University of Calgary

Barbara McNicol

  • Adjunct Professor


Barbara graduated from Simon Fraser University with a BA in Geography/Biology in 1979 and spent the next ten years working in environmental education for both Canadian National Parks and BC Provincial and Heritage Parks. With completion of an MA in 1990 she worked for one term as a Laboratory Instructor for the Geography Department at the University of Victoria and then moved to Calgary to complete a PHD in 1997. Barb has taught as an Assistant Professor at Mount Allison University in New Brunswick (1997/98) and as a full-time Sessional Instructor at the University of Calgary (1998/2000). Barb is currently an Associate Professor in the Earth Sciences Department and Assistant Director of the Institute for Environmental Sustainability (IES) at Mount Royal University. She has also worked (2003-2006) as a part-time Curriculum Development Consultant in the Academic Development Center at MRU. In 2001 she was appointed Adjunct Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography, University of Calgary and is serving a fourth term currently as an Adjunct Associate Professor.  Barbara is also Chair of the Parks and Protected Areas Research Group of IES.

Research Interest:

Research and teaching interests are in Social Environmental Geography with emphases in tourism and environment and environmental and community issues. Barbara's research concentrates on 1) human use and impacts and policy links in parks and protected areas (Pacific Rim, Banff and Jasper National Parks) 2) socio-cultural and environmental consequences of tourism growth and development for national park gateway communities (Canmore, AB) and 3) resident/community responses to landscape and land-use alterations. A recent trip was to Chile in 2007 to present a paper at the GeoAmericas conference and travel through the Atacama Desert region.

Current Research:

1. Alberta Conservation Grant: Participatory Stewardship and Group Use of Alberta's Parks, Protected Areas and Habitats-Developing a Web 2.0 Prototype to Promote Sustainable Decesion-making and the Ecological Health of Habitats. 2. Mount Royal Research Reserve Fund: Presence, Extent and Impact of International Land Ownership in Canmore, Alberta. 3. Town of Canmore, Development Office, Funding Partnership: Town of Canmore Second Home Ownership Survey 2006-2007
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