National Film Board of Canada, that explores vertical living around the world. The Digital Citizenship Project focused on life in Toronto's inner-suburban towers. As the Research Coordinator, I was responsible for:

  • Designing a community-based research project
  • Developing survey instruments
  • Hiring, training, and supervising 20 Community Researchers and 5 Research Assistants
  • Performing data entry and analysis (with SPSS and Excel)
  • Liaising with local service providers
  • Participating in community capacity building activities
  • Producing a community report

Project Coordinator, Girls for Safer Communities Project
Metropolitan Action Committee on Violence Against Women and Children, Toronto, Ontario
August 2010 - November 2010

The Girls for Safer Communities Project focused on leadership, community involvement, and safety for girls and women across Canada. Community safety audits were developed for the Girl Guides of Canada and regional leaders were trained to teach younger girls to conduct their own audits. As the Project Coordinator, I was responsible for:

  • Participating in team meetings and activities to promote team work and information sharing
  • Developing a customized community safety audit system for the Girl Guides of Canada
  • Performing safety audits with community members
  • Facilitating group information and training sessions on community safety


"Partnerships for Housing: An Exploration of Corporate Governance and Competing Interests in the Regent Park Revitalization"
The Regent Park Revitalization: Research Colloquium, Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Studies. University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario.
May 27, 2016

"Surveillance, Resistance, and the Criminalizing Gaze"
**Plenary Session: Surveilling Criminalized Communities: Implications for Sex Workers, People Living with HIV, and Prisoners
Canadian Law and Society Association Conference. Ottawa, Ontario.
(Presented with Robert Heynen and Emily van der Meulen)
June 3, 2015

"Methodological Challenges"
Criminological Research Methods (with Dr. Victoria Sytsma), Criminology and Sociolegal Studies at Woodsworth College. University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario.
November 3, 2014

"Ecosystem Approaches to Health in Jane and Finch: The Role of the Built Environment"
Ecosystem Approaches to Health: Summer Workshop and Field School (with Dr. Martin J. Bunch), Canadian Community of Practice in Ecosystem Approaches to Health. York University, Toronto, Ontario.
June 3, 2014

"'Apartment Neighbourhoods' and 'Neighbourhoods' for Apartments"
7th annual Community Movements Conference, Student Association in International Development. Trent University, Peterborough, Ontario.
February 8, 2014

"Aboriginal Land and the University of Toronto"
SOAR Aboriginal Youth Gathering and Recruitment Camp, Faculty of Kinesiology and Physical Education. University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario.
March 14, 2013

"'Residential Restrictions': The Regulation of High-Rise Apartments in Toronto's Suburbs"
Lunch and Learn Series, Cities Centre. University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario.
April 27, 2012


"The Social Housing Provider as a Developer"
Challenging Traditional Notions of Property in Land Use Planning - Interdisciplinary Workshop. York University, Toronto, Ontario.
June 10, 2016

"Weston 2021: The Changing Form of Suburban Regeneration Initiatives in Toronto"
Annual Meeting, Law and Society Association. Seattle, Washington.
May 30, 2015

"Cities of Law: The Legal Construction of Cities"
Annual Meeting, Law and Society Association. Minneapolis, Minnesota.
May 30, 2014

"The Legal Regulation of Family: The Role of Built Form and Urban Location"
Annual Meeting, Law and Society Association. Boston, Massachusetts.
May 31, 2013

"Gendered Urban Security: Women's Experiences with CCTV in Toronto"
54th Annual Convention, International Studies Association. San Francisco, California
(1st author; presented with Dr. Amanda Glasbeek and Dr. Emily van der Meulen).
April 3, 2013

"The History and Geography of Toronto's Postwar Suburban High-Rises"
Sixth Biennial Urban History Association Conference, The Urban History Association.Columbia University, New York City, New York.
October 28, 2012


(In progress) Ways of Seeing Social Need: Targeted Programs and the 'Priority Neighbourhood'
with Dr. Paula Maurutto and Dr. Mariana Valverde

(2017) Toronto's Market-Oriented Subsidised Housing PPPs: A Risk Worth the Reward?
with Dr. Aaron Moore
Cities 69:64-72

(2015) 'It Depends on Who You Are, What You Are': 'Community Safety' and Sex Workers' Experience with Surveillance
1st author; with Dr. Robert Heynen and Dr. Emily van der Meulen
Surveillance & Society 13(2): 265-282

(2015) Securing the Home: Gender, CCTV and the Hybridized Space of Apartment Buildings
1st author; with Dr. Amanda Glasbeek and Dr. Emily van der Meulen
Theoretical Criminology 19(1): 95-111


Member of the Board of Management
Ralph Thornton Centre, City of Toronto
September 2015 - Present

Working Group on Tower Neighbourhoods and Immigrant Settlement, Neighbourhood Change Research Partnership
(PI: Dr. David Hulchanski)
July 2012 - July 2014

Selected Participant (competitive)
2014 Law and Society Association Graduate Student Workshop, Minneapolis, Minnesota
May 27 - 28, 2014

Graduate Associate
Cities Centre, University of Toronto
September 2011 - December 2013

Visiting Student
University of Bristol Law School, Bristol, England
(visiting with Dr. Dave Cowan and Dr. Morag McDermont)
June 2012 - July 2012

Canadian Law and Society Association
September 2011 - September 2012


Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Doctoral Fellowship
2014 - Present

Law and Society Association Conference Travel Grant, Graduate Student Workshop

University of Toronto Funding
2013 - 2014

School of Graduate Studies Conference Grant
Fall 2012

University of Toronto Funding
2012 - 2013

Ontario Graduate Scholarship
2011 - 2012

Complete curriculum vitae and references available upon request