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Anna Purkey
Anna Purkey
Assistant Professor
Department of Sociology & Legal Studies

DCL, McGill University

LLM, University of Toronto

McGill Integrated BCL/LLB Programme, McGill University

519-884-8111 

28257
SH 2011
BIOGRAPHY

Although I am happily ensconced in academia now, I am a lawyer by training having completed my legal education at McGill University and having previously worked as legal counsel for the Department of Justice in Ottawa. After discovering my love of teaching, I completed my Doctorate of Civil Law in 2015 at McGill University. My dissertation, entitled Legal Empowerment for a Dignified Life: Fiduciary duty and human rights-based capabilities in protracted refugee situations, addresses the role of legal empowerment in situations of long-term refugee encampment. Exploring themes of human dignity, governance and human rights, and drawing on fieldwork conducted in a Burmese refugee camp in Thailand, I apply the capabilities approach to protracted refugee situations to argue that the legal empowerment of refugees needs to be incorporated as a central focus of refugee assistance. I completed my education with a post-doctoral fellowship at the Human Rights Research and Education Centre at University of Ottawa and as a Grotius Visiting Scholar at the Faculty of Law at the University of Michigan.

 

As reflected in both my research and my professional activities, my areas of interest include forced migration, refugee law, human rights law, and international law with an emphasis on topics related to human rights, social justice and legal empowerment. The organizing concept that underpins all of my work, as a researcher, a lawyer and as an activist, is that of the inherent dignity of the human being and so I seek to explore the ways in which law can act as an instrument of both oppression and empowerment of vulnerable and marginalized groups.

 

When not working, I can usually be found on my bike, enjoying the outdoors, or indulging at the local markets.

PUBLICATIONS

The content that follows may only represent a portion of the Faculty member’s work.

 

Chapters

Anna Purkey, “Transformative Justice and Legal Conscientization: Refugee Participation in Peace Processes, Repatriation, and Reconciliation” in Megan Bradley & James Milner, eds. Shaping the Struggles of Their Times: Refugees, Peacebuilding and Resolving Displacement, Georgetown University Press. (Forthcoming)

 

Articles

Peer Reviewed
Anna Purkey, “Justice, Reconciliation, and Ending Displacement: Legal Empowerment and Refugee Engagement in Transitional Processes” (2016) 35(4) Refugee Survey Quarterly 1.

 

Anna Purkey, “A Dignified Approach: Legal Empowerment and Human Rights in Protracted Refugee Situations” (2014) 27:2 Journal of Refugee Studies 260.

 
Anna Lise Purkey, “Questioning Governance in Protracted Refugee Situations: The Fiduciary Nature of the State-Refugee Relationship” (2013) 25:4 International Journal of Refugee Law 693. 

 

Non-Peer Reviewed
Anna Purkey, “Protecting Refugee Property and Dignity: A Brief Comment on the Legal and Ethical Basis of the Danish ‘Jewelry Law’,” (9 December 2016) RefLaw, online: www.reflaw.org/protecting-refugee-property-and-dignity-a-brief-comment-o...

 

François Crépeau & Anna Purkey, “Facilitating Mobility and Fostering Diversity: Getting EU Migration Governance to Respect the Human Rights of Migrants,” (04 May 2016) Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS), online: www.ceps.eu/publications/facilitating-mobility-andfostering-diversity-ge...

 
Anna Lise Purkey (2015) Legal Empowerment for a Dignified Life: Fiduciary duty and human rights-based capabilities in protracted refugee situations. Doctoral dissertation in Civil Law, McGill University.

 
Book review of Kirsten McConnachie, Governing Refugees: Justice, Order and Legal Pluralism (New York: Routledge, 2014), (2014) 30:2 Refuge 103.

GRANTS, FELLOWSHIPS, AWARDS

Grants

Michigan Grotius Research Scholar, University of Michigan Law School (March-April 2016)
SSGRC Connections Grant (December 2015)
Graduate Travel Award, McGill University, Montreal (2014)
Graduate Travel Award, McGill University, Montreal, Awarded to fund fieldwork on the Thai-Burmese border (2011)
Graduate Travel Award, McGill University, Montreal, Awarded to fund attendance at the Annual Winter Course on Forced Migration in Kolkata, India (2011)

 

Fellowships
Gordon F. Henderson Post-Doctoral Fellowship, Human Rights Research and Education Centre, University of Ottawa (September 2015-August 2016)
FQRSC Doctoral Scholarship, Fonds de Recherche Société et Culture, Québec (2012-2014)
Richard H. Tomlinson Doctoral Fellowship (2009-2012)

 

Awards
Lisa Gilad Prize, International Association for the Study of Forced Migration (July 2016)
Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers Award (2013)

COURSES TAUGHT

LS 101: Introduction to Legal Studies

LS 202: Criminal Law

LS 401:  Law, Culture, and Rights

LS 402: Perspectives on Legal Authority and Subjectivity

AREAS OF GRADUATE SUPERVISION

International law

Human rights law

International human rights

Forced migration

Refugee rights

Refugee law

PROFESSIONAL, ADMINISTRATIVE, AND COMMUNITY SERVICES

The content that follows may only represent a portion of the Faculty member’s work.

 

Professional
Member, Barreau du Québec, Quebec Bar Association (July 2006-present)
Member, Canadian Council for Refugees Legal Affairs Advisory Committee (May 2011-present)
Member, Board of Directors, Action Réfugiés Montréal (September 2012-present)
Vice-chair, Board of Directors, Action Réfugiés Montréal (May 2014-September 2015)
Member, Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers, Legal Research Committee (September 2013-2016)
Member, Editorial Advisory Panel, RefLAW a project of the University of Michigan Law School (Spring 2016-present)
Member, Canadian Association for Refugee and Forced Migration Studies (May 2017-present)

 

Administrative
St. Jerome's University
Member, Legal Studies Committee (September 2016- January 2017)

 

Community
Volunteer, Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers (Spring 2013-present)
Volunteer, Legal Assistant (Fall 2002-Spring 2005)
Volunteer, Action Réfugiés Montréal, (Fall 2002-Spring 2005)