Michael Dear: A scholar, a pragmatist and a change maker
McMaster University Daily News
June 12, 2019
Photo courtesy Tony Tieu & McMaster University
In June 2019, CED Emeritus Professor Michael Dear was awarded the degree of Doctor of Laws honoris causaby McMaster University in Ontario, Canada. Dr. Dear took up his first academic appointment at McMaster in 1974, rising to the rank of professor before moving to California. The degree citation welcomed him back to Canada, “this time not to launch his career, but to celebrate its immense impact and influence … most notably to geography and [urban] planning in the public interest.”
Dr. Dear’s most recent work focuses on the US-Mexico border. His award-winning book, Why Walls Won’t Work, was first published in 2013 by Oxford University Press. His research was instrumental in a decision by Europe’s largest cement manufacturer to refuse supplying any cement for the construction of a wall between the US and Mexico. He also contributed to an amicus curiaebrief brought before the US Supreme Court by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of a Mexican mother whose teenage son was shot to death by a US Border Patrol agent.