(Previously) PLANDFORM – a collaborative design studio led by NM Lister in Toronto.


Across all our projects, collaboration is the heartbeat of our practice. Working at the intersection of landscape, ecology, urbanism and planning, we leverage a diversity of skills, practices, and methods through our extensive network of creative collaborators to meet the complex challenges of our time.


Prof. Nina-Marie Lister, MCIP, RPP, Hon. ASLA

Nina-Marie Lister is an ecological designer and registered professional planner working across applied research, teaching, and practice to connect people to nature in cities. As the principal of PLANDFORM, her transdisciplinary work advances designs for green infrastructure that protect biodiversity and support equitable, accessible and healthy community-based solutions to the polycrisis of climate change (global heating) and biodiversity loss (extinction). Through design activism, she advocates for the co-existence of wildlife and people in healthy, connected landscapes.

  • Nina-Marie Lister is a Professor of Urban Planning at Toronto Metropolitan University where she directs the Ecological Design Lab. A Senior Fellow of Massey College, she is a Visiting Professor of Landscape Architecture at Harvard University where she directs the WildWays Project. Lister was awarded the Margolese National Design for Living Prize for her work in ecological design and she holds honourary membership in the American Society of Landscape Architects. As co-editor of The Ecosystem Approach, Projective Ecologies, and author of more than 100 scholarly and professional contributions, Lister’s work connects people to nature in cities through green infrastructure design for climate resilience, biodiversity, and human wellbeing. She grounds this work in service with the Biophilic Cities Network, the Waterfront Toronto Design Review Panel and North America’s new Wildlife Crossing Fund. A recipient of the Canada Green Building Council’s excellence and leadership award, Lister was nominated among Planetizen’s Most Influential Urbanists.

    • 2023 Leadership Excellence Award (Public Education), Ontario Professional Planners, OPPI.
    • 2022 Honour Award, Ontario Association of Landscape Architects (OALA).
    • 2021 Winner of the Margolese Prize, Canada.
    • 2021 Senior Fellow, Massey College, Toronto.
    • 2021 Outstanding Contribution to Graduate Education Award, Yeates School of Graduate Studies, Toronto Metropolitan University.
    • 2019 American Society of Landscape Architects’ ASLA Best Book List of 2019, awarded for Design With Nature Now, edited by F. Steiner et. al. (N-M. Lister, contributing author).
    • 2018 Inspired Educator Award, Canada Green Building Council, Ontario Green Building Excellence & Leadership Awards.
    • 2017 Azure Design Award for Social Good, awarded for Extraction Empire, Canada’s entry to the Venice Architectural Biennale, awarded to Pierre Bélanger, curator (OPSYS) with N-M. Lister (Ecological Design Lab) and RVTR Architects.
    • 2016 American Society of Landscape Architects’ ASLA Best Book List of 2016, awarded for Nature & Cities, edited by F. Steiner et. al. (N-M. Lister, contributing author).
    • 2015 Honorary Membership in the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA).
    • 2015 Environmental Excellence Award, awarded by the US Federal Highway Administration to the ARC-Solutions Partnership (N-M Lister, Partner).
    • 2014 American Society of Landscape Architects’ ASLA Best Book List of 2014, awarded for Projective Ecologies, edited by C. Reed & N-M. Lister.
    • 2012 Boston Society of Architects (BSA) Citation for Design, awarded for Botanic Overlooks: Minneapolis Riverfront (team award) to Stoss Landscape Urbanism with N-M Lister.
    • 2010 Research Excellence Award (New Directions category) of the Ontario Professional Planners Institute, OPPI.
    • 2008 J.B. Jackson Book Prize in Landscape Studies, awarded to “Large Parks,” edited by J. Czerniak & G. Hargreaves (N-M. Lister, contributing author).
    • 2008 EDRA Places & Metropolis Planning Award, awarded for RIVER+CITY+LIFE, Master Plan for Toronto’s Lower Don Lands. Team award, in collaboration with Chris Reed/Stoss Landscape Urbanism (Boston), Brown + Storey Architects (Toronto) and ZAS Architects (Toronto).
    • 2004 Canada Mortgage & Housing Corporation (CMHC) Excellence in Education Award, for outstanding educational contribution to sustainable practices.
    • 2000 Canadian Society of Landscape Architects (CSLA), Citation for Design Excellence in Landscape Architecture, awarded for Humberwood Centre, Etobicoke (team award) to ZAS Architects and Hough Woodland Naylor + Dance Ltd. with N-M. Lister.
    • 2000 Council of Educational Facility Planners International (CEFPI), International Design Award of Distinction, awarded for the Toronto Island Public / Nature School design (team award) to ZAS Architects with N-M. Lister.



Lister works within landscapes and communities for climate resilience and biodiversity recovery. Her collaborations through design and across disciplines help to connect people to nature in cities and beyond.

Lister provides strategic advice to juries, competitions, project teams, and plans with both a critical eye and constructive support. Together with a network of diverse collaborators, she brings novel methods, diverse voices, and bold ideas to help unlock creative thinking across disciplines and professions, navigating evidence, images and language that engage communities, moving towards positive change.

CoLab Montana FRP 2018


Lister is an experienced and compelling public speaker, having given more than 50 keynotes and distinguished public lectures across the world in the last 6 years. From international conferences to small symposia and grassroots organizations, Lister’s talks are known to motivate, activate and inspire audiences across cultures and places, from dozens to hundreds, online and in-person.

  • Norman Foster Foundation: Sustainability Workshop,
    Madrid, 2023

    Green Cities Congress: Landscape-based Urbanism,
    Netherlands, 2023

    P22 – The Legacy of a Mountain Lion,
    Los Angeles, 2023

    United Nations Biodiversity Conference of the Parties (COP15),
    Montreal, 2022

    Asia Parks / IUCN Congress,
    Singapore, 2022

    Biophilic Leadership Summit,
    Atlanta, GA (Virtual), 2021

    Centre for the Future of Places: ATHENA TALKS,
    Stockholm, 2018

    Landscape Architecture Foundation: Landscape Summit,
    Philadelphia, 2016

    International Federation of Landscape Architecture & URBIO Conference,
    Panama, 2016



Compelling writing is critical to catalyzing and advancing design excellence. Lister’s published works weave together landscape, ecology and design for a better world. Her publication record is well-established, with 3 edited books and over 100 publications including scholarly articles, essays, professional papers, technical reports, creative exhibitions and conference papers.

    • Lister, N-M. (2023). Leading with Landscape: Investing in Green Infrastructure for Resilience. Chapter 13 in: Haas, T. (ed). Women Reclaiming the City: International Research on Urbanism, Architecture and Planning (The Athena Lecture Series* at KTH Stockholmf. [*reprint]
    • Lister, N-M. (2022). Generative Lineages: A Conversation with Nina-Marie Lister. Part 2, Chapter 9 in: Monacella, R. and Keane, B. Designing Landscape Architectural Education: Studio Ecologies for Unpredictable Futures. New York: Routledge.
    • McCartney, S., Lister, N-M. and Herskovits, J. (2022). Codesign, Collaboration and Systems Change: Reflections on Innovative Cross-Cultural and Interdisciplinary Practice Centred on Action in Landscapes of Conflict. In McCartney, S., Solano, S., Vangjeli, S. and Zander, H. (Eds) A Landscape Approach: From Local Communities to Territorial Systems. pp 249-262. ORO Editions.
    • *Luka, N., Aird, B. and Lister, N-M. (2022). Complimenting Citizen Engagement with Innovative Forms of Professional Coproduction: A Case for Transdisciplinary Charettes. Chapter 7 in Kong, H. and T. Monforte (Eds.) Sustainability, Citizen Participation, and City Governance: Multidisciplinary Perspectives. University of Toronto Press, pp 163-193.
    • *Boudreau, S., Gransaull, G., Lister, N-M, and Pritchard, G. (2022). Preparing students for interdisciplinary work: green infrastructure curricula at Ryerson University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Chapter 10 in Vacca, J. R. (ed) Smart Cities Policies and Financing. Elsevier, pp 135-153.
    • Lister, N-M. (2021) Feeling the Heat: Transforming Cities for Healthy Climate Resilience. In C. Reed & M. Bellame (eds) Mis-En-Scène: The Lives and Afterlives of Urban Places. Los Angeles, CA: ORO Editions.
    • Reed, C., & Lister, N-M. eds. (2020) Projective Ecologies 2nd ed. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University GSD and New York: ACTAR. 384.
    • *Lister, N-M. (2019). “Design on the Edge: A Dance Between Emergence and Extinction”. Chapter 21 in: F. Steiner, R. Weller & B. Fleming (eds) Design with Nature Now. Lincoln Press, pp 272-280. Named to the American Society of Landscape Architect’s List of Best Books of 2019.
    • *Lister, N-M. (2016). “Resilience Beyond Rhetoric in Urban Landscape Planning and Design”. Chapter 13 in: F. Steiner, G. Thompson, & A. Carbonell (eds) Nature and Cities: The Ecological Imperative in Urban Planning and Design. Lincoln Land Institute, pp 296-319. Named to the American Society of Landscape Architect’s List of Best Books in 2016.
    • Reed, C., & Lister, N-M. eds. (2014) Projective Ecologies. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University GSD and New York: ACTAR. 380p. Named to the American Society of Landscape Architect’s List of Best Books of 2014.
    • *Lister, N-M. (2010). “Insurgent Ecologies: (Re) Claiming Ground in Landscape and Urbanism” In: G. Doherty & M. Mostafavi (eds.), Ecological Urbanism. Basel, Switzerland: Lars Müller Publishers, pp 535-547.
    • *Waltner-Toews, D., Kay, J. J., & Lister, N-M. (2008) The Ecosystem Approach: Complexity, Uncertainty, and Managing for Sustainability. New York, NY: Columbia University Press. 383p.
    • *Lister, N-M. (2007). “Sustainable Large Parks: Ecological design or designer ecology?” In: J. Czerniak & G. Hargreaves (eds.) Large Parks. Princeton NJ: Princeton Architectural Press, pp 31-51. Winner of the J.B. Jackson Book Prize 2008. Awarded annually by the Foundation for Landscape Studies for books that have made significant contributions to the understanding of landscape.

    For a list of full publications, including scientific research papers and academic articles, visit: https://ecologicaldesignlab.ca/publications

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