Alison Blay-Palmer is an Associate Professor at Wilfrid Laurier University in the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies where she does research on resilient food systems and sustainable communities. Her books, ‘Imagining sustainable food systems: Theory and practice’ and ‘Food fears: From industrial to sustainable food systems’ explore pressures and opportunities related to food system sustainability. Her most recent journal papers are published in Local Environment, the International Journal of Planning Studies, Economic Geography, Environment and Planning A and C, and the Canadian Journal of Regional Science.
Alison has held several grants including the most recent Social Sciences and Humanities Research Public Dissemination Outreach grant to explore and support sustainable food community initiatives. This project is linked to an Ontario Ministry of Agriculture Food and Rural Affairs grant held with Karen Landman at the University of Guelph. The combined projects span the entire province involving nine universities, eight NGOs and two government offices. Other recent projects include work to develop a Report Card for sustainable food systems in Canada, as a collaborator with researchers at the University of Guelph that explores the opportunities and barriers to get local food into Ontario hospitals and long-term care facilities, and a study on green economic development with researchers at the Monieson Center at the Queen's School of Business. She teaches courses in Human Geography (GG102), Contemporary Economic Geography (GG363), Community Economic Development (GG463/GG615), and Sustainable Food Systems (GG362 and GG693). Blay-Palmer has also received awards for teaching and faculty activism. Her early research focused on crop breeding, innovation and policy in sustainable food systems.