Professor John Packer is appointed the inaugural Neuberger-Jesin Professor of International Conflict Resolution

Posted on Friday, April 27, 2018

Photo of John Packer and the Common Law Logo

Alumni Edith Neuberger (LL.B. 1981) and Norman Jesin (LL.B. 1981) donated $1 million to create professorship at the University of Ottawa Faculty of Law (Common Law Section)



Professor John Packer has been appointed the inaugural Neuberger-Jesin Professor of International Conflict Resolution at the University of Ottawa, Dean Adam Dodek of the Faculty of Law (Common Law Section) announced.

The appointment is for an initial three year term.

The Neuberger-Jesin International Conflict Resolution Professorship was created thanks to a generous gift by spouses Edie Neuberger and Norm Jesin, who attended the Faculty of Law, Common Law Section together and graduated in 1981.

The Neuberger-Jesin Professor will be active as a conflict resolution expert internationally and engage students from uOttawa in such work to enhance their own training in resolution, mediation and arbitration of international conflicts. The Neuberger-Jesin Professor will also operate a clinical course in international conflict resolution as part of an international mediation lab under the auspices of the professorship.

“We believe that we have the responsibility to make this world a better place,” said Neuberger and Jesin. Neuberger is a lawyer in private practice in Toronto. Meanwhile, Jesin, a labour lawyer, arbitrator and mediator, knows first-hand the importance of conflict resolution skills.

Professor John Packer is the Director of the University’s Human Rights Research and Education Centre (HRREC). Prof. Packer is an experienced practitioner bringing to the University of Ottawa some 20 years working for inter-governmental organizations, including in Geneva for the United Nations. From 1995 to 2004, he served as Senior Legal Adviser, then first Director of the High Commissioner on National Minorities in the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, conducting quiet preventive diplomacy and a range of successful mediation processes across Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union.

Prior to joining the University of Ottawa in 2014, Professor Packer was a Constitutions and Process Design Expert on the UN’s Standby Team of Mediation Experts attached to the Department of Political Affairs, advising in numerous peace processes and political transitions around the world focusing on conflict prevention and resolution, diversity management, constitutional and legal reform, and the protection of human rights including minorities.

“Professor Packer is ideally suited to launch the Neuberger-Jesin Professorship,” declared Dean Adam Dodek. “He has the international experience and contacts to provide incredible opportunities for our students here at uOttawa.”

In accepting the appointment, Professor Packer stated:

"This is a tremendous honour for which I am delighted to have the opportunity to help realise the vision of Ms. Neuberger and Mr. Jesin in fostering a new generation of skilled professionals."

The Common Law Section has long been at the forefront of dispute resolution studies. The University of Ottawa was the first law school in Canada to put in place a mandatory first-year course in dispute resolution (20 years ago), and the Faculty is recognized as having one of the strongest course offerings in international law in North America.

Common Law JD Program students have the option to specialize in international law, as well as dispute resolution and professionalism. The LL.M. specialization in international trade and investment law features a heavy emphasis on international dispute resolution.




For more information, please contact:

Sylvie Corbin

Director, External Relations

Faculty of Law, Common Law Section

613-562-5800, ext. 4503


Additional biographical notes on Professor John Packer.

Back to top