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Local Government in Canada, 9th Edition

By Kennedy Stewart, Patrick J. Smith, C. Richard Tindal, Susan Nobes Tindal
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Soft Cover
ISBN-10: 0176582975
ISBN-13: 9780176582975
Publisher: Top Hat
Edition: 9th

Over the almost 40 years it has been in print, Local Government in Canada has earned a reputation for being a comprehensive, straightforward, and readable text on municipal government in Canada. The book concentrates on providing a factual overview of municipal government developments across Canada. It has always included a historical and institutional focus, but has gradually broadened its scope and emphasis over the years to give greater attention to the economic and political context within which the municipalities operate, including an expanded discussion of the nature and impact of the forces of globalization and the increasing emphasis on multilevel governance initiatives. This ninth edition of Local Government in Canada updates data from the recent census, Statistics Canada, and related sources; it illustrates shifting local engagement; it captures local multi-level governing conversations about infrastructure deficits and what Canada’s municipalities can contribute to global ecological well-being; it reflects on the increases in local government activism; and it seeks to capture the shifting urban focus of Canada’s national government under Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (elected 2015). It previews the issues leading up to the civic elections in 2017 and 2018. Finally, it concludes with the notion that democratic politics will continue to be the well-spring to good local governing.


  • *NEW* The 9th edition includes updates in policy changes, statistical information, and trends across Canadian local governments.
  • The text continues a tradition of excellence as the most straightforward and factual overview of municipal government developments across Canada.
  • Local Government in Canada examines the broader economic and political context within which municipalities operate.
  • The text maintains thematic focus on the importance and challenge of fulfilling the representative/political role, as well as the service delivery role of municipal governments.

Table of Contents

  • Chapter 1: The Promise of Local Government
  • Chapter 2: The Legacy of the Past
  • Chapter 3: Pressures of Growth and Change
  • Chapter 4: Local Government Restructuring
  • Chapter 5: Understanding Local Government Restructuring
  • Chapter 6: Local Government Functions and Intergovernmental Relations
  • Chapter 7: Local Government Finances
  • Chapter 8: Municipal Governing Structures
  • Chapter 9: Municipal Governing Processes and Values
  • Chapter 10: Public Participation in Local Government
  • Chapter 11: Municipal Policy Making
  • Chapter 12: Future Prospects For Municipal Governments

Author Information

C. Richard Tindal

C. Richard Tindal, Ph.D., has been teaching, researching, and writing about local government for more than 40 years. For much of that period, he was a Professor of Government at St. Lawrence College in Kingston, and was Head of its Centre for Government Education and Training until taking early retirement in 1998. He also has been an occasional Visiting Professor in the School of Policy Studies at Queen's University, and has developed and taught courses via the Internet for Dalhousie University and University of Alberta.

Susan Nobes Tindal

Susan Nobes Tindal, M.Ed., LL.B., worked in the field of law for 25 years and taught courses in law and municipal government for much of that time. She has served on the executive of a number of community organizations, particularly in the health field. In 2004 she retired from her position as legal counsel for a children's aid society in Eastern Ontario.

Kennedy Stewart

Kennedy Stewart is a tenured associate professor in the School of Public Policy at Simon Fraser University. He teaches and writes about democracy, cities, and public management. Before coming to SFU in 2002, Kennedy taught at the London School of Economics and Political Science and served as the Director of the Public Policy and Public Management Program at the School of Politics and Sociology, Birkbeck College, University of London. On May 2, 2011, Kennedy was elected Member of Parliament for Burnaby-Douglas and is currently on leave from SFU.

Patrick J. Smith

Patrick Smith, PhD, is from the small rural community of Utopia, Essa Township, Simcoe County in Ontario. He has a BA (Hons) and an MA in Political Science from McMaster University, did additional graduate studies in urban planning at the London School of Economics, and completed his PhD in Government at LSE in 1977. He has taught at the UK's Open University, University of Victoria, Acadia and Dalhousie University in Nova Scotia and, since 1982, at Simon Fraser University where he is Professor, Urban Studies and Political Science, and Director of the Institute of Governance Studies. His publications include eleven books on elections, parties, voting, constitutional reform, labour markets, justice policy, and urban and metropolitan governance, as well as articles in journals such as the Canadian Journal of Political Science, International Political Science Review, Canadian Journal of Urban Research, Urban Affairs Annual Review, Canada: The State of the Federation, BC Studies, International Journal of Canadian Studies, Policy Options, Journal of Borderland Studies, and Canadian Political Science Review. He is married to Deborah Binnie Smith, PhD, who teaches ESL at Douglas College; and since May, 2011, his Member of Parliament has been Kennedy Stewart, MP, Burnaby Douglas.