Appointment of University Professor Jutta Brunnée as Dean, Faculty of Law (PDAD&C #31)

From: Cheryl Regehr, Vice-President & Provost
Date: December 2, 2020
Re: Appointment of University Professor Jutta Brunnée as Dean, Faculty of Law (PDAD&C #31)

I am delighted to announce that the Agenda Committee of Academic Board has approved the appointment of University Professor Jutta Brunnée as Dean of the Faculty of Law for a five-year term from January 1, 2021 to December 31, 2025. Professor Brunnée currently serves as the Metcalf Chair in Environmental Law at the Faculty of Law.

Professor Brunnée has served in several leadership positions at the Faculty, and has demonstrated exceptional administrative ability, insight, and a commitment to fostering inclusive excellence in all its forms. From 2010 to 2014, Professor Brunnée served as Associate Dean, Graduate Studies. During her term, she helped to launch the Global Professional LLM degree program, revitalized the June Callwood Scholarship Program for Indigenous graduate students, led curricular reform in the LLM program, and continued her careful supervision of many doctoral students who have gone on to very successful careers. Following this, Professor Brunnée was appointed Interim Dean in 2014, and served again in an acting capacity as Associate Dean, Graduate Studies in 2017. During her time in these leadership roles, Professor Brunnée was noted for her ability to guide the Faculty through change in a calm, careful, and consensus-building manner. Professor Brunnée’s achievements have furthered the Faculty’s place as the premier law school in Canada.

Professor Brunnée has received virtually every international honour in her field. She was elected to the Board of Editors of the American Journal of International Law, the most respected and cited journal in her field, at a time when only a handful of non-Americans had served on the board in the over a century of the journal’s history. She is one of very few scholars who has been awarded two Certificates of Merit by the American Society of International Law, most recently for her book International Climate Change Law, and for her earlier book Legitimacy and Legality in International Law: An Interactional Account. In addition to more than 100 articles, book chapters and book reviews, Professor Brunnée has authored, coauthored, or co-edited seven books. She has also been a Scholar-in-Residence at the Department of Foreign Affairs (1998-1999), providing legal advice in negotiations under the Climate Change and Biodiversity Conventions. As a result, Professor Brunnée was elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 2013, and in 2017, she was elected to the Nobel prize-winning Institut de droit international, widely regarded as international law’s most exclusive learned society. In 2019, she gave an invited course at the Hague Academy of International Law, the ultimate honour for an international lawyer. She was also recently appointed a member of Germany’s Committee of Experts and the Excellence Commission that oversees the Excellence Strategy for German universities.

Most recently, in July 2020, Professor Brunnée received the University of Toronto’s highest distinction – the rank of University Professor. Professor Brunnée was recognized with this distinguished title for her discipline-shaping research in two fields: she is the world’s most significant scholar of international environmental law, and she is a leading figure in the general theory of international law. The combined power of her scholarship in these fields makes her work of the first importance to addressing global climate change.

Professor Brunnée earned a law degree and doctorate in law at Johannes-Gutenberg Universität in Mainz, and an LL.M. from Dalhousie University. Her teaching career began at McGill University’s Faculty of Law, before moving to the Faculty of Law at the University of British Columbia. In 2000, Professor Brunnée joined the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Law.

Professor Brunnée service to the University and to the Faculty of Law during her time as Associate Dean, Graduate Studies and Interim Dean has been exemplary. Her consultative leadership style, commitment to teaching and learning, and dedication to inclusive excellence will be invaluable to the Faculty’s continued success in the years ahead. Please join me in congratulating Professor Brunnée on this appointment.