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Martha  Radice  - Dalhousie University. Halifax , NS, CA

Martha Radice

Associate Professor, Department of Sociology and Social Anthropology | Dalhousie University

Halifax , NS, CANADA

An anthropologist who studies the social, spatial and cultural dynamics of cities.



Martha Radice is a social anthropologist whose work focuses on the social, spatial and cultural dynamics of cities. She has investigated social relations, especially interethnic relations, and the production of space in multiethnic commercial streets in Montréal. Her ongoing areas of interest are urban anthropology, public space, public art and public culture, multiculturalism and cosmopolitanism, and ethnographic methods. She is also experienced in applied research, having evaluated social inclusion in high schools and police-community relations in the UK and looked at public libraries as public space in Canada.

Dr. Radice worked with Solomon Nagler and Kim Morgan at NSCAD University on an interdisciplinary research-creation project, Tracing the City: Interventions of Art in Public Space, which explored how art can shape the urban public and, conversely, how the urban public can shape artistic production. She currently works with Jill Grant and Howard Ramos on the Halifax team of the Canada-wide Neighbourhood Change Research Project. During her sabbatical in winter 2016, she was Visiting Associate Professor in the Department of Geography and Anthropology at Louisiana State University, where she began new research into carnival culture in New Orleans.

Dr. Radice is editor-in-chief of the Journal for Undergraduate Ethnography and President-Elect of the Canadian Anthropology Society. She can provide copies of most of her publications by email.

Areas of Expertise (14)

Urban Studies

Études urbaines

Public Space

Espace public

Multiculturalism and cosmopolitanism

Multiculturalisme & cosmopolitisme

Public culture

Culture publique



Urban anthropology

Anthropologie urbaine

Public Art

Art public

Accomplishments (2)

President-Elect, Canadian Anthropology Society/Société canadienne d'anthropologie (professional)


Burgess Research Award (professional)


Teaching release, awarded on a competitive basis to provide extra time for research. Awarded Fall 2013, taken up Winter 2015.

Education (2)

Institut national de la recherche scientifique - Urbanisation Culture Société: PhD, Urban studies / Études urbaines 2010

Université Laval: M.A., Anthropologie / Anthropology 1999

Languages (2)

  • English
  • French

Media Appearances (1)

'Before I die' wall coming to Toronto this summer

Toronto Star. Reporter: Katie Daubs  print


Daubs, Katie (2012) '‘Before I die’ wall coming to Toronto this summer.' The Toronto Star, Toronto, 23 May 2012, p. GT1, GT11.

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Research Grants (3)

Perceptions of Change in Atlantic Cities

SSHRC Insight Grant $418000


2015-2020. Co-applicant, ‘Perceptions of Change in Atlantic Cities’, SSHRC Insight Grant, $418 000, PI: Howard Ramos, Dalhousie University. Other co-applicants: Lisa Kaider, Mark Stoddart, Memorial U Newfoundland; James McDonald, UNB. Collaborators: Jill Grant, Daniel Rainham, Yoko Yoshida, Dalhousie U; Rima Wilkes, UBC; Michael Haan, Luc Thériault, UNB.

Neighbourhood Change Research Partnership

SSHRC Partnership Grant $2500000


2012-2019. Co-applicant, ‘Neighbourhood Inequality, Diversity, and Change: Trends, Processes, Consequences, and Policy Options for Canada's Large Metropolitan Areas.’ Short name: ‘Neighbourhood Change Research Partnership.’ SSHRC Partnership Grant no. 895-2011-1004, $2.5 million. PI: J David Hulchanski, University of Toronto. Halifax team leader: Jill Grant, School of Planning, Dalhousie University. See for full list of co-applicants and community partners.

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Tracing the City: Interventions of Art in Public Space

SSHRC Research-Creation Grant in the Fine Arts $237411


2011-2015. Co-applicant, ‘Tracing the City: Interventions of Art in Public Space.’ SSHRC Research-Creation Grant in the Fine Arts no. 848-2010-0019, $237 411. PI: Solomon Nagler, NSCAD University; co-applicant : Kim Morgan, NSCAD University. Collaborators: Christopher Kaltenbach, NSCAD University; Ellen Moffat, independent artist; Erin Wunker, Dalhousie University.

Articles (6)

Putting the public in public art: An ethnographic approach to two temporary art installations

City & Society

forthcoming (accepted)

"Ici, c’est polyethnique": les cadrages de la diversité ethnique dans quatre quartiers de classes moyennes à Montréal

Lien social et politiques no. 76 (Les quartiers urbains en transformation)

forthcoming (accepted) co-authors: Leloup, Xavier, Annick Germain, and Martha Radice.

What Affects Perceptions of Neighbourhood Change?

The Canadian Geographer/Le Géographe canadien

forthcoming (accepted) co-authors: Gosse, Meghan, Howard Ramos, Martha Radice, Jill L Grant, and Paul Pritchard

Unpacking intercultural conviviality in multiethnic commercial streets

Journal of Intercultural Studies 37(5): 432-448 (special issue on Conviviality)


Conviviality has recently been taken up to capture everyday living-with-difference in multiethnic cities. Although it has usually been operationalised through an analysis of social interactions framed in neighbourhood or community settings, this article shifts the focus to more tightly delimited public places. Drawing on ethnographic fieldwork in four multiethnic neighbourhood commercial streets in Montréal, Quebec, it proposes a model that unpacks conviviality in place through four components: microplaces, codes of sociability, perceived intergroup relations, and place image (critical infrastructure). The article further argues that while conviviality not only pertains to relations across cultural difference, when it is intercultural, it overlaps conceptually with everyday cosmopolitanism – situated, emergent practices and discourses of openness to, and engagement with, cultural others. It uses the place-based model of conviviality to show how each of the commercial streets has its own distinct variety of everyday cosmopolitanism. Unpacking conviviality in place keeps us attuned to the many dimensions of social relations that make up contemporary cities.

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Micro-cosmopolitanisms at the urban scale

Identities: Global Studies in Culture and Power, special issue on ‘Mobility and Cosmopolitanism: Complicating the Interaction between Aspiration and Practice’, 22(5): 588-602


Scholars may no longer see cosmopolitanism as the preserve of the jet-setting elite, but they still tend to focus on international travel as the primary means of acquiring cosmopolitan competence. However, one should not confuse mindsets with mileage: if travel does not always generate cosmopolitanism, then neither is it a precondition for it, so stay-at-homes can become cosmopolitan too. This article draws on ethnographic fieldwork in multiethnic neighbourhoods of Montréal, Quebec, to show how cosmopolitanism can be produced and practised within the microcosm of the city. While international mobility is not necessarily part of these negotiations of difference, other kinds of spatial and social mobility are, especially intra-urban mobility and mobility of the imagination. Examining micro-cosmopolitanism at the urban scale, however, also reveals that practices of and aspirations towards cosmopolitanism do not necessarily coincide.

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La cohabitation interethnique dans quatre quartiers de classe moyenne à Montréal : deux petites leçons tirées des discours sur la diversité

Diversité urbaine, 14(1): 5-24


co-authors: Germain, Annick, Xavier Leloup and Martha Radice