The social sciences were my first academic interest, and I keep returning to them in a variety of ways. I've been a political junkie since I was a teenager, when I wrote for a now-defunct community newspaper called Between the Lines, and my bedroom wall was covered in news articles I'd clipped and pasted about the 1989 NDP leadership convention. I came to McGill for my undergrad degree thinking I might major in political science, but then I wound up falling in love with the city of Montréal, developing a newfound love of cities and the way they work, so instead I went into urban studies (via geography and sociology).
As I moved on in that degree, I came to get more and more interested in poorer ("developing") countries: that was both where a concerned person could do the most good in general, and where skills in urban studies would be most needed. I began taking more and more courses in international development, then taking a job and a master's degree in the field. Through both degrees I learned a lot about the characteristic tools and methods of the social sciences. In my PhD I moved on to more humanistic study in philosophy and religious studies, but social science continued to be important to me both during and after the degree, in professional and scholarly ways.