Assistant Professor - Professeur adjoint
Faculty of Law -- Faculté de droit
McGill University -- Université McGill
3674 Peel Street
Canada H3A 1W9
(514) 398-6628 (office)
University of Toronto (1995-1996, 1999-2004)
Ph.D. in Philosophy, 2004
Dissertation: “Sovereignty’s Promise: The State as Fiduciary”
Committee: David Dyzenhaus (supervisor), Arthur Ripstein, Lorne Sossin
University of Toronto (1994-1996, 1999-2000)
Juris Doctor, 2000 (with honours)
University of Manitoba (1991-1993)
Master of Arts (with distinction)
Thesis: “Anarchal Egalitarianism: Happiness, Equality and a Denial of Self-Ownership”
Committee: Robert Shaver (supervisor), Joyce Jenkins, Ken McVicor
University of Manitoba (1990-1991)
Pre-Master of Arts, 1991
University of Manitoba (1985-1987, 1989-1990)
Bachelor of Arts (Dean’s Honour List)
TEACHING AND OTHER ACADEMIC EXPERIENCE
Inter-American Human Rights System (upper year seminar, in Spanish): Winter, 2008; Fall, 2008
Immigration and Refugee Law (upper year lecture class): Winter, 2007; Fall, 2007; Winter, 2009
Advanced Jurisprudence (upper year seminar): Winter, 2007
Judicial Review of Administrative Action (upper year lecture class): Winter, 2006; Fall, 2006; Fall, 2007; Fall,
Aboriginal Peoples and the Law (upper year seminar): Fall, 2005; Fall, 2006
Jurisprudence (upper year lecture class): Winter, 2006
McGill University, Faculty of Law: Judicial Review of Administrative Action (upper year lecture class): Winter
McGill University, Faculty of Law: Aboriginal Peoples and the Law (upper year seminar): Winter 2005
McGill University, Faculty of Law: Jurisprudence (upper year seminar): Winter 2004
Queen’s University, Faculty of Law: Aboriginal Law (upper year seminar): Winter 2004
University of Toronto, Department of Philosophy: Law and Morality (second year undergraduate course;
+130 students): Fall 2002
University of Toronto, Department of Philosophy: Issues in the Philosophy of Law (third year undergraduate
course; 60 students): Winter 2001
University of Toronto, Department of Philosophy: Law and Morality (second year undergraduate course; 40
students): Spring 2000
University of Manitoba, Department of Philosophy: Ethics and Society (second year undergraduate course; 35
students): Summer 1993, 1994, 1995
University of Manitoba, Department of Philosophy: Critical Thinking (first year undergraduate course; 70
students): Fall 1991
University Administration and Other Academic Duties
McGill University Senator on behalf of the Faculty of Law (2008 – 2011)
Chair of Law Faculty’s Latin American Working Group (2006-present)
Organized six-part Latin American Law Conference Series (Winter, 2008)
Chair of Law Faculty’s Equity Committee (2006-2007)
Member of Law Faculty’s Equity Committee (2007-2008)
Co-organized, with Richard Janda, the Faculty’s Legal Workshop series, and helped develop a web-site to
support this series (2005-2007)
Member of the McGill Human Rights and Legal Pluralism Centre’s Research Planning Group (2006-present)
Member of Law Faculty’s Curriculum Committee (2005-2006; 2007-2008)
With Greg Tardi, review of the Faculty’s public law offerings and development of a spreadsheet indicating the
relationship between those offerings and the Faculty’s Overall Academic Priorities (2005-2006)
Member of Organizing Committee on behalf of the Faculty for the “Law and Parliament Conference 2006”
McGill University, Faculty of Law: ongoing supervision of upper year student research papers, LLM and
Moot Team Coaching and Supervision
McGill University, Faculty of Law: Laskin Moot, 2005, 2006, 2007 (with Stephen Drymer)
2007 Results: Second Place Overall, Fourth Place Pleader
2006 Results: First Place Appellant Pleaders, Second Place Overall, Second Place Pleader, Third Place
Pleader, Second Place Pair
2005 Results: First Place Overall Team (the Grand Prize); First Place Factums; First Place
Queen’s University, Faculty of Law: Aboriginal Moot (Kawaskimhon), 2003-2004
Academic Peer Review
Ottawa Law Review, 2004 – present
McGill Law Journal, 2004 – present
Alberta Law Review, 2006 – present
Journal of International Law and International Relations, 2007 – present
International Journal of Sustainable Development Law and Policy, 2007 - present
Canadian Legal Education Annual Review, 2007 - present
Reading Group Organization
McGill University, Faculty of Law: Initiation of multi-disciplinary Governance Theory Reading Group, 2004 -
Peer reviewed journal articles
“Rethinking the Relationship between International and Domestic Law” (with Armand de Mestral) (2009)
53(4) McGill Law Journal (forthcoming).
“Is the Rule of Law Really Indifferent to Human Rights?” (2008) 27(6) Law and Philosophy: 533 – 581.
(Ashgate Publishing has asked that the article be developed into a book; on four “Top Ten” ejournal lists
“Parliamentary Privilege and the Rule of Law” (2007) 20(2) Canadian Journal of Administrative Law and
Practice 117-140. (On one “Top Ten” ejournal list on SSRN.)
“Fashioning Legal Authority from Power: The Crown-Native Fiduciary Relationship,” (2006) 4 New
Zealand Journal of Public and International Law: 91–116.
“The Fiduciary Nature of State Legal Authority” (2005) 31 Queen’s Law Journal: 259 – 310.
“Suresh and Canada’s Legal Obligations regarding Torture,” (2001) 12 National Journal of Constitutional
“Rethinking the Process/Substance Distinction: Baker v. Canada,” (with David Dyzenhaus) (2001) 51
University of Toronto Law Journal: 193-242.
(Cited by the Ontario Court of Appeal in the minority rights case Lalonde v. Ontario (Commission de restructuration
des services de santé), (2001), 56 O.R. (3d) 505 (O.C.A.) at para. 177.)
“Why self-ownership is prescriptively impotent,” (1998) 32 Journal of Value Inquiry: 489-506.
Books, book chapters, non-refereed articles
“A Fiduciary Theory of Jus Cogens” (with Evan J. Criddle) (2009) 34 Yale Journal of International Law
“The Charter and Administrative Law: Cross-Fertilisation in Public Law” in Administrative Law in Context, L.
Sossin & C. Flood eds. (Toronto: Emond Montgomery, 2008): 169 – 195.
“Parliamentary Privilege, the Charter and the Rule of Law after the Vaid Case” (2007) 20(3) Canadian
Parliamentary Review: 27-35.
“Implementation and Reception: The Congeniality of Canada’s Legal Order to International Law” (with
Armand de Mestral) in The Globalized Rule of Law: Relationships between International and Domestic Law,
Oonagh Fitzgerald, et. al. eds. (Toronto: Irwin Law, 2006): 31 - 83.
“The Internal Morality of Administration: The Form and Structure of Reasonableness,” in The Unity of
Public Law, David Dyzenhaus ed., (Oxford: Hart Publishing, 2004): 143-171.
“Constitutional Protection of Indigenous Rights in Canada: Reconciling State Sovereignty with the Pre-
existence of Distinctive Aboriginal Societies,” in Administración de Justicia y Pueblos Indígenas en la
Perspectiva del Derecho Intercultural, Adriana Lander Osío ed., (Supreme Court of Justice of Venezuela
Press, 2003): 73-103.
Marc Ribeiro, Limiting Arbitrary Power: The Vagueness Doctrine in Canadian Constitutional Law, Queen’s
Law Journal (2005) 30 Queen’s Law Journal: 923 – 37.
Monographs, technical reports and white papers
Programa Andino de Derechos Humanos y Democracia: Final Evaluation Report (with Christiane Tuijtelaars and
Hilde Hey) (Utrecht, the Netherlands: Human European Consultancy, 2006), pp. 176.
Final Editor: “Raquel Yrigoyen Fajardo, Kong Rady, Phan Sin. Pathways to Justice: Access to Justice with a
focus on the Poor, Women and Indigenous Peoples (Phnom Phen, Cambodia: UNDP, 2005),” pp. 226.
“Thematic Impact Assessment of the USAID/Guatemala Peace Program” (with Michael Brown, John
Tyynela, and Roderick Brett). Burlington, Vermont: Associates in Rural Development, 2004 (104 pp.).
“Peacebuilding and Reconstruction Program Initiative: External Evaluation Report” (with Rex Brynen,
Stephen Browne). Ottawa: International Development Research Centre, 2003 (74 pp.).
“Proyecto Justicia y Multiculturalidad: Informe del Componente Nacional” (with Myra Muralles). Guatemala City,
Guatemala: UN Mission for the Verification of Human Rights in Guatemala, 1999.
“Proyecto Administración de Justicia y Pluralismo Lingüistico: Informe de la Base de Datos sobre Multilingüismo.”
Quetzaltenango, Guatemala: UN Mission for the Verification of Human Rights in Guatemala, 1997.
SCHOLARSHIPS, DISTINCTIONS AND AWARDS
Academic Scholarships and Awards:
Social Science and Humanities Research Post-doctoral Fellowship, 2003-2005
University of Toronto Post-doctoral Fellowship, 2003-2004
Gordon Cheesbrough Graduate Fellowship in Philosophy, 2002, 2003
Norman Levy Prize in Jurisprudence, (University of Toronto, Faculty of Law, best essay in Jurisprudence),
The Law Society of Upper Canada’s Award for Academic Excellence, 2000
Social Science and Humanities Research Council Doctoral Fellowship, 1999-2003
Ontario Graduate Studies Scholarship, 1997-1998 (declined)
University of Toronto Open Scholarship, 1996-1997 (declined)
University of Toronto International Human Rights Fellowship, 1996
Ontario Graduate Studies Scholarship, 1995-1996
Duff Roblin Scholarship, (University of Manitoba, Faculty of Graduate Studies)1992-1993
University of Manitoba Graduate Studies Scholarship, 1991-1992
Award for Human Rights:
YMCA of Canada Peace Medal, 1989. Awarded annually by the YMCA to the Canadian deemed to have
made the most outstanding contribution to world peace.
DEMOCRATIC GOVERNANCE AND INSTITUTIONAL DESIGN EXPERIENCE
Consortium on Democratic Constitutionalism (Demcon), 2004 – present.
Member. Demcon is an interdisciplinary group of legal, political and social theorists, created to promote
scholarly exchange and collaboration on questions of constitutional theory, design and practice. Website:
International Institute on Law and Society (IILS), 2001 – 2007.
Director. The IILS is an international and multidisciplinary group that conducts research and activities
related to human rights, justice reform, democratic governance, legal pluralism and Aboriginal rights. Its main
focus is the promotion and development of the “International Exchange Program in Multiculturalism,
Indigenous Rights and Legal Pluralism,” a program in which 35 universities and the United Nations
participate. Website: www.derechoysociedad.org
Associates in Rural Development, Inc. (ARD), Burlington, Vermont, July 2006.
Consultant. Development of ARD’s proposal to USAID for a three-year $9,000,000 decentralisation and
citizen participation programme in Bolivia.
Agriconsulting/European Union, May, 2006.
Team Leader. Coordinated a group tasked with reviewing and evaluating proposals submitted to the
European Union’s European Initiative on Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR). The EIDHR’s call for
proposals seeks to strengthen the rule of law at the international level through support to various international
criminal courts and tribunals.
Human European Consultancy/European Union, December, 2005.
Consultant. Evaluation of the European Union’s Programa Andino, a $15,000,000 four-year human rights and
justice sector program carried out in the Andean countries of Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and
Bolivia. The program consisted in a Regional Program on Justice of the Peace, a Regional Program on
Human Rights Education, as well as stand-alone human rights projects in each of the program countries.
ARD, Burlington, Vermont, August 2004.
Consultant. Drafting of ARD’s proposal to USAID to implement a five-year $28,500,000 anti-corruption
and transparency program in Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Panama. Design of ARD’s strategic
approach and governance programs that aim to achieve the following results: (i) more transparent systems for
management of public resources by national governments, (ii) more opportunities for citizen participation in
national government decision-making, and (iii) greater accountability of elected and appointed officials.
ARD, Burlington, Vermont, July 2004.
Consultant. Drafting of ARD’s proposal to USAID to carry out a five-year $4,600,000 local governance
program in Guatemala. Design of ARD’s overall strategy, its approach for selecting target municipalities for
program intervention, its integrated monitoring and evaluation methodology, programs that seek increased
devolution of responsibilities and resources to the local level, and programs that provide for greater
opportunities for citizen participation in local governance.
USAID, Guatemala City, Guatemala, May 2004.
Consultant. Evaluation of USAID/Guatemala’s participation in justice sector reforms following the 1996
Peace Accords. Evaluation included review of USAID-supported reforms in the judicial branch, the public
prosecutor’s office, the public defender and the police. The evaluation also encompassed USAID initiatives in
legal education, community-focused Justice Centers, and Alternative Dispute Resolution.
International Development Research Centre, Ottawa, Canada, 2003.
Consultant. Evaluation of IDRC’s Peacebuilding and Reconstruction Programme Initiative, a division of
IDRC that focuses on war-torn and post-conflict societies, with particular emphasis on issues related to
democratization, human security and the political economy of peacebuilding.
World Bank/Supreme Court and National Assembly of Venezuela, 2002.
Consultant. Legal consultation for National Assembly of Venezuela on proposed legislation concerning
Indigenous peoples and their right to be consulted prior to the enactment of legislation that affects their
Immigration and Refugee Board, Toronto, Canada, 2000-2003.
Expert Witness. Testified on human rights and international law in cases involving Latin American refugees
seeking asylum in Canada.
United Nations Verification Mission in Guatemala (MINUGUA) / United Nations Office for Project
Services (UNOPS), Guatemala City, Guatemala, 1998 -- 1999.
National Research Coordinator. Coordinated a multi-disciplinary study on access to justice for indigenous
persons. Responsibilities included coordination of research teams in 17 UN offices, as well as the drafting of
guidelines to verify government compliance with Peace Accord commitments concerning Indigenous rights
and education reform.
MINUGUA - Regional Office, Quetzaltenango, Guatemala, 1996-1998.
Human Rights Observer. Oversaw government and ex-insurgent compliance with 1996 Peace Accords
related to human rights and labour rights in the south west region of Guatemala.
ARD, Guatemala and El Salvador. 1998-1999.
Consultant. Drafted proposals and workplans for USAID and the International Development Bank initiatives
in the areas of justice reform and citizen participation in legislative processes.
Centre of Spanish Speaking Peoples, Toronto, Canada, 1994-1995.
Pro-bono legal advisor. Advocacy on behalf of Hispanic immigrants.
University of Toronto, Toronto, Canada, 1995.
Research Assistant. Researcher for access to justice project.
Legal Relief, Lutheran Church of El Salvador, Panchimilama, El Salvador, 1988-1989.
Legal Advocate. Advocacy for resettled refugees and torture victims during El Salvador’s civil war under the
auspices of Nobel Peace Prize Nominee Medardo Gomez.
Anglican Church of Canada’s Committee for Latin America, Canada, 1989-1992.
Member. Member of a five person committee that distributed more than $1,200,000 annually to
development projects focused on human rights in Latin America. Representative in Central America between
1991 and 1992.
Canadian Foundation to Aid El Salvador, 1989.
Spokesperson. Representative and spokesperson during a fourteen-city lecture and fund-raising tour across
RECENT CONFERENCE PRESENTATIONS
“Judicial Review and Politics.” September 19, 2008. Roundtable entitled “Courting Democracy”. University
of Western Ontario, Department of Philosophy. London, Ontario.
“Procedural Fairness – A Pandora’s Box of Legality.” June 4, 2008. Roundtable on Dunsmuir v. New
Brunswick. University of Toronto, Faculty of Law. Toronto.
“The State as Guarantor of Social and Economic Rights: Lessons from the Inter-American Court of Human
Rights." May 29, 2008. Law and Society Conference. Montreal.
“The Duty to Obey the Law.” March 31, 2008. McGill Political Theory Workshop. McGill University,
“A Fiduciary Theory of the Duty to Obey the Law.” January 18, 2008. Young Scholars Conference. McGill
University, Faculty of Law, Montreal.
“The Language of Cosmopolitan Law.” September 27, 2007. Legal Education in a Cosmopolitan World.
McGill University, Faculty of Law, Montreal.
“Derechos Indígenas en Canadá y las Américas.” June 15, 2007. Encuentro Canadá –Venezuela sobre
Derechos Indígenas. Universidad Central de Venezuela, Caracas.
“The Charter and Administrative Law.” June 12, 2007. Administrative Law in Context Symposium. Faculty
of law, University of Toronto.
“The Murky Relationship between the Charter and Administrative Law.” January 26, 2007. “Young Scholars
Conference.” Faculty of Law, McGill University.
“Parliamentary Privilege and the Rule of Law.” November 3, 2006. “Law and Parliament Conference:
Accountability.” House of Parliament, Ottawa.
“Review of Administrative Decisions under the Charter.” September 15, 2006. University of Toronto, Faculty
“Judicial Independence.” April 18 and 20, 2006. “Judicial Independence in Canada and Venezuela
Compared.” Universidad de los Andes and Universidad Metropolitana, of Mérida and Caracas respectively.
“Treaties and the Crown-Native Fiduciary Relationship.” April 6, 2006. “Seminar on Aboriginal Issues.”
Centre for Quebec Studies, McGill University.
“Fashioning Legal Authority from Power.” November 25, 2005. Centre of Public Law Symposium: “The
Executive.” University of Wellington, New Zealand
Commentary on the forthcoming David Dyzenhaus, The Constitution of Law (Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press). October 28, 2005. “Roundtable on the Rule of Law.” University of Montreal.
University of Toronto, Faculty of Law, May, 2005.
Presented “The Underlying Justification of Fuller’s Internal Morality of Law.”
University of Ottawa, Department of Philosophy, February, 2005.
Presented “Hobbes and the Power/Authority Distinction.”
Faculty Lecture Series, McGill University, Montreal, November 2004.
Presented “Trust as a Constitutional Basis of Legal Authority.”
Faculty Law Seminar, McGill University, Montreal, March 2004.
Presented “A Tale of Two Paradigms: The Balancing and the Rights Approaches in Canadian Public Law.”
Queen’s Law Development Conference, Kingston, February 2004.
Presented “The Justice System in Guatemala after the Peace Accords.”
Canadian Association of Law Teachers Conference. Dalhousie University, Halifax, May 2003.
Presented “The Fiduciary Nature of Free-Standing Public Duties.”
International Forum on Constitutional Reform, Indigenous Peoples and Justice. Ombudsman of
Peru/Human Rights Office of the Catholic Church of Peru/International Institute on Law and Society, Lima,
Presented in Spanish “Comparative Approaches to Indigenous Rights.”
The Authority of Reason. University of Toronto, Toronto, January 2003.
Summarised and critiqued papers submitted by Professors David Mullan, Lorne Sossin and Geneviève Cartier.
Administration of Justice and Indigenous Peoples from the Perspective of Intercultural Law. Supreme Court
of Venezuela, Caracas, April 2002.
Presented in Spanish “Protection of Indigenous Rights in Canada: Reconciling State Sovereignty with the Pre-
existence of Distinctive Aboriginal Societies.”