John Packer is Neuberger-Jesin Professor of International Conflict Resolution in the Faculty of Law, and Director of the Human Rights Research and Education Centre, at the University of Ottawa. He has led a professional career in the field of international human rights, diplomacy and security for over 30 years. Prior to taking up his current position, he spent two years (2012-2014) as the Constitutions and Process Design Expert on the United Nations’ Standby Team of Mediation Experts attached to the Department of Political Affairs, advising in numerous peace processes around the world. From 2007 to 2012, he was Professor of International Law and Director of the Human Rights Centre at the University of Essex in the UK developing and overseeing numerous programmes across several academic Departments and serving well over 250 students from over 60 countries with a professional practice-orientation at post-graduate and under-graduate levels. Prof. Packer has been a frequent consultant advising numerous governments, IGOs and NGOs on matters of peace and security, conflict prevention and resolution, diversity management, constitutional and legal reform, and the protection of human rights including minorities. Amongst his specialized professional practice is peace process design including the Women, Peace and Security agenda, notably in respect of structured dialogues (e.g., National Dialogues and similar institutions incorporating women’s effective participation and gender perspectives). In 2004, he was a co-founder of the Initiative on Quiet Diplomacy which has worked towards institutional capacity building for preventive diplomacy on the part of regional and other inter-governmental organizations around the world. In 2003-2004, Prof. Packer was a Visiting Assistant Professor of International Law at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and a Fellow at the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. From 1995 to 2004, he was Senior Legal Adviser and then named the first Director of the Office of the High Commissioner on National Minorities of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, located in The Hague. He was previously (1991-1995) a Human Rights Officer at the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva from where he investigated serious violations of human rights in Iraq, Afghanistan, Myanmar (Burma), attacks against Judges and Lawyers, as well as cases of Arbitrary Detention and Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances around the world; he also drafted the Secretary-General’s first reports on the Use of Forensic Sciences in Human Rights Investigations and on Civil Defense Forces and State Responsibility. Prior to his employment with the UN, Prof. Packer was a consultant for the International Labour Organisation (1989-1991) and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (1987-1989). He holds degrees in Political Studies and Law, was a Fellow at Cambridge University’s Lauterpacht Centre for International Law in 1994, and has lectured at universities and professional institutions around the world. He has been widely published, and contributes to the editing of a number of scholarly journals. He also serves on the Boards of a number of NGOs and is a Member of the Expert Advisory Panel for the Shared Societies Project of the Club de Madrid comprising over 100 former Heads of State and Government of democracies.  

Event Details

01:30 PM - 02:30 PM CST