Graduate Profiles

Bardekjian, Adrina


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  • Year Entered: 2008

    Student Info

    Dissertation Title

    Learning from Limbwalkers: Political Ecology and Urban Forest Narratives in Southern Ontario

    Comprehensive Areas

    • Foraging the Urban Forest: Beyond Cultural Constructions and Common Consumptions of Nature
    • Political Ecology and Urban Forestry: Culture, Narrative and Negotiation

    Supervisory Committee

    • Don Dippo
    • Dr. Cecil Konijnendijk van den Bosch
    • L. Anders Sandberg (Chair)
    • Leesa Fawcett

    Previous Education

  • 2001 B.A. Creative Writing, Literature, Anthropology: Concordia University, Montréal
  • 2001 RSA/CELTA English Language Teaching Certificate: Language Studies Canada
  • 2002 Publishing and Multimedia: Ryerson University, Toronto
  • 2003 Horticulture Apprenticeship: Humber College, Toronto
  • 2005 Master of Forest Conservation (MFC): Faculty of Forestry, University of Toronto
  • Publications



    • Refereed Articles
      • Bardekjian, A., Classens, M., & Sandberg, L. A. (2012). Reading the Urban Landscape: The Case of a Campus Tour at York University, Ontario, Canada. Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences, 2(3), 249-256.
    • Book Chapters
      • Bardekjian, A. (2010). Marginal Medleys: How transition towns and climate camps are relocalizing the global climate crisis. In L. A. Sandberg & T. Sandberg (Eds.), Climate Change - Who's Carrying the Burden? The chilly climates of the global environmental dilemma. Ottawa, ON: The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.

    • Book Reviews
      • Bardekjian, A. (2013). Book Review: Stéphane Castonguay & Michèle Dagenais Eds. (2011). Metropolitan Natures: Environmental Histories of Montreal. Environments, 38(1), 104-105
      • Bardekjian, A. (2012). Book Review: Chris Maser (2010). Social environmental planning: The design interface between Everyforest and Everycity. The Canadian Geographer/Le Geographe Canadien. 56(3), 385.

      • Bardekjian, A. (2009). Book Review: Nik Heynen, Maria Kaika, Eric Swyngedouw Eds. (2006). In the Nature of Cities: Urban political ecology and the politics of urban metabolism.


    • Non-refereed Articles
      • Bardekjian, A. (2013). Reflections on Organizing the Urban Forests & Political Ecologies Conference 2013. Commonwealth Forestry Association Newsletter, 61, 9-11.

      • Bardekjian, A. (2013). Boyer Woodlot: A Living Place of Symbiotic Stories: Exploring woodlots as place-makers of culture, time and resistance. The Alternative Campus Tour.

      • Bardekjian, A. (2011). Of Remnants and Reveries: Narratives of the Urban Forest on Campus. The Professional Forester, 203, 13.

      • Bardekjian, A. (2011). What a Wonderful World. Kidney Living Magazine, 4 (1), 16.

      • Bardekjian Ambrosii, A. (2008). Building International Bridges for Forest Futures. Canadian Trees, 4(2), 7.

      • Bardekjian Ambrosii, A. (2008). Trees Ontario: Planting past the treeline. Canadian Trees, 4(2), 6.

      • Bardekjian Ambrosii, A. (2007). The role of urban forests in mitigating human health issues caused or exacerbated by the urban environment: The Toronto District School Board: Setting an example for urban forest management. Community Experiences in Urban Forestry, 1: 18-19.

      • Bardekjian Ambrosii, A. (2007). The Beauty of Tall Tree Tales. Canadian Trees, 3(2), 12.

      • Bardekjian Ambrosii, A. (2007). The Need for Sustainable forests in Armenia: The lengths a non-profit organization is going to mitigate the effects of deforestation. Canadian Trees, 4(1), 28-29.

      • Bardekjian Ambrosii, A. (2006). Urban trees and Public Health. Canadian Trees, 3(1), 5.

      • Bardekjian Ambrosii, A. (2006). Greening our Schoolgrounds. Canadian Trees, 2(1), 30-31.


    • Creative Works
      • Tree Canada: A Visual History. (2012). Celebrating Tree Canada's 20-year legacy in photographs. Comp. Bardekjian, A., Apple Inc.
      • Ruhrgebeit, Germany: European Capital of Culture 2010. (2011). Ruhr Study Tour 2010: Canadian Centres for German and European Studies, York University and Unviersité de Montréal. Photography by Bardekjian A., and Rodrigues, R. Apple Inc.
      • Bardekjian Ambrosii, A. (2010). Cerebral Celibacy. [Online] Antipode: A Radical Journal for Geographers. Temporarily available at: 
    • Commissioned Reports and Projects
      • A Healthy Dose of Green: a prescription for a healthy population. (2012). Trees Ontario. White Paper. Contributions to findings and final review. Available online at:
      • Bardekjian, A. (2011). Quantity vs. Quality: Towards common ends. Conference Presentation. Spreading Roots: Working together to protect our urban trees. Perf. Keen, R. Trees Ontario.
      • Rosen, M., Kenney, A., Bardekjian, A. & Fournier, G. (2007). Department of National Defence Urban Forest Program #1E0800292. Commissioned to Tree Canada by the Department of National Defence, Canada.
      • Urban Forest Strategic Management Plan for the Town of Oakville 2008-2027. 2008. Commissioned to Urban Forest Innovations Inc. and Andy Kenney. Assisted in the development of the plan while working as an Associate Consultant. Available online at:
      • Bardekjian Ambrosii, A. (2006). Compendium of Best Management Practices for Canadian Urban Forests. Commissioned to Tree Canada by Natural Resources Canada. Available online at:
      • Development Guidelines for Shade for the City of Toronto. (2010). Commissioned by Toronto Public Health, Cancer Prevention Coalition in collaboration with Parks Forestry and Recreation, City of Toronto. Assisted in the research and development while working as an Associate Consultant and Writer (2008). Available online at:
      • Grounds For Action: Promoting Physical Activity through School Ground Greening in Canada. (2006). Commissioned to Evergreen Learning Grounds by the Public Health Agency of Canada. Assisted in the research and development of this project. Lead researchers: Bell, A., and Dyment, J.
      • Bardekjian Ambrosii, A. & Campbell, H. (2005). How to Conduct a Shade Audit. In collaboration with Parks Forestry and Recreation, City of Toronto. Commissioned by Toronto Public Health, Cancer Prevention Coalition.
      • Bardekjian Ambrosii, A. (2005). The Ecological Values and Services of Urban Forests Beyond Area-Sensitive Bird Breeding Habitat. Commissioned by Environment Canada, Wildlife Service.
      • Bardekjian Ambrosii, A. (2004). A Tree Inventory Management Plan for the Toronto District School Board. Major Paper for the Master of Forest Conservation Program. Commissioned by the Toronto District School Board.

    Poster Presentation

    Bardekjian, A., Classens, M., & Sandberg, L. A. (2012). The Alternative Campus Tour at York University: Innovative Approaches to Urban Ecology Education (poster). 10th Canadian Urban Forest Conference: Back to the Forest. October 4-6, London, ON.

    Professional Experience

    • Program Manager, Urban Forestry, Tree Canada (2014): Managing the national Urban Forestry portfolio to operationalize the Canadian Urban Forest Strategy (CUFS) by communicating with the Canadian Urban Forest Network (CUFN), government, businesses, private sector and academia in all areas of urban forest stewardship and protection; Coordinating the biennial Canadian Urban Forest Conference with the host city; Leading and coordinating the Research Working Group for the CUFS; Generating new knowledge in research, in collaboration with local, national and international partners, with particular attention to the areas of policy, monitoring, education, advocacy and development.
    • Associate and Project Manager, Tree Canada (2005-2013): Initiated the organization’s first international program, Building International Bridges for Forest Futures; a collaborative learning program with forest agencies in Armenia. Secured Funding: Awarded $20,000 from the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA); Co-author in designing a program plan to manage urban forests of military bases across Canada for the Department of National Defence; Principal Investigator and Author in developing the Compendium of Best Management Practices for Canadian Urban Forests in association with the Canadian Urban Forest Network.
    • Project Consultant, Trees Ontario (2006-2011): Initiated the Trees Ontario Heritage Tree Program partnership in association with the Ontario Urban Forest Council; Secured a Trillium Foundation Grant ($250,000.) for the provincial Capacity Building Program; Conducted various project research, resource development and program implementation. 
    • Writer, Technician and Consultant, Toronto Public Health (2005-2014): Toronto Cancer Prevention, Shade Policy Steering Committee: Developed a shade audit protocol to influence shade policy in the City of Toronto in accordance with the objectives of the Shade Policy Steering Committee; Directed "Partners In Action" a documentary showcasing the development of Toronto’s Shade Policy and Guidelines.
    • Associate Consultant, Urban Forest Innovations Inc. (2006-2008): Assisted in the development of various Strategic Urban Forest Management Plans (Town of Oakville, ON; City of Guelph, ON; and, City of St. John’s, NFLD); Prepared tree preservation reports.
    • Learning Grounds Project Coordinator, Evergreen (2005-2006): Principal Researcher for various projects; Designed and developed online workshops for school ground greening and shade provision for children; Implemented new software programs for internal communications; Developed inventory systems for Learning Resources and Image Library; Conducted prospect research for management; Conducted data collection and assessments for Associate performance.

    Services & Experience

    Services & Experience

    Academic Service

    • 2010-2011: PhD Representative, Faculty Appointments Advisory Committee, Environmental Studies, York University
    • 2006-present: Advisor and Past President, Alumni Association, Faculty of Forestry, University of Toronto 


    • 2009-2014: Elected Ontario Representative, Canadian Urban Forest National Steering Committee
    • 2006-2014: Advisor, Ontario Urban Forest Council
    • 2005-2014: Director, Toronto Cancer Prevention Coalition Shade Policy Steering Committee

    Teaching Experience

    • 2012-2013: Project Lead, Research and Development of Narratives, Student and University Engagement, The Alternative Campus Tour. Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University.
    • 2012: Course Director. ENVS 3740 Urban Ecology. Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University.
    • 2010-2011: Teaching Development Graduate Assistant, Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University.
    • 2008-2011: ENVS 1200 Taking Action: Engaging People and the Environment (L. Anders Sandberg). Teaching Assistant and Course Administrator, Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University.
    • 2006: Workshop Facilitator, Evergreen. Project Management Fundamentals; researched content, developed and co-hosted workshops for staff.
    • 2001-2002 English Language Teacher, Language Studies Canada. Teaching English as a Second Language
    • 1999-2001 Writing Tutor and Editorial Assistant. Counseling and Development, Concordia University, Montréal.


    • 2014: Canadian Dermatology Association Public Education Award for “Partners In Action: A Shade Policy for the City of Toronto” documentary film.

    • 2014: Commonwealth Woods Photography Competition; Exhibition; Lighthouse Gallery, Glasgow, Scotland.

    • 2014: International Society of Arboriculture Ontario Chapter Honourary Membership Award in recognition for personal efforts to promote and advance the ideas of arboriculture and urban forestry within Ontario.


    • 2013 TD Friends of the Environment Foundation, Grant for Urban Forests & Political Ecologies Conference ($15,000)

    • 2012 Graduate in Environmental Studies Student Association Community Excellence Prize ($400)
    • 2012 York University, Academic Innovation Fund, Group Grant for the Alternative Campus Tour Initiative ($20,000)
    • 2010 The Canadian Centre for German and European Studies, Ruhr Study Tour Program, Germany ($1,100)
    • 2010 The Kidney Foundation of Canada: Fundraising Team Captain, Give-the-Gift-of-Life Walk ($20,000)
    • 2008 Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) Grant for Tree Canada ($20,000)
    • 2008 Ontario Trillium Foundation Grant for Trees Ontario ($250,000)
    • 2007: University of Toronto, Faculty of Forestry Centennial Lecture Series, Priviledge of thanking Robert Bateman
    • 2007 On Camera Interview: “Places of Green” Canadian National Urban Forest Documentary, KING Motion Picture Corporation
    • 2005 Fred G. Jackson Award: Best research paper in Forest Conservation ($985)
    • 2004 University of Toronto, Graduate Bursary ($1,500)
    • 2004 University of Toronto, Grant ($1,650)
    • 1992-1997 Royal Canadian Legion Annual Writing Competition ($500)

    Conference & Presentations

    Conference & Presentations

    Conference Organization

    • 2013-2014: Co-Chair, Emerging Scholars’ Workshop Committee, Urban Natures Workshop: Engaging Social Science Perspectives in Urban Natural Resource Management - NYC Urban Field Station (Bayside, NY, June 2014)
    • 2011-2013: Co-Chair, Conference Organizing Committee - Urban Forests and Political Ecologies: Celebrating Transdisciplinarity, Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University and the Faculty of Forestry, University of Toronto (Toronto, April 2013): 

    Conference Presentations

    • Bardekjian, A. (2014). Shaping Diverse Identities in Urban Forestry: Influences of Metaphor, Language and Agency. International Conference on Urban Tree Diversity, June 16-18, Alnarp, Sweden.

    • Bardekjian, A. (2014). Learning from Limbwalkers: Political Ecology and Urban Forest Narratives in Southern Ontario. Urban Natures Workshop: Engaging Social Science Perspectives in Urban Natural Resource Management, June 5-8, Urban Field Station, Bayside, New York.

    • Bardekjian, A. (2013). Limbwalkers: Narratives of language, labour, agency and learning in urban forestry. CARE-FOR-US II/GreenMan Project Conference, Urban Forestry in Transition – Addressing the needs of changing societies, October 9-11, Tartu, Estonia.

    • Bardekjian, A. (2013). Uncommon Clear Cuts: Innovative Approaches to Teaching Urban Forestry. Urban Forests & Political Ecologies: Celebrating Transdisciplinarity Inaugural Conference, April 18-20, Toronto, ON.

    • Bardekjian, A. (2013). Limbwalkers: Arborist Voices in the Urban Forest. 64th Annual International Society of Arboriculture Conference: Climbing to the Top of Our Profession, February 13-15, Niagara Falls, ON.

    • Bardekjian, A. (2012). Of Arboretums and Arborscapes: Questioning Ecological and Social Identity within Language and Discourse. 11th Annual Art History Graduate Student Symposium, York University: New Growth: Dialogues on the Tree, March 31, Kleinburg, ON.

    • Bardekjian, A., Classens, M., & Sandberg, L. A. (2012). Reading the Urban Landscape: The Case of a Campus Tour at York University, Ontario, Canada. Association of Environmental Studies and Sciences, University of Vermont: Confronting Complexity; Urban Environmental Pedagogies: Bringing Theory to Practice, June 25, Burlington, VT.

    • Bardekjian, A. (2010). Planning Your Tutorials in Environmental Studies. TA Day, York University: What New Teaching Assistants Need To Get Started, August 26, Toronto, ON.

    • Bardekjian, A. (2008). Green Schoolgrounds and Children’s Health. 8th Canadian Urban Forest Conference: Healthy Trees, Healthy People, September 24, Strathcona, AB.

    • Bardekjian, A. (2007). Need For Green Oases In Asphalt-Dominated Schoolyards. Ontario Urban Forest Council Annual Conference: Climate Change and the Future of Ontario’s Forests, October 18, Toronto, ON.

    • Bardekjian, A. (2007). Sun Safe School Grounds, Greening the Toronto District School Board. Toronto Public Health: Shade for Good Health and a Green City, May 11, Toronto, ON. 

    • Bardekjian, A. (2006). How to Conduct a Shade Audit – the Protocol.  Toronto Cancer Prevention Coalition: Coalition Meeting, January 27, Toronto, ON.

    Guest Lectures


    • Bardekjian, A. (2009). Tree Canada in Armenia: Building International Bridges for Forest Futures. St. Sahag St. Mesrob Armenian School: Professional Lecture Series, March 14, Toronto, ON.
    • Bardekjian, A. (2008). Our Forests in Crisis, Armenia Tree Project. St. Sahag St. Mesrob Armenian School: Professional Lecture Series, January 19, Toronto, ON.

    Why FES?

    I chose to pursue my graduate studies at the Faculty of Environmental Studies at York University because it provides the wide range of scholarly expertise and the creative interdisciplinary space within which I want to conduct my doctoral research. I admire the challenging environment that this institution offers, its resources, and especially the caliber of faculty members who continually provide essential advisory guidance for my work.