Nicolas Brunet

Assistant Professor (Latornell Professor in Environmental Stewardship)
Phone number: 
519-824-4120 ext. 54414
Landscape Architecture, Room 114
Rural Planning and Development; Rural Studies PhD

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  • PhD (McGill)
  • M.Sc. Planning (Guelph)
  • B.Sc. (McGill)


Dr. Nicolas Brunet is an Assistant Professor in the School of Environmental Design and Rural Development at the University of Guelph, where he holds the Latornell Professorship in Environmental Stewardship. His research program uses social ecological systems thinking to propose innovative approaches to community and regional planning and development. In particular, he is interested in the diverse knowledge systems and paradigms, and approaches (citizen science, community-based monitoring (CBM), environmental guardians, etc.) that support environmental decision-making. Much of his research is co-developed with Indigenous and northern agencies and governments in Canada and focuses upon the governance of wildlife and plants of cultural and economic significance. His research emphasizes the critical role of effective partnerships in achieving beneficial outcomes from research. His work has been influential in formulating research policy and understanding the development potential of environmental science and technology on local development. He is also current seeking opportunities to apply these approaches in southern Ontario.

Current active research activities includes a SSHRC-funded project exploring the role of environmental researchers in Inuit youth land-based learning through collaborative science literacy activities (2017-2019). This work is conducted in partnership with and partially funded by Environment and Climate Change Canada and the Nunavut Research Institute. He is also currently working with the Government of Alberta, several First Nations leaders and land managers, as well as a multidisciplinary team of collaborators in establishing community-based fish monitoring initiatives (2017-2019). The co-design of these CBM programs is currently underway in three regions impacted by oil developments in Northern Alberta. He is particularly interested in furthering scientific understanding of the governance processes that lead to successful CBM programs in resource dependant and Indigenous communities.