Dr Thomas Sigler
Dr Thomas Sigler


Lecturer in Human Geography


Room: 35 - 509
Phone: 336-53804
Email: t.sigler@uq.edu.au


PhD Geography, The Pennsylvania State University
MSc Geography, The Pennsylvania State University
BA Geography & International Relations, The University of Southern California

Professional Associations

  • Urban Affairs Association
  • Institute of Australian Geographers
  • Association of American Geographers


Dr Thomas Sigler joined GPEM in 2012, relocating from his home in the US.  Dr Sigler has worked abroad in several different contexts.  In 2009, he worked with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and partner organizations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo to formulate a conservation plan in the eastern part of the country.  In 2007 and 2008, he worked in Honduras with an organization called Global Brigades creating programming for undergraduate students traveling to Central America to deliver sustainable enterprise workshops. 

Research Interest

For the past few years, Dr Sigler's research has focused on understanding the drivers behind the complex process commonly referred to as urban growth.  Through his dissertation research in Panama, he has sought to comprehend the interface between private developers, institutional actors, and the state.  The global urban system is constantly being reordered by globalization, and he argues that contemporary political and economic frameworks have articulated power toward particular cities in unique and novel ways.  Dr Sigler's work has focused on documenting a subset of these cities that he calls 'relational' cities; these are urban agglomerations that hold strategic intermediary roles in an increasingly connected world. Dr Sigler's key areas of interest are:
  • Network-Based Approaches to Understanding Global City Formation
  • Urban Morphology in the Global South
  • Historical Urban Development

Research Students

Principal supervison of PhD students:

Associate supervision of PhD students:

Selected Publications

Sigler, TJ (Forthcoming).  Monaco with Bananas, a Tropical Manhattan, or a Singapore for Central America:  Explaining Rapid Urban Growth in Panama City, Panama.  Singapore Journal of Tropical Geography

Sigler, TJ (Forthcoming).  Panama as Palimpsest:  The Reformulation of the Transit Corridor in a Global Economy.  International Journal of Urban and Regional Research—IJURR.

Sigler, TJ (2014).  Panama’s Special Economic Zones:  Balancing Growth and Development in a National Context. Bulletin of Latin American Research 33(1): 1-15. 

Sigler, TJ (2013).  Corporate clustering in Australian cities:  An analysis of the geographic distribution of ASX-listed headquarters.  In K Ruming, B Randolph, and N Gurran (eds.) State of Australian Cities Conference 2013: Refereed Proceedings

Sigler, TJ (2013).  Relational Cities:  Doha, Panama City, and Dubai as 21st Century Entrepôts. Urban Geography 34(5):  612-633. 

Sigler, TJ and R Albandoz (2013). Beyond Representation:  Film as a Pedagogical Tool in Urban GeographyJournal of Geography. 

Sigler, TJ and M Balaji (2013).  Regional Place Representation in Hip-Hop Music Communication, Culture, and Critique 6(2):  336-352.

Sigler, TJ (2009). Mixed-Use Megaprojects in the Global Context: Lessons from Las VegasHuman Geography 2(2): 77-82.  


What does your skyline say about your city?  The Atlantic Cities, 23 August 2012.
Is There Such as Thing as ‘Rural’ Gentrification?. Planetizen, 21 February 2012. 
A Fight to Save One of Latin America’s Oldest NeighborhoodsThe Atlantic Cities, 15 November 2011. 
In Defense of Publicly Owned MetrosThe Atlantic Cities, 2 November 2011. 
Metro Planning:  A Snapshot of GIS Applications in PanamaPlanning and Technology Today,11 August 2011.  


Last updated: Oct 2, 2014

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