Re-Appointment of Professor John Packer as the Neuberger-Jesin Professor

Posted on Friday, June 4, 2021

The Common Law Section is pleased to announce the re-appointment of Professor John Packer as the Neuberger-Jesin Professor of International Conflict Resolution for a second four-year term, to June 30, 2025. 

In April 2018, Professor Packer was appointed the inaugural Neuberger-Jesin Professor of International Conflict Resolution for an initial three-year term.  The Professorship was created thanks to a generous gift by spouses Edie Neuberger, LLB ’81, and Norm Jesin, LLB ’81, who attended the Faculty of Law, Common Law Section, together and graduated in 1981. 

Over the course of the past three years, John has brought his considerable energy and expertise to the work of the Neuberger-Jesin Professorship.  He has used his vast international network to provide opportunities for our students and he has created and taught a clinical course in international conflict resolution under the auspices of the professorship.  

The Neuberger-Jesin Professor has been, and will continue to be, active as a conflict resolution expert internationally and engage students from uOttawa in this work to enhance their own training in resolution, mediation and arbitration of international conflicts. The Neuberger-Jesin Professor operates a clinical course in international conflict resolution as part of an international mediation lab. 

“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. Jesin, a labour lawyer, arbitrator and mediator, knows first-hand the importance of conflict resolution skills.  

Professor Packer is the Director of the University’s Human Rights Research and Education Centre (HRREC). He is an experienced practitioner bringing to the University 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 has the international experience and contacts to provide incredible opportunities for our students here at uOttawa.” – Dean Adam Dodek 

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. 

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