Our Local Government Program, which was established in 1974, offers unique opportunities to study in the areas of local government and public administration, through both a Graduate Diploma in Public Administration (GDPA) and Masters in Public Administration (MPA). The GDPA provides specialized education in local administration and policy analysis, better preparing students for the challenges of modern community, urban and regional governance and administration. Our MPA Program is one of Canada’s leading graduate programs specializing in local level public administration. It is designed for mid-career local government officials wishing to further their public management skills as well as for future professionals seeking careers in municipal government.

We invite you to explore our Local Government Program website and to contact us with any questions you may have.

Featured News

Professor Lyons - New Book Chapter

Professor Joe Lyons and Law instructor Dave Taylor (MPA’17) have published a co-authored book chapter with Zachary Spicer (PhD’13) about municipally owned corporations in Canada. The chapter is part of a co-edited book entitled, Corporatisation in Local Government: Context, Evidence and Perspectives from 19 Countries and can be accessed here: https://link.springer.com/book/10.1007/978-3-031-09982-3.

Event: Metropolitan Governance Panel at University of Toronto 

Prof. Zack Taylor of the Department of Political Science and Local Government Program will participate in a panel discussion on “Making the Case for Regionalism” hosted by the University of Toronto’s School of Cities in partnership with Institute on Municipal Finance and Governance (IMFG). The event will review the need for coordinating structures, tools, and resources that cities can use to act regionally, compete with other global city-regions, and improve the social and economic outcomes of residents. 
Don Iveson, 35th Mayor of Edmonton, former Chair of Canada’s Big City Mayors, and Canadian Urban Leader at the University of Toronto’s School of Cities.
Jen Nelles, Senior Research Fellow with the Innovation Caucus and co-director of the Oxford Regions, Innovation, and Enterprise Lab (ORIEL), Oxford Brookes Business School, United Kingdom.
Zack Taylor, Associate Professor, Dept. of Political Science and Local Government Program, Western University.

The hybrid event will occur on January 17, 2023 from 5:30–7:30pm at the Campbell Conference Centre in the Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy, University of Toronto. Participants can also join on-line. Register at: https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/making-the-case-for-regionalism-tickets-474124538257.  

Professor Emeritus Andrew Sancton Publishes Article On Infrastructure Finance

Professor Emeritus Andrew Sancton has published a new article, “Reassessing the Case for Development Charges in Canadian Municipalities,” in the journal Canadian Planning and Policy. In it he challenges dominant thinking about how new urban infrastructure should be financed, that “growth should pay for growth.” Instead, drawing on the experience of other jurisdictions, he argues that the costs of growth-related infrastructure and facilities should mostly be funded by taxpayers, who collectively benefit from urban agglomeration. As development charges constitute a substantial portion of the cost of new housing in Ontario, this would likely improve housing affordability. The article is based on a research report by Sancton published by Western’s Centre for Urban Policy and Local Governance in 2021.

2022 MPA Grad Wei Jiang - Silver Medalist, Thought Leadership Awards

Wei Jiang (MPA '22) was selected as the Local Government Program's recipient of the National Student and Thought Leadership Award, a joint initiative of CAPPA & IPAC. She was invited to present her research in an e-poster competition and she was awarded the silver medal. Congratulations Wei!

Professor Joe Lyons and Zac Spicer (PhD '13) - New Article Publication

Professor Joe Lyons and Zac Spicer (PhD '13) have recently published a new article entitled “Small Town, Short Work Week: Evaluating the Effects of a Compressed Work Week Pilot in Zorra, Ontario, Canada” in the journal State and Local Government Review. The paper is open access and can be downloaded for free here. Congratulations!

MPA Alumni Paul Wilton – 2022 Bertram Scholar

Paul Wilton, MPA Alumni and current Higher Education PhD student at the University of Toronto has been awarded a 2022 Bertram Scholarship from the Canadian Foundation for Governance Research (CFGR). http://www.cfgr.ca/bertram-scholars/2022scholars.php. Congratulations Paul and we wish you good luck in your PhD research!

Political Science Alumnus Enters Mayoral Race

Local Government Program (LGP) Recruitment and Development Officer, Deputy Mayor, and Political Science Alumnus, Josh Morgan, is running for London Mayor Fall 2022. To read the full story, please visit Global News.

Local Government Program (LGP) Expands to Western's Downtown Site

The Local Government Program (LGP) was recently featured in a Western News article announcing a new downtown hub located at 450 Talbot Street in London, Ontario.

Joe Lyons and Zachary Spicer - Western News Article and Research Study

Workers welcome shortened work week, Joe Lyons and Zachary Spicers research study finds. In this pilot project, staff were on the job for 10-hour days, four days a week, which also meant municipal offices were open longer hours, at no extra cost to taxpayers.