Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)



Program Name/Specialization

Community Psychology


Faculty of Science

First Advisor

Dr. Manuel Riemer

Advisor Role


Second Advisor

Dr. Simon Coloumbe

Third Advisor

Dr. Mary Dellenbaugh-Losse


Cities are uniquely positioned to drive social change towards more just and sustainable futures. However, while discourses of ‘transformations towards sustainability’ have gained prominence, their focus on integrating equity and justice and tackling the root causes of current unsustainabilities is lacking. This document outlines a research endeavor aimed at analyzing and fostering urban sustainable transformations from a community psychology perspective. This research is based on the assertion that without radical change based in equity and justice considerations, transformative efforts fail. First, a theory of just urban sustainable transformations (JUST) is suggested that draws on urban transformations and just sustainabilities scholarship. Then, a case study is reviewed that aims to create the conditions necessary for JUST through adequate affordable housing provision. Processes and structures of change are analyzed and discussed. The findings are then applied in the context of higher education, by suggesting a higher education teaching & learning framework for just urban sustainable transformations ‐ the JUST course. It builds upon critical global citizenship and transformative education. The document concludes with a brief discussion and the role of cities in taking action.

Convocation Year


Convocation Season


Available for download on Friday, March 22, 2024