Testimonial by Trade Law Bureau, Government of Canada

September 18, 2018

Beneficiary: Trade Law Bureau, Government of Canada


Clinic: uOttawa-Queen’s Joint Clinic, 2017-2018


Project: Secretariat Support for Ad Hoc Panels under Free Trade Agreements: Options and Challenges and other confidential projects (Read here)


“The Canadian Government, in particular its Trade Policy and Trade Law units, has been a longstanding collaborator with TradeLab through the University of Ottawa and Queens University.  We have been a beneficiary and a provider of mentors on quite a few topics over the last 5 years or so.  I can say from my perspective in the Canadian government, our collaboration with TradeLab has a number of tangible advantages:


It has encouraged greater interaction between legal and policy practitioners in the Canadian government and students, which I think has both been a positive learning experience for the students, and a positive outreach and learning opportunity for the government officials.  Often in those interactions the officials have learned things we did not already know. More specifically, a number of projects have encouraged exploring ideas and legal concepts that we would not have been able to do in the Canadian government in the same depth.  Some examples include a better understanding of the operation of particular trade action of other countries; interesting ideas and facts about potential use of secretariats in international dispute resolution; exploration of legal issues related to Brexit; and ideas related to a potential multilateral investment court.


Finally, and somewhat related to the first point, I think TradeLab has provided students with an opportunity to learn in a realistic way about how to structure, present, and respond to comments, on key legal issues, which to my way of thinking is a tangible change in that it creates a greater cadre of qualified and proficient trade lawyers of the future.”


- Robert Brookfield

Director General

Trade Law Bureau

Government of Canada

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