Daniel Ross

Historian of the city, politics, and society



Aug. 2017 – present     Assistant Professor, Département d’histoire, Université du Québec à Montréal (UQÀM)



2010 – 2017     PhD in History, York University

2009 – 2010     MA in History, York University

2001 – 2006     Honours Bachelor of Arts, History Specialist, University of Toronto


Fall 2014      Visiting Fellow, Centre for Urban History, University of Leicester, UK


Grants for research & knowledge mobilization

2021-25 Soutien aux équipes de recherche, FRQSC, grant for the Montreal History    Group/Groupe d’histoire de Montréal project « Savoir et capital à Montréal, 1800-2000 ». $325,967 over four years (co-applicant)

2021-25 Soutien à recherche pour la relève professorale, FRQSC, grant for the project “Retail, Property, and the Making of Downtown: Eaton’s as an Urban Powerbroker, 1890-1980.” $44,985 over three years (sole applicant)

2021    Programme de soutien aux initiatives structurantes de recherche, Faculté des sciences humaines, UQÀM, grant for the project “La Gendarmerie royale du Canada (GRC) et le Programme d’initiatives locales (PIL), 1971-1977,” $4,907 (sole applicant)

2019    SSHRC Connection Grant for conference “Histories of Urban Knowledge / Écrire l’histoire des savoirs urbains,” September 2019. $12,896 (co-applicant)

2017-19 Programme d’appui facultaire, Faculté des sciences humaines, UQÀM, grant for the project “The Heart of Toronto: Downtown Politics on Yonge Street,” $18,500 over three years (sole applicant)

2015    SSHRC Connection Grant for the community-based project “New Directions in Active History : Institutions, Communications, Technologies,” October 2015. $19,304 (co-applicant)

2014    SSHRC Connection Grant for the community-based project “Urban Transformations : The Past, Present, and Future of Toronto’s St. Clair West,” Toronto, June 2014. $9,200 (collaborator)


2016    Winner of the Canadian Historical Association’s (CHA) 2016 Jean-Marie Fecteau Prize for the article « “Vive la vélorution !” : Le Monde à bicyclette et les origines du mouvement cycliste à Montréal, 1975-1980. » Awarded to the best article published in a peer-reviewed journal by a graduate student in Canada in 2015. $250

2016    Co-recipient (with the other members of the Active History Editorial Collective) of the CHA’s 2016 Public History Prize for the website ActiveHistory.ca


Research fields

Canadian history (19th – 20th centuries)

North American urban history (19th – 20th centuries)


Academic books

The Heart of Toronto: Remaking Downtown Yonge Street. Vancouver: UBC Press, 2022.


Peer-reviewed articles

“The Politics of Public Space: Toronto’s Yonge Street Pedestrian Mall, 1971-1974,” Urban History Review/Revue d’histoire urbaine 47: 1-2 (Fall/Spring 2018-19), pp. 89-102.

« “Vive la vélorution !” : Le Monde à bicyclette et les origines du mouvement cycliste à Montréal, 1975-1980, » Bulletin d’histoire politique 23 : 2 (Hiver 2015), pp. 92-112.           Winner of the CHA’s 2016 Jean-Marie Fecteau Prize

“Panic on Love Street : Citizens and Local Government Respond to Vancouver’s Hippie Problem, 1967-68,” BC Studies, 180 (Winter 2013/14), pp. 11-41


Book chapters

(With Matthieu Caron) “Introduction,” Urban History Review/Revue d’histoire urbaine 47: 1-2 (Fall/Spring 2018-19), pp. 5-10.

“Introduction,” in Daniel Ross, ed. Confronting Canadian Migration History (Active History, 2019).

“‘Vive la vélorution!’ : Le Monde à bicyclette and the Origins of Cycling Advocacy in Montreal,” in Colin Coates, ed. Canadian Countercultures and the Environment (University of Calgary Press, 2016), pp. 127-50


Educational resources

(With Laura Madokoro) Canadian Immigration Syllabus (Active History, 2019).

“Digital History in the Classroom: Mapping Montréal Migration Stories,” in Andrea Eidinger and Krista McCracken, eds., Beyond the Lecture: Innovations in Teaching Canadian History (Active History, 2019), 90-96.


Edited collections & special issues

(With Harold Bérubé, Michèle Dagenais, and Jean-Christophe Racette) “Écrire l’histoire des savoirs urbains/Histories of Urban Knowledge,” a five-article special issue of the Urban History Review/Revue d’histoire urbaine 49: 2 (Winter 2022).

(With Mathieu Caron) “Bad behaviours and disorderly public spaces,” an eight-article special issue of Urban History Review/Revue d’histoire urbaine 47: 1-2 (Fall/Spring 2018-19).

Editor, Confronting Canadian Migration History, a 15-article open-access ebook (Active History, 2019), 109 pp.


Book reviews

Barbour, Dale. Undressed Toronto: From the Swimming Hole to Sunnyside, How a City Learned to Love the Beach, 1850–1935. H-Environment Roundtable Review, 13:2 (2023), pp. 13-15.

Barbour, Dale. Undressed Toronto: From the Swimming Hole to Sunnyside, How a City Learned to Love the Beach, 1850–1935. Canadian Historical Review 103:3 (September 2022), 489-91.

Mackintosh, Phillip Gordon, Newspaper City: Toronto’s Street Surfaces and the Liberal Press, 1860-1935. University of Toronto Quarterly, 88:3 (2019), pp. 144–146.

White, Richard, Planning Toronto: The Planners, the Plans, Their Legacies, 1940-1980. Canadian Historical Review 99:4 (Winter 2018), 669-70.

Mackintosh, Phillip Gordon, Newspaper City: Toronto’s Street Surfaces and the Liberal Press, 1860-1935. Historical Geography 45 (2017), pp. 271-72.

Armstrong, Christopher, Making Toronto Modern: Architecture and Design, 1895-1975. Urban History Review/Revue d’histoire urbaine 44:1-2 (2016), pp. 76

White, Richard, Planning Toronto: The Planners, the Plans, Their Legacies, 1940-1980. Christopher Moore’s History News, 2016

Sewell, John, How We Changed Toronto. ActiveHistory.ca, 2015

Squires, Jessica, Building Sanctuary: The Movement to Support Vietnam War Resisters in Canada, 1965-73. BC Studies, 184 (Winter 2014/2015), pp. 164-65

Champion, C. P., The Strange Demise of British Canada: The Liberals and Canadian Nationalism, 1964-68. H-Canada, H-Net Reviews, 2011


In the popular press

“Yonge Street Mall: Fun and failure of ‘70s pedestrian project,” Spacing Magazine (Winter 2016), pp. 38-41

“Sex on Yonge: Examining the decade when Yonge Street was the city’s sin strip,” Spacing Magazine (Fall 2014), pp. 24-27

“150 Years of Bikes in Toronto,” Spacing Magazine (Spring 2014), p. 40


Blog posts

“Saving Chinatown, 1971 to 2021,” ActiveHistory.ca (July 26, 2021).

(With Laura Madokoro) “A Canadian Immigration Syllabus,” ActiveHistory.ca (Jan. 7, 2019).

“Active History in 2018: Taking stock,” ActiveHistory.ca (May 10, 2018).

“Digital History in the Classroom: Mapping Montreal Migration Stories,” ActiveHistory.ca (March 7, 2018).

(With Tom Peace). “What does Canadian history look like? Active History at the 2016 CHA,” ActiveHistory.ca (May 26, 2016)

“How Did the Urban Reformers Change Toronto?” ActiveHistory.ca (December 10, 2015)

(With Tom Peace). “Exploring New Directions in Active History,” ActiveHistory.ca (September 28, 2015)

“The Die-In: A Short History,” ActiveHistory.ca (June 29, 2015)

“Toronto vs. Montréal: A Short History,” ActiveHistory.ca (May 6, 2015)

“The king in a car park: Digging up Richard III,” ActiveHistory.ca (January 29, 2015)

“Feeling the City: Getting at the Historical Sights and Sounds of Downtown,” ActiveHistory.ca (October 6, 2014)

(With Jay Young) “Urban Transformations: An Avenue for Academic Work in the Community,” ActiveHistory.ca (July 14, 2014)

(With Jay Young) “An Idea Whose Time Has Come: A City Museum for Toronto,” ActiveHistory.ca (June 17, 2014). Finalist for Toronto Heritage Awards Short Publication Prize in 2015

“The Value of Thinking Big: Experimenting with Pedestrian Space in Toronto, 1970s to 2014,” ActiveHistory.ca (April 28, 2014)

“Yonge Love: Crowd-sourcing the History of Toronto’s Main Drag,” ActiveHistory.ca (November 14, 2013)

“Into the Secret Archive: An Interview with the Authors of Secret Service,” ActiveHistory.ca (September 3, 2013)

(With Colin Coates) “‘American Commune’: two views of a documentary about the 1970s counterculture,” ActiveHistory.ca (May 6, 2013)

“Development, Community, and Citizen Activism in Toronto’s Kensington Market: 1960s and 2013,” ActiveHistory.ca (March 7, 2013)

“Municipal Conflicts of Interest in Canada, Old and New,” ActiveHistory.ca (December 4, 2012, August 26, 2013)

“Active History on Stage: Party People at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival,” ActiveHistory.ca (September 19, 2012)



Conference and event organization

2020-  Co-organizer and host for the Jeudis d’histoire series of talks in Canadian history (annual series, 2020-present)

2019   Co-organizer and coordinator of the exhibit Remember/Resist/Redraw: Une histoire radicale du Canada en images (UQÀM, October 23-November 1)

2019    Co-organizer of the conference Écrire l’histoire des savoirs urbains (Université de Montréal, September 27-28).

2015    Co-organizer of the conference New Directions in Active History: Institutions, Communications, Technologies, (Huron College, October 2-4). 60 participants, SSHRC Connection Grant

2014    Co-organizer of the public-academic symposium Urban Transformations: The Past, Present, and Future of Toronto’s St. Clair West, (Toronto, June 20-22). 25 participants, public lecture with attendance of 100, SSHRC Connection Grant

2012    Organizing Assistant for the workshop Borderlands, Transnationalism, and Immigration to North America, (York University, October 19-20). 25 participants, public lecture with attendance of 50 personnnes, SSHRC Connection Grant

2012    Co-organizer of the 16th New Frontiers in Graduate History Conference (York University, February 23-25). 120 participants


Peer-reviewed conference presentations

“Author meets critics: Montreal: City of Water,” Annual Meeting of the Canadian Historical Association (Vancouver, June 2019).

“Youth and the Politics of Public Space: The Yonge Street Pedestrian Mall,” Annual Meeting of the Canadian Historical Association (Regina, May 2018)

“Roundtable on History and Social Media,” Annual Meeting of the Canadian Historical Association (Toronto, June 2017)

“Downtown at a Crossroads: Saving, Improving, and Rebuilding Toronto’s Yonge Street,” Biennial Meeting of the Urban History Association (Chicago, October 2016)

“Planning for Progress, Planning for People: The Eaton Centre and the Development Debate in Toronto,” Annual Meeting of the Canadian Historical Association (Ottawa, June 2015)

“‘Downtown is for Everybody’: Citizen Activism and the Sex Industry on Toronto’s Yonge Street, 1972-1973,” Colloque : Mobilisations politiques et prises de parole citoyenne au Québec et au Canada (Montréal, October 2014)

“Streets for People: Downtown Revitalization and Toronto’s Yonge Street Pedestrian Mall,” 2nd World Congress of Environmental History (Guimarães, Portugal, July 2014)

“Pedestrians, Pollution and Vice on Toronto’s Yonge St. Mall, 1971-74,” Annual Meeting of the American Society for Environmental History (San Francisco, March 2014)

“‘Vive la Vélorution!’: Le Monde à bicyclette Imagines a Bikeable City, 1975-85,” Annual Meeting of the Canadian Historical Association (Victoria, June 2013)

“The Battle for Love Street: Vancouverites Confront Kitsilano’s Hippie Problem, 1967-8,” New Frontiers in Graduate History Conference (York University, February 2011)

“Le combat pour Love Street, 1967-8,” 11e Colloque de l’ARTEFACT (Université Laval, February 2011)

“Canada through the Eyes of Vietnam War Resisters, 1968-71,” Crossing Borders Conference (Niagara Falls, NY, March 2010)

Invited lectures

“Debating and Regulating Sin Strip, 1972-1977,” (Ryerson University Criminology Department, February 2021)

“The Summer of ’77: Sin Strip,” Community Conversations: The Summer of ’77 (Toronto, June 22, 2017)

“Yonge Street as an Avenue into Toronto’s History,” Jeudi d’histoire du Groupe d’histoire de Montréal (McGill University, February 23, 2017)

“Private Parts in Public Places: Toronto Debates the Sex Industry, 1972-1977,” Centre for Urban History (University of Leicester, UK, November 11, 2014)

Participant/group leader, “Visioning Workshop: The New Museum of Toronto,” DIALOG/Museum of Toronto (St. Lawrence Hall, Toronto, June 3, 2014)

“Toronto the Good? Vice and Virtue on the Yonge Street Strip,” Toronto Public Library, (December 4, 2013)

“On Networks: Cycling Advocacy,” Workshops for Inter-discipline Exchange and Novelty (WIDEN) (University of Toronto, March 21, 2013)


Historical walking tours

Co-developer and leader “Creating Toronto: The Story of the City in Seven Stops,” walking tour for Heritage Toronto, delivered 5 times in summer 2015


“The Fight for Yonge Street,” Witness to Yesterday Podcast #189 (June 10, 2022).

“The Story of Yonge St, a City’s Transformation, & the Heart of Toronto,” History Slam Podcast #208 (March 31, 2022)

“The looming end of Toronto’s Brass Rail Tavern,” Globe and Mail (April 1, 2021).

“How do we ensure Toronto bars thrive in the After Time?” Toronto Star (May 13, 2020).

“In the east vs west debate in Toronto, west wins the snob contest hands down,” Toronto Star (June 4, 2019).

“Yonge at heart and with hopes pinned on a fresh start,” Globe and Mail (May 3, 2019).

“Over 60 million pages of digitized Canadian heritage documents now accessible,” University Affairs (January 21, 2019).

“Toronto’s been road-raging about cars, bikes and streetcars for over 100 years,” Toronto Star (January 27, 2018)

“The meaning of Yonge Street, Toronto’s civic spine,” Maclean’s (April 24, 2018).

“Active History website aims to ‘get history out of the university,’” University Affairs (December 5, 2017)

“How a child’s death led to the rebirth of Yonge Street,” Globe & Mail (July 22, 2017)

“O homicídio de Emanuel Jaques: 40 anos depois,” Sol Português (June 30, 2017)

“Murder of Emanuel Jaques changed the face of Yonge Street and Toronto,” CBC News & Metro Morning (June 22, 2017).

“Doing History: Daniel Ross,” Rapport, blog of the Ontario History and Social Science Teachers Association (March 16, 2017).

“Pressing Pause on Development,” CBC Six O’Clock News Toronto (December 16, 2016), 11:56

“Heritage Award Round-up,” Bloor West Villager (September 27, 2015)

“The History of St. Clair West,” CBC Here and Now with Gill Deacon (June 20, 2014)

History Slam Podcast #23: Congress Recap (June 12, 2013)

“Tossing the Boss throughout the Years,” Toronto Star (January 7, 2013)



University teaching

Graduate courses, UQAM

HIS9030, Séminaire du doctorat

HIS8037 Histoire du Québec et du Canada au XXe siècle

HIS7013 Méthodologie de la recherche historique

HIS7080 Les années 1960. Transformations sociales, politiques, et culturelles en Amérique du Nord


Undergraduate courses, UQAM

HIS559B Penser l’histoire environnementale au Québec et au Canada

HIS4549 Les villes au Québec et au Canada

HIS6001/6002 La ville à travers l’histoire, la ville dans l’histoire

HIS558U L’immigration au Québec au XXe siècle

HIS490C La ville nord-américaine dans tous ses états

HIS4567 Histoire de l’immigration et les communautés ethnoculturelles au Québec

Graduate Teaching Assistant, Canadian Studies 1920: Introduction to Canadian Studies (Glendon College, York University)

English Lecteur (Département des Langues et Civilisations, Université de Toulouse 1, France)




2021-present  Samia Dumais. « Le Second Congrès des Femmes Noires, 1974 : Mobilité, influences et représentations ». Projet en cours.

2020-present  Lysanne Deschênes. « L’étude des journaux québécois dans la période de l’après-guerre et de la représentation des enjeux liés à l’immigration catholique à Montréal ». Projet en cours.

2019-present  (co-supervision with Martin Petitclerc) Hamza Tabaïchount. « La société Québécoise de solidarité internationale (SQSI) et l’impact du milieu associatif sur la question des réfugiés au québec : 1980-1998 ». Projet en cours.

2019-present  Simon Berger. « « Nous autres locataires » : organisation et radicalisation du mouvement pour le logement dans les années 70 à Montréal ». Projet en cours.


2021-present  (co-supervision with Magda Farhni) Thomas Jourdan.

2021-present  (co-supervision with Magda Fahrni) Jonathan DiGregorio. « Les violences en milieu populaire : étude du quartier Red Light de Montréal de 1909 à 1954 ».


Committee membership

2014 –                 Member of the Editorial Collective and Public Outreach and Partnerships Coordinator for ActiveHistory.ca

2012 – 2014        Co-Chair, Graduate Student Committee of the CHA

2012 – 2014        Member of the Executive Board, Robarts Centre for Canadian                                 Studies (York University)

2013                    Member of the Tenure Review Committee, Department of History (York University)


Professional memberships

Canadian Historical Association

Network in Canadian History and Environment (NiCHE)

Urban History Association

Editor and journal manager

2018 –               Member, Editorial Board, Urban History Review/Revue d’histoire urbaine

2014 –              Co-editor of the site ActiveHistory.ca. Responsible for dozens of blogs and articles, including popular series on Terry Fox (spring 2015), the history of refugees in Canada (October 2015), urban planning in Toronto (2016 – 2017) and the film The Revenant in historical perspective (January 2016)

2009 – 2015     Managing Editor, French Language for Historical Studies in                                Education / Revue d’histoire de l’éducation


Teaching resources

2019                  Project coordinator and lead author (with Laura Madokoro), A Canadian Immigration History Syllabus

2018-                Member, Comité Histoire-Hypermedia (h-h.ca)

Contact me



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