Hassan M. Ahmad

SJD Candidate
Thesis title:
The New Immunity for Transnational Corporate Human Rights Violations
Office in Falconer Hall
84 Queen's Park
Toronto, M5S 2C5

Hassan M. Ahmad is a doctoral candidate at the University of Toronto, Faculty of Law, and recently returned from the University of Cambridge where he was a visiting scholar at the Lauterpacht Centre for International Law. Hassan's doctoral thesis explores the liability of multinational corporations in domestic courts pursuant to human rights violations in the Global South. Specifically, he analyzes the role governments play in shielding private corporations from liabiliy for alleged abuses abroad.

Recognized by the American Society of International Law as a "New Voice" and by the American Society of Comparative Law as a "Young Comparativist," Hassan's research interests have focused on doctrinal gaps in domestic and international law, particularly as they relate to access to justice issues for marginalized groups. His work has appeared in, among others, the Annual Proceedings of the American Society of International Law (ASIL)Berkeley Journal of International Law (online), Osgoode Hall Law Journal, Issues in International Criminal Justice, and the Pace International Law Review. He has presented his research at the following venues: European Society of International Law, Law and Society Association, American Society of International Law, American Society of Comparative Law, Yale Law School, the University of Cambridge, UC Berkeley, and the International Criminal Court. His legal commentary has been featured in media outlets such as the Toronto Star, CBC News, CBC Radio as well as local television, radio, and newspaper outlets. 

Hassan teaches an international law course in the Law and Society program at Wilfrid Laurier University. He also teaches an introductory course on Canadian law to graduate law students at the University of Toronto. He has guest lectured in various law and undergraduate classes at the University of Toronto and Osgoode Hall Law School. He previously co-instructed an International Criminal Law course and related moot at Osgoode Hall. 

Prior to commencing his doctoral research, Hassan was a civil litigator appearing before trial and appeal courts as well as administrative tribunals. In addition, he worked at the International Criminal Court where his research contributed to the court's first decision on command responsibility. He also served as a judicial extern for Judge Marsha S. Berzon of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Hassan continues to litigate select public interest cases including a several-week hearing at the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario (Al-Turki v. HMQ Ontario). He also supervises law students in applications to the United Nations High Commission for Refugees. 

LL.M., UC Berkeley School of Law (highest honours)
J.D., Osgoode Hall Law School
M.A. (Economics), University of Toronto
B.Sc (Biomaterials), UWO (gold medalist)
B.A., Ivey Business School, UWO (distinction)
Awards and Distinctions
Canada Graduate Scholarship in Honour of Nelson Mandela
Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship, SSHRC
Michael Smith Foreign Study Supplement, SSHRC
Nathan Strauss Q.C. Graduate Fellowship In International Law
O’Brien Fellowship for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism (Declined)
University of Toronto Doctoral Fellowship
“New Voice” in International Law - American Society of International Law
"Young Comparativist" - American Society of Comparative Law
William K. Coblentz Civil Rights Fellowship
The Honourable Ian Scott Public Interest Fellowship
Professional Affiliations
Visiting Scholar, Lauterpacht Centre for International Law, University of Cambridge
Adjunct Professor (International Law), Wilfrid Laurier University
Instructor (Canadian Legal Methods), University of Toronto, Faculty of Law
Board Member, International Law Section, Ontario Bar Association
Founding Member, International Refugee Assistance Project, Osgoode Hall Law School
Supervising Lawyer, International Human Rights Program, University of Toronto
Fellow, Philippe Kirsch Institute
Mooting Instructor (International Criminal Law), Osgoode Hall Law School
Selected Publications

Articles & Book Chapters

Hassan M. Ahmad, "The Missing Forum for Corporate Human Rights Violations in Africa" in Business and Human Rights Law in Africa (eds. D. Olawuyi & O. Abe, forthcoming 2020). 

Hassan Ahmad, Context at the International Criminal Court” (2017) 29 Pace Int’l L. Rev. 132.

Andrew Roman, Jonathan Heeney and Hassan Ahmad, “Class Actions In Canada: Conflicting Purposes and Unpredictable Outcomes” (2013) 9 Canadian Class Actions Review.

Hassan Ahmad, “The Treatment Action Campaign and the Three Dimensions of Lawyering: Reflections from the Rainbow Nation” (2013) 10 J Social Aspects of HIV/AIDS 17-24. 

Hassan Ahmad, “Equal Liability for all Members of a Joint Criminal Enterprise? Lubanga Continues the Deficiencies of the ad hoc Tribunals” (2012) 2 Issues in Int’l Criminal Justice 46.

Conference Proceedings

Hassan Ahmad, “Context at the International Criminal Court” in Conflict, Accountability, and Justice (2017) ASIL Annual Proceedings.  

Hassan Ahmad, “Traversing the Rule 76 Terrain: Strategizing the Simplified Procedure” (2017) OBA Institute Proceedings.

Book Reviews

Hassan M. Ahmad, The Case for an International Court of Civil Justice (Cambridge University Press, 2019), 57 Can YB Int'l L (2020). 

Hassan Ahmad, Complicity in International Law (Oxford University Press, 2016), 16 J. Int’l Crim Just 491 (2018).

Hassan Ahmad, The Environmental Law of Environmental Impact Assessment  (Cambridge University Press, 2010) 49 Osgoode Hall LJ (2012). 


Elsadig Sheikh et al., “Moving Targets: An Analysis of Global Forced Migration,” Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society, UC Berkeley, 2017. 


Hassan Ahmad, Courts are handcuffed on corporate human rights abuses abroad, The Conversation, 2019

Hassan Ahmad, For Corporate Liability, Look to Judges, Not Politicians, Canadian Lawyer, 2019

Hassan Ahmad, Tribunals should consider Charter claims, Law Times, 2018

Hassan Ahmad, The Charter, the Great Protector, Law Times, 2017

Hassan Ahmad, Bombs alone won't crush ISIS. What could? IPolitics, 2016.

Hassan Ahmad, The UN Security Council’s Role in Determining Crimes of Aggression, Berkeley Journal of International Law Blog, 2015.

Andrew Roman & Hassan Ahmad, Class action certification for indirect Purchaser Claims: The Sun-Rype And Pro-Sys Decisions of The British Columbia Court Of Appeal, CCH Competition Law Blog, 2011.

Research Interests
Business Corporations
Comparative Law
Critical Legal Theory
International Law
Judicial Decision-Making
Law and Globalization
Legal History
Private International Law
Tort Law and Tort Theory
Committee Members
Bhavani Raman (Dept. of History)
Elizabeth Acorn (Dept. of Political Science)

Brooke MacKenzie

SJD Candidate
Thesis title:
Rethinking lawyers' monopoly: Enhancing access to justice by redefining who (and what) can practise law
Office in Falconer Hall
84 Queen's Park
Toronto, M5S 2C5

Brooke MacKenzie is a doctoral candidate at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. Her research focuses on legal ethics and professional regulation, civil procedure, tort law, and civil justice reform. Brooke has a particular interest in how emerging technologies can improve the practice of law and the efficiency and effectiveness of our civil justice system. Her doctoral project engages with whether and how Canadian law societies can embrace artificial intelligence in the provision of legal services to serve unmet legal needs while protecting the public interest.

Brooke is also a practising lawyer at MacKenzie Barristers P.C., where her practice concentrates on issues of professional responsibility and liability as well as civil appeals. Before co-founding MacKenzie Barristers, she practised for three years in the litigation group at McCarthy Tétrault LLP. Brooke has appeared as counsel before the Supreme Court of Canada, Ontario Court of Appeal, Federal Court of Appeal, Ontario Superior Court, and the Federal Court, as well as the Law Society Tribunal and other administrative bodies.

In 2017, Brooke was awarded the OBA Foundation Chief Justice of Ontario Fellowship in Legal Ethics and Professionalism Studies for her research and writing on conflicts of interest, confidentiality obligations, lawyers' duty of loyalty to their clients, and motions for the disqualification of counsel. 

Brooke completed her LL.M. in 2016 at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law. Her Masters' thesis, "Effecting a culture shift: An empirical review of Ontario's summary judgment reforms", was published in the Osgoode Hall Law Journal in 2017, and has since been cited before the Supreme Court of Canada.

Brooke teaches Legal Ethics at Osgoode Hall Law School, and has guest lectured at the University of Toronto Faculty of Law and Queen’s University Faculty of Law. She is also regularly invited to speak at continuing professional development events on litigation and professional responsibility issues.

S.J.D. (Candidate), University of Toronto, 2018--
LL.M., University of Toronto, 2016
J.D., Queen's University, 2012
B.A., Queen's University, 2009
Awards and Distinctions
University of Toronto Graduate Fellowship in Law and Innovation (2018)
OBA Foundation Chief Justice of Ontario Fellowship in Legal Ethics and Professionalism Studies (2017-2018)
Mark MacGuigan Prize for Best Oralist, Laskin Moot (2012)
Queen's Faculty of Law Dean's Honour List (2010-2012)
Professional Affiliations
Law Society of Ontario (called to Bar of Ontario in 2013)
Adjunct Faculty, Osgoode Hall Law School
Canadian Association for Legal Ethics
Canadian Bar Association
Advocates' Society
Toronto Lawyers' Association
Selected Publications

"Explaining Disqualification: An Empirical Review of Motions for the Removal of Counsel", (2020) 45:2 Queen's Law Journal 199 (peer-reviewed).

​“Common-sense causation: How a robust and pragmatic application of the ‘but for’ test can solve the circular causation problem in cases of multiple contributing tortfeasors”, in Todd L. Archibald, ed., Annual Review of Civil Litigation, 2018 (Toronto: Thomson Reuters, 2018) 468 (co-authored).

"Developments in the Legal Profession: Lizotte, Alberta and Green and the Growing Power of Privilege and Professional Regulators", (2018) 82 Supreme Court Law Review (2d) 71 (reproduced by permission of LexisNexis Canada Inc.).

"Effecting a Culture Shift: An Empirical Review of Ontario's Summary Judgment Reform", (2017) 54:4 Osgoode Hall Law Journal 1275 (peer-reviewed).

Time for courts to go paperless”, Law Times, April 24, 2017.

​​"Shifting blame? Reassessing the tort of inducing breach of contract following A.I. Enterprises", in Todd L. Archibald and Randall Scott Echlin, eds., Annual Review of Civil Litigation, 2016 (Toronto: Thomson Reuters, 2016) 245 (reproduced by permission of Thomson Reuters Canada Limited).

"#Inappropriate: Ramifications of teachers' off-duty social media postings", (2016) 26.1 Education Law Journal 53 (reproduced by permission of Thomson Reuters Canada Limited).

​​"Backpedalling on Charter Damages: Henry v British Columbia (Attorney General)", (2016) 45(3) Advocates' Quarterly 359 (reproduced by permission of Thomson Reuters Canada Limited).

"Developments in Access to Justice: Trial Lawyers' Association of British Columbia and the Supreme Court's use of the Constitution to Protect Public Access to the Courts", (2016) 72 Supreme Court Law Review (2d) 485 (reproduced by permission of LexisNexis Canada Inc.).

"Like a prayer: Administrative law implications of the Supreme Court's freedom of religion decision in Saguenay", (2015) 34(2) Advocates' Journal 42.

"The Not-So-Bright Line Rule: Lingering Questions About Lawyers' Duty to Avoid Conflicting Interests: CN Railway v McKercher", (2014) 42 Advocates' Quarterly 422 (reproduced by permission of Thomson Reuters Canada Limited).

"Better value: Problems with the billable hour and the viability of value-based billing", (2013) 90 Canadian Bar Review 677 (reproduced by permission of the Canadian Bar Review) (peer-reviewed).

"Settling for less: How the Rules of Civil Procedure overlook the public perspective of justice", (2011) 39 Advocates' Quarterly 222 (reproduced by permission of Thomson Reuters Canada Limited).

Research Interests
Legal Ethics
Legal Process
Tort Law and Tort Theory
Committee Members

Meet new faculty member Professor Chris Essert

Tuesday, August 14, 2018
Prof. Christopher Essert

By Sheldon Gordon

Eight years ago, when he began his academic career at Queen's Faculty of Law, Chris Essert was assigned to teach a course on property law.  He discovered that the connection between property rights and equality under the law raised so many interesting questions that it was an area he should address in his research, too. 

IHRP argues that Amazonian villagers deserve justice before Canada's Supreme Court

Friday, December 12, 2014

IHRP legal team at SCCYesterday, the IHRP, along with its partners MiningWatch Canada and the Canadian Centre for International Justice (the “Joint Interveners”), made submissions before the Supreme Court of Canada in Yaiguaje v.