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Conference Director and Convenor

Jason N.E. Varuhas

Dr Jason N E Varuhas is a Professor of Law at the University of Melbourne, and Co-Director of Studies for the Government Law and Public and International Law programmes in the Melbourne Law Masters. He is also an Associate Fellow of the Centre for Public Law at the University of Cambridge.

Professor Varuhas’s research and teaching interests cross the public law-private law divide; his specialisms lie in administrative law, the law of torts, the law of remedies, and the intersection of public and private law.

Conference Convenor

Michael Pal

Professor Michael Pal researches primarily the law of democracy, comparative constitutional law, and election law. He publishes in law, political science, and public policy.

He is the author of over 27 academic articles and is currently at work on a book manuscript on the comparative constitutional law and politics of election commissions. He is also working on projects related to the notwithstanding clause, voter suppression, democracy and new technologies, and voting rights.

Conference Convenor

Vanessa MacDonnell

Vanessa MacDonnell is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Law (Common Law Section) and Co-Director of the uOttawa Public Law Centre. She researches in the areas of Canadian constitutional law, constitutional theory, comparative constitutional law and criminal law. In 2019 she was selected for membership in the Global Young Academy.

Professor MacDonnell’s research examines the constitutional functions of the executive branch, inter-institutional relationships, unwritten constitutional norms and principles, and the relationship between Canada’s legal and political constitutions. She also writes about police powers and the jury.

Conference Manager

Joanne Murray

Dr. Joanne Murray is a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Ottawa's Faculty of Law, Common Law Section and will be working with the Public Law Centre in the organisation of the 2024 Public Law Conference.

Dr. Murray’s research focuses on the ways in which unwritten constitutional principles and norms are power-conferring in nature. This research builds on her doctorate (McGill University, 2023) and her LLM (University of Cambridge, 2014). In her doctoral dissertationexternal link, she argued that the duty of reasonableness in administrative law and the duty of loyalty in trusts law are both power-conferring. Her dissertation has been nominated for the Minerve award and was funded by the prestigious Vanier Scholarship.