Welcome to my website! I’m a lifelong learner, open-minded and passionate about creating regenerative and sustainable societies that are (again) one with Earth!
My area of research and practice is the interdisciplinary field of sustainable community development (SCD) with focus on sustainability in urban areas. Specifically, I look at SCD through the conceptual lens of the emerging concept of regenerative and holistic urban productivity. The goal is to shift local development from a negative logic (reducing impact) to a positive one: regenerating community resources in an equitable and just manner to achieve systemic, transformative change. To that end, I developed an integrated framework to help communities achieve their sustainability goals and evaluate their progress. In June 2021 I graduated with my PhD from the School of Resource and Environmental Management, Simon Fraser University, British Columbia, Canada, after successfully defending my thesis in April 2021.
An important focus of mine is sustainability education and particularly embedding sustainability in higher, post-secondary education through curriculum updates, instructional design for sustainability, and experiential learning. From 2016 to 2018 I was a sessional instructor with SFU’s Sustainable Development Program and from 2014 to 2020 I was a course supervisor or a teaching assistant in various courses of this program. As SFU Sustainability‘s Manager Student Learning and Leadership, I co-facilitated the co-curricular program Climate Action Student Collaborative and am currently co-designing a sustainability literacy program for the university community. My pedagogical methods are informed by values such as equity, responsibility, respect, trust, and partnership; inspired by Indigenous worldviews, the Truth and Reconciliation Committee’s Calls to Action, and the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People; and guided by the Universal Design for Learning framework.
I also have experience in applied social research as well as community partnerships for sustainability and climate action, including developing and managing community-engaged projects, for instance sustainability awareness campaigns, environmental education programs, wildlife protection projects, CSR and cause-related fundraising events, and research studies on issues such as climate change and sustainable communities.
Through my studies and work I became familiar with the working processes of the European Union and the EU funding instruments for sustainability projects of national, regional and local scale. As an environmental legal consultant and fundraiser for the environmental sector from 2007 to 2014, I actively participated in the preparation of funding proposals for submission to the EU and other organisations, foundations and institutions. I have also volunteered in various activities and events with Greek environmental and humanitarian NGOs as well as with organisations in Vancouver, Canada, including Simon Fraser University. Lastly, I have collaborated with Sympraxis Team on various sustainability-related projects.
I obtained my MA in Environmental Law and two diplomas in Environmental Pollution and in European Studies/Law from the University of Strasbourg, France, and my BA in International Relations and European Studies from Panteion University of Political Science in Athens, Greece. My book on the EU law on environmental impact (2005) may be consulted in several prestigious libraries around Europe (Panteion University in Athens, Université de Strasbourg, European Court of Justice (entry 1200), Peace Palace Library in The Hague) and may also be bought at amazon.fr.
I grew up on the small island of Kea in Greece; there, my grandpa taught me to cut glass panels for doors and windows while my grandma taught me crochet and knitting. In my previous life I enjoyed volunteering for Blue Flag beach inspections around Greece and in my current life I enjoy various arts and crafts and participating in regalia assistance for SFU convocations.
Scholarly publications (OA = Open Access):
- Vigier, M., Ouellet-Plamondon, C. M., Spiliotopoulou, M., Moore, J., & Rees, W. E. (2022) To What Extent is Sustainability Addressed at Urban Scale and How Aligned is it with Earth’s Carrying Capacity?. Pre-print Available at SSRN 4075713.
- Spiliotopoulou, M., & Roseland, M. (2022). Sustainability planning, implementation, and assessment in cities: how can productivity enhance these processes?. Discover Sustainability, 3(1), 1-19. OA
- Spiliotopoulou, M., & Roseland, M. (2021). Urban sustainability via urban productivity? A conceptual review and framework proposal. Local Environment, 1–20. https://doi.org/10.1080/13549839.2021.2005008 OA
- Spiliotopoulou, M., & Roseland, M. (2021). Making the SDGs Relevant for Cities: Using the Community Capital Tool in British Columbia. In King, L. O., & Iyer, S. (Eds), Promoting the Sustainable Development Goals in North American Cities: Case Studies and Best Practices in the Science of Sustainability Indicators, Springer.
- Spiliotopoulou, M., & Roseland, M. (2021). Achieving community happiness and well-being through community productivity. In Cloutier, S. (Ed), Linking Sustainability and Happiness: Theoretical and Applied Perspectives, Springer Nature.
- Spiliotopoulou, M., & Roseland, M. (2020). Urban Sustainability: From Theory Influences to Practical Agendas. Sustainability, 12(18), 7245. OA
- Spiliotopoulou, M., & Roseland, M. (2020). Theories and concepts influencing sustainable community development: introducing the concept of community productivity. In Phillips, R. (Ed), The Research Handbook on Community Development, Edward Elgar Publishing. OA
- Roseland, M., & Spiliotopoulou, M. (2018). Sustainability in North America: the Canadian experience. In Brinkmann, R., & Garren, S. (Eds), The Palgrave Handbook of Sustainability: Case studies and practical solutions (pages 635-652). Cham, Switzerland: Palgrave Macmillan.
- Roseland, M., & Spiliotopoulou, M. (2017). Sustainable Community Planning and Development. In Abraham, M. (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Sustainable Technologies. Amsterdam, Oxford, Cambridge MA: Elsevier.
- Roseland, M., & Spiliotopoulou, M. (2016). Converging urban agendas: Toward healthy and sustainable communities. Social Sciences, 5(3), 28.
- Spiliotopoulou, M. (2005). Le droit communautaire de l’évaluation des incidences sur l’environnement: Le cas français. Athènes-Bruxelles: Sakkoulas-Bruylant.
In this page, you will find some projects and milestones in my career so far.
Please contact me for collaborations and to request my full CV.
Interested in more details about my publications, presentations, awards, and other information? Click here!