Member of the Bar of Ontario ( Barrister & solicitor), Professor Fathally,holds a PhD, an LLM and an LLL from the University of Ottawa, as well as Maîtrise and a University Diploma of Legal Studies from the University of Tunis. He is a specialist in comparative law and international humanitarian law, with research focusing on a variety of complex legal topics and current events that promote critical analysis and dialogue on the various relationships between law, religion and human rights. Through his research and teaching, as well as his deep knowledge of legal and political issues in Canadian foreign policy and international human rights, Professor Fathally has quickly become an internationally renowned expert. He is a recipient of the prestigious Van Calker Scholarship from the Swiss Institute of Comparative Law, the University of Ottawa’s Gerald A. Beaudoin Scholarship and several other scholarships and grants. He is also an expert consultant to several international and intergovernmental organizations, including the World Health Organization , the World Justice Project and the Varieties of Democracy ( University of Oslo).
Professor Fathally was a co-founder of JuriGlobe in 2007, oversaw the launching of the group’s innovative and widely-used website in 2009, and serves as the group’s current Executive Director and Senior Researcher. The JuriGlobe website – JuriGlobe World Legal Systems, www.juriglobe.ca – serves as an essential comparative legal tool, describing the legal systems in use around the world, the different official languages used in different jurisdictions, and the most important international commercial conventions at play in regions around the globe. In addition to becoming an educational tool for the teaching of comparative law and international law, and a key source of information for a number of international institutions and organizations, JuriGlobe work has drawn the attention of the legal scientific community in general, as evidenced by quotes and comments in various recent publications (e.g., in the American Journal of Comparative Law; Notarius, the scientific journal of the international Union of Notaries; and the Journal of UNESCO).
As a professor of comparative law courses, specifically the world’s dominant contemporary legal systems, Professor Fathally emphasizes the importance of dialogue between legal cultures by explaining to students the different correlations between the world’s major legal traditions. He engages his students in a conversation-like manner and students are actively encouraged to raise questions. Within the University of Ottawa’s unique law school, which offers both common law and civil law courses in both French and English, Professor Fathally works to bridge the gaps between Canada’s two legal traditions by offering a course on civil law reasoning to students who have previously received training only in common law. In recognition of the quality of his teaching, Professor Fathally was awarded the prestigious Capital Educator’s Award by the Ottawa Network for Education (ONE) in 2015 after being a finalist for the same award in 2014. This award celebrates the achievements of outstanding educators and commends public education in the Ottawa community. Candidates from the University of Ottawa are selected by a committee at the University’s central administration on the basis of course evaluations completed by students. In the biography presented by the ONE upon awarding Professor Fathally the Capital Educator’s Award, the organization called him “a model of success for young people from immigrant backgrounds.”
Professor Fathally is frequently asked by Canadian and international media for his analysis of national and international issues related to the different armed conflicts in the Middle –East, the interaction between systems of law and religion in the resolution of armed conflicts, the political changes recently experienced by certain Arab countries and the impact of these changes on women's rights, as well as countless other topics concerning the Arab-Muslim world and the legal implications of Canadian foreign policy in the Middle East. Drawing on his expertise in comparative law, Professor Fathally takes very seriously the need to educate the public on such topics, and he has been widely recognized for his efforts. In 2013, with a résumé that then boasted over hundreds of national and international media appearances, Professor Fathally was awarded the University of Ottawa’s Excellence in Media Relations Award, an impressive accomplishment given the University of Ottawa’s reputation as a leader in Canadian University media hits. According to the selection committee, Professor Fathally ranked as the University’s “most popular expert among the Canadian public” and the committee noted that “he has become a model of excellence for his peers.” This recognition led to him being hired in 2014 as a collaborator on the French-language program “Les Voies du Retour” mounted by Canada’s French-language public broadcaster, Radio-Canada. In only a few short years as a professor, Jabeur Fathally has become one of Canada’s go-to sources for understanding the specificities of Islamic law, and for bringing a knowledge of contemporary legal systems to the Canadian public.
Following the political changes in various Arab countries after the Arab Spring in 2011, and at the insistence of Professor Fathally, the JuriGlobe group collaborated with the University of Ottawa’s Human Rights Research and Education Centre (HRREC) in the creation of numerous workshops and conferences aimed at providing the Canadian public with a better understanding of the challenges posed by these changes and, more specifically, to draw the public’s attention to the impact of these changes on women's rights in the region. Indeed, Professor Fathally was among the first Canadian intellectuals to draw attention to the specific challenges these policy changes posed for Arab women. His article “Les droits des femmes à l’aube du printemps arabe : de « ne pas oublier les femmes » au « Femmes : n’oubliez pas ! »” [Translation: “The rights of women at the dawn of the Arab Spring: From ‘do not forget the women’ to ‘Women: do not forget!’”, won the prestigious Paul Pinchaud award in 2013 for the best scholarly article published in the journal Études internationals, awarded by the Institute of International Studies of Laval University. In addition to the excellence of the text, the Committee stressed its originality and its timeliness.
Jabeur Fathally is a member of the Faculty of graduate studies of the University of Ottawa and entitled to supervise Ph.D and Master thesis.