Benjamin Forest




McGill University
Department of Geography
Address: 805 Sherbrooke St. West
Tel: 514-398-4111
Email: benjamin.forest@mcgill.ca







Education
PhD Geography, UCLA


Research
Benjamin Forest is an Associate Professor at McGill University in the Department of Geography as well as an Associate Member of the Department of Political Science. A specialist in the field of political geography, his work revolves around the theme of diversity and electoral reform. In addition to being part of a project studying monuments and memorials in the post-Soviet sphere, Professor Forest is currently heading a project on diversity in party structures and constituencies in Canada. He is also working on research exploring municipal LGBTQ policies.



Research Axis
Axis 2: Practicing Citizenship in a Skeptical World - The practice of democratic citizenship is undergoing a multifaceted transition. There are fundamental changes in conceptions of democratic citizenship and in its practice as well as the targets of citizen action. Scepticism about representative democracy as a system of governance is growing and citizens across established democracies are withdrawing from politics. Their perception about the political world is impacted by transformations in the news media practices and by online content, including social media. Voting and party politics have been the basis of conventional interpretations of citizenship, but there is ample evidence that this conception is much too limited. New forms of communication are providing citizens with novel ways to gather information and to engage in politics.

Axis 3: Representing and Governing Citizens in Critical Times - After learning and practicing democratic citizenship, the next critical steps are representation and governance. Democratic institutions are key elements. They shape the norms and incentives for active citizenship and they link citizens and their representatives in ways that foster accountability, legitimacy and representation. In Québec and Canada, as well as in other countries, confidence of citizens toward the institutions is low, as many dislike the way that members of parliaments behave and consider that politicians don’t honour their promises, hence various political endeavours to reform these institutions. Research on this axis will focus on the role of electoral systems, parliaments, parliamentary debates, and political parties.



Students
Chris Erl, PhD
(Start: 2016)
This project examines the relationship between political institutions, particularly parties and candidate diversity in Canadian municipal governments.

Erika De Torres, MA
(Start: 2015)
Does context matter for issue and party preference? Using the MEDW 2015, I examine the impact of place of residence for people's party preferences and issue preferences within Ontario, Quebec and British Columbia.



Publications
Electoral Geography
Journal: Encyclopedia of Geography
Year: 2010
Publisher: Sage Publications


Political Representation
Journal: International Encyclopedia of Human Geography
Volume: 254
issue: 259
Year: 2009
Publisher: Elsevier


Concepts géographiques dans la loi: échelle, ségrégation et les minorités raciales
Journal: Géographie du droit: Epistémologie, développement et perspectives
Volume: 93
issue: 116
Year: 2009
Publisher: Presses de l¿Université Laval


The Territorial Politics of Representation
Journal: The Handbook of Political Geography
Year: 2008
First Page: 375
Last Page: 388
Publisher: Sage Publications


The Politics of Public Space: Regime Type and Public Memory in Post-Communist States, 1996-2008.
Journal: Post-Soviet Affairs
Year: 2010


Electoral Redistricting and Minority Political Representation in Canada and the United States
Journal: The Canadian Geographer
Volume: 56
issue: 3
Year: 2012
First Page: 318
Last Page: 338


Monumental Politics: Regime Type and Public Memory in Post-Communist States
Journal: Post-Soviet Affairs
Volume: 27
issue: 3
Year: 2011
First Page: 269
Last Page: 288


The Imputed Demographic and Political Characteristics of the Proposed Federal Ridings for Quebec
Journal: Report submitted to the Federal Electoral Boundaries Commission for Quebec
Year: 2012


It's time for effective representation for national minorities
Journal: Montreal Gazette
Year: 2012
Place: Montreal


It's time for effective representation for national minorities
Journal: The Montreal Gazette
Year: 2012
Place: Montreal


Agent-Based Simulation of Urban Residential Dynamics and Land Rent Change in a Gentrifying Area of Boston
Journal: Transactions in GIS
Volume: 12
issue: 4
Year: 2008
First Page: 475
Last Page: 491


Engineering the North American Waterscape: The High Modernist Mapping of Continental Water Transfer Projects
Journal: Political Geography
Volume: 31
issue: 3
Year: 2012
First Page: 167
Last Page: 183


Unrepresented No More: Noncontiguous Ridings could Enhance Aboriginals’ Voice in our Political Institutions
Journal: In Roads
Volume: 34
issue: 9
Year: 2014
First Page: 119
Last Page: 125
Benjamin Forest


It’s time for effective representation for national minorities
Journal: The Gazette
Volume: 27
Year: 2012
Benjamin Forest


Security and Atonement: Controlling Access to the World Trade Center Memorial
Journal: cultural geographies
Volume: 20
issue: 3
Year: 2013
First Page: 405
Last Page: 411
Juliet Johnson


Redistricting and the Elusive Ideals of Representation
Journal: Political Geography
Volume: 32
issue: 1
Year: 2013
First Page: 15
Last Page: 17


La géographie de l’élection 2012 au Québec
Journal: Les Québécois aux urnes: les partis, les médias et les citoyens en campagne
Year: 2013
First Page: 247
Last Page: 266
Place: Montréal
Publisher: Presses UdM


Electoral Geography
Journal: International Encyclopedia of Geography
Year: 2016


Legal Geography
Journal: International Encyclopedia of Geography
Year: 2016


Representation of Minority Communities in the Canadian and American Political Systems
Journal: Journal of Parliamentary and Political Law
Year: 2014