Michael Widener

Chair, St. George Campus and Director of Planning
University College, B202



Dalla Lana School of Public Health - Epidemiology
Health Studies Program at University College

Fields of Study

Areas of Interest

GIS, Spatial Analysis & Modelling; Urban; Economic Geography;Social & Political Geography; Health Geography, Transportation Geography, Built Environment and Health/Well Being, Time Use, Food Environments, Older Adults


Michael J. Widener is a Canada Research Chair (Tier 2) in Transportation and Health at the University of Toronto - St. George. He also serves as the Director of Health Studies at University College, and as an Associate Professor in Geography and Planning, with a cross-appointment in Epidemiology at the Dalla Lana School of Public Health. Outside of UofT, Dr. Widener serves on various journals’ editorial boards, is a member of CIHR’s College of Reviewers, co-leads the Social and Health Factors Cluster of the Network of European Communication & Transportation Activity Researchers, and co-chairs the Prioritizing Populations theme of the Mobilizing Justice Partnership. Dr. Widener is a health geographer whose research focuses on how public health affects, and is affected by, movement and transportation systems. His primary project at the moment is an exploration of how time pressure, transportation options, and divisions of household labour impact access to food and dietary behaviours. Additional studies are focused on the links between mobility, mental health, and isolation for older adult populations, and on how advanced geospatial technologies (like GPS) can be used to provide useful insights for public health policy. In the classroom, Dr. Widener teaches courses on geographic information science, mapping health data, and spatial statistics at the undergraduate and graduate levels.


PhD, University at Buffalo (SUNY) MSc, Florida State University BA, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Administrative Service

Chair, Geography and Planning (St. George)
Director of Planning