What cities are included in this study, and why?

This project examines the role of the mayor in 10 Canadian cities, the largest in each province:

  • Vancouver, British Columbia
  • Calgary, Alberta
  • Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
  • Toronto, Ontario
  • Montreal, Quebec
  • Saint John, New Brunswick
  • Halifax, Nova Scotia
  • Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
  • St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador


Why were these cities selected?

Case selection is a critical, and often challenging, aspect of any research project. The approach of focusing on the largest city in each province was selected for a few reasons. First, in order to produce a Canada-wide study, it is critical to examine cities in all provinces, particularly as the formal authorities of mayors are primarily assigned through provincial legislation and because municipalities in Canada are creatures of the provinces in which they reside. Second, the sample includes some diversity of city size and scale. The sample represents approximately 20% of the Canadian population, and includes some of the largest cities in Canada with more than a million residents (Toronto, Montreal, Calgary), as well as smaller cities with fewer than one hundred thousand residents (Charlottetown and Saint John). Third, the sample includes five capital cities and five non-capital cities, allowing for an interesting comparison of how this may or may not influence the role of the mayor. Finally, this approach follows an established precedent for case selection in national studies of local government in Canada (such as Martin Horak and Robert Young’s (eds) Sites of Governance: Multilevel Governance and Policy Making in Canada’s Big Cities, 2012).

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