Vanessa Gruben
Vanessa Gruben
Associate Professor

57 Louis Pasteur St. Room 363
Office: 613-562-5800 ext. 3089
Office Fax: 613-562-5124


Vanessa Gruben is a professor in the Common Law Section of the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Law. A recognized expert in Canadian health law and policy, her scholarship probes some of the most difficult contemporary legal and ethical issues related to health care. Specifically, her research explores the law and ethics regarding assisted reproduction, harm reduction, organ donation and transplantation, and health care professional self-regulation.

Professor Gruben is the co-editor of the 5th edition of Canada’s leading health law text, Canadian Health Law and Policy (LexisNexis, 2017). She is also co-author of Families and the Law in Canada: Cases and Commentary (Captus, 2019). Her research has been funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), Canadian Blood Services, and the Foundation for Legal Research.

In addition to her research, Professor Gruben teaches courses on introductory health law, reproductive health law, property law, and family law. She has also taught courses on access to health care and public health law.

Professor Gruben has made numerous substantial contributions beyond academia. She was formerly a member of the Health Professions Appeal and Review Board and the Health Services Appeal and Review Board. She currently serves as board member of the Canadian Health Coalition and AMS Healthcare. She has appeared on behalf of Amnesty International Canada before the Supreme Court of Canada in Charkaoui v. Canada, [2007] 1 S.C.R. 350; Charkaoui v. Canada, [2008] 2 S.C.R. 326; Khadr v. Canada, [2010] SCC 3; and the Canadian Human Rights Tribunal.

Professor Gruben is a graduate of the University of Ottawa’s Common Law program. She clerked for Chief Justice Richard of the Federal Court of Appeal and then Justice Bastarache of the Supreme Court of Canada. She was called to the bar in Ontario in 2003, after which she practiced as an associate in the litigation group of a national law firm. She joined the Faculty of Law after graduating as a James Kent Scholar from Columbia University’s Master of Laws program.


  • CML2305B Family Law
  • CML 3374B/CML5121B Access to Health Care
  • CML1108A Property Law

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