Now in its 49th year, the Annual Conference of the Canadian Council on International Law (CCIL) is the largest annual international law conference in Canada, attracting 300-400 academics, university students, and practitioners from the public, private, and non-profit sectors from across Canada and around the world.
This year's CCIL conference will take place in Ottawa on 29-30 October 2020. The theme of the conference is International Law in 2020: Fit for Purpose?
International Law in 2020: Fit for Purpose?
In a world facing ever-changing challenges, many look to international law for answers. Still there are those who believe that international law and the institutions that operate within it are unable to meet these challenges. The year 2020 gives us an opportunity to reflect upon the purpose(s) of international law, to critically examine whether international law is equipped to meet those objectives and look into the future for sustainable solutions
Important challenges permeate many areas of international law and call for common or coordinated responses from the international community. The issues are vast and varied: climate change regulation and the difficulties in implementing change, trade wars and attacks on multilateral trade institutions, actions that undermine mutual defense and collective security, set backs in dealing with nuclear proliferation, threats to human rights and indigenous rights, new technologies (including artificial intelligence) and their disruptive effects, issues of efficacy and legitimacy of international dispute settlement, amongst others.
The Canadian Council on International Law (CCIL) invites international law scholars, decision and policy-makers, practitioners, and students of international law at its 49th Annual Meeting in 2020 to reflect upon whether international law is ‘fit for purpose’. Some questions participants may wish to reflect on globally or concerning any area of international law, include:
• Which aspects of the current system are fit for purpose? And which are not?
• How is international law adapting to meet the needs of our global community? How can international law be made more agile, while maintaining its resiliency? How to avoid paralysis?
• How might the role of various players within the world order change or evolve in order to achieve varied objectives?
• How would changes to international law’s institutions or architecture help successfully meet the challenges of our time?
• Are States paying more or less attention to their international obligations today than in the past? Do we expect international law to do too much?
We look forward to seeing such questions addressed from a variety of perspectives.
Guidelines for Submission:
Academics and practitioners from the public, private and non-profit sectors are invited to submit proposals for sessions (e.g. panel discussions), for conference papers or presentations. A proposal may cover any area of international law, as long as it fits into the conference's theme, broadly construed. Both theoretical and practical contributions, in French, English or both, are welcome. Early-career academics and those wishing to present research in progress are especially encouraged to submit proposals. Where appropriate, the co-chairs will group research presentations into a single session showcasing multiple areas of research, with each individual being assigned a portion of the total time.
How does it work?
Complete the application questionnaire in the link below by
March 23, 2020
Successful applicants will be notified by April 30, 2020.
The selection process is competitive. The following are some of the criteria for decision-making:
Originality: Does the proposal address a novel issue, or offer a new way of looking at a well-known problem?
Format: Although we accept proposals for traditional presentations or panels, we appreciate creative ways to structure your session: e.g. a debate or a Q&A.
Speaker line-up: Are the speakers confirmed? It is highly preferable to confirm all speakers before proposing a session.
Diversity: The conference co-chairs intend to promote diversity and representativeness in every session, and in the conference as a whole
If your proposal is selected:
A short biography will be required for each speaker.
All speakers must make their way to Ottawa for the conference. In exceptional circumstances, limited travel funding may be available for speakers. Please indicate any needs in this regard in your proposal.
Everyone presenting during your session will be required to register as one of the following presenter registration types:
You will have access to all conference programming and activities during the entire conference. Includes CCIL Membership for 2020-2021. ($225; a 50% discount).
You will have access to all conference programming and activities during the entire conference, with the exception of the closing reception for which you may purchase a ticket. Includes Student CCIL Membership for 2020-2021. ($85; closing reception ticket would be an additional $40)
You will have access to your session only, no membership included. (No fee; however we encourage you to become a member of the CCIL)
If you are selected to present in a breakout room where simultaneous interpretation (English / French) will be provided, you will be required to submit your materials (ppt, speaking notes; draft forms acceptable) 10 days in advance. This allows the interpreters time to prepare.
Point of Contact:
For additional information regarding panel or session topics, please contact the conference co-chairs (Patricia Galvão Ferreira and Elizabeth Whitsitt) at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For technical assistance with submitting this form, please contact the CCIL Annual Conference Coordinator, Julie Begbie at email@example.com.
Click on the "next" button to complete the following questionnaire.