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Gender and Governance

Gender Equality, Inclusive Governance and the Law: Aligned for a Better World

2018 Annual Conference, January 22-23, 2018 

125 Sussex Drive, Ottawa, ON

Tuesday January 23, 2017 - 10:45am - Session 1a

Session: Gender and Governance: Learning from the Data and What the Data Fails to Tell Us



Natasha Affolder, Peter A. Allard School of Law


Catherine Dauvergne, Peter A. Allard School of Law

Sara Ghebremusse, Osgoode Hall Law School York University


This panel tackles the challenge of identifying what we know and do not yet know about gender and inclusive governance by interrogating the knowledge base underlying three distinct areas of international law: refugee policy, mineral resource governance, and climate law. Panellists will speak to the critical issue of how limited knowledge bases shape and infect international law-making. The panel seeks to advance awareness of the gendered nature of knowledge generation practices, of blind-spots that permeate foreign policy, and to generate prescriptions for scholars, policymakers and practitioners who share a passion for promoting more inclusive practices of international lawmaking.


Natasha Affolder’s teaching and research in the areas of transnational law and environmental governance address some of the most challenging and complex issues of our time. Across legal fields, she is investigating how legal ideas travel and the consequences of law’s unexpected ‘infectious tendencies’. Professor Affolder is an Associate Professor at the Peter A. Allard School of Law and serves as the School’s Associate Dean Research & International. Committed to research conversations that span disciplines, she is a Faculty Associate at the Institute for Resources, Environment & Sustainability and the Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies. Professor Affolder has put her scholarly expertise to work as an advisor to First Nations, environment and development NGO’s, and governments, both in Canada and internationally. This includes recent experiences teaching in the Asian Development Bank’s Environmental Law Champions ‘Train the Trainers’ program and training Canadian judges on sustainability and law. 

Catherine Dauvergne is the eighth dean of the Peter A. Allard School of Law. Professor Dauvergne has been working in the area of refugee, immigration, and citizenship law over the past quarter of a century.  For a decade she held the Canada Research Chair in Migration Law.  In 2012, Dauvergne was named a Fellow of the Trudeau Foundation in recognition of her contributions to public discourse in Canada. She has written three books that take a broad perspective on the theoretical underpinnings of these areas of law, including considering how human rights principles and discourses fit into a migration and citizenship framework. Dauvergne is also an editor or coauthor of four other volumes, including Canada’s immigration and refugee law casebook.  Much of Dauvergne’s work engages feminist critique of the law, and the place of women in immigration, refugee, and citizenship laws.

Sara Ghebremusse is a PhD candidate at Osgoode Hall Law School York University, and a Visiting Assistant Professor at the Peter A. Allard School of Law at the University of British Columbia. Her doctoral research conducts a comparative analysis of mineral resource governance in Botswana, South Africa, and Zambia to assess whether new forms of state activism in resource extraction adequately respond to "good governance" concerns. Ghebremusse has received numerous academic awards, including a SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship, and a CIGI International Law Research Program Doctoral Scholarship.