Canadian Animal Law Conference 2020

September 11 - 13, 2020

Online Conference

NOTE: Due to the pandemic, the conference will now be held online. This is a call for a second round of submissions, designed to include additional speakers focused on the relationship between animal law and policy and public health, pandemics, and the impact on animals of the pandemic.  We also encourage submissions on all topics from those who were unable to travel to an in-person conference. All submissions previously submitted will still be considered for the conference, but proposed presenters are welcome to revise a previous proposal, or submit a new one.

Call for Submissions

Nonhuman animals occupy a precarious and vulnerable place in our shared world, used on an industrial scale for food, science, clothing, entertainment, and companionship. The law often makes a bad situation worse by facilitating and justifying the many ways in which they are used. Yet animal law scholars, practitioners, and advocates fight tirelessly to imagine ways in which nonhuman animals can be treated that are consistent with their interests. 

Submissions for the second annual Canadian Animal Law Conference are invited from scholars, practitioners, advocates, and students on topics relating to advocacy, litigation, legislation, policy, and our legal and ethical relationship with nonhuman animals. In particular, we invite presentations that reflect on the legal position of nonhuman animals in our shared world as companion animals, objects of entertainment, the source objects for animal-use industries (such as fur and food), or living their lives in the wild. We are also particularly interested in the relationship between human use of animals and pandemics and other threats to public health, and how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected animals and animal protection organizations. Subjects might include, but are not limited to legislative reform, litigation strategies, issues relating to law enforcement, public policy initiatives, legal or other forms of education, and historical or philosophical studies. 

We welcome a variety of perspectives and formats, including traditional academic paper presentations, panel discussion proposals on a particular issue, debates, and shorter presentations on cases and other topics of interest. The goal is to focus on the place of animals in our shared world through meaningful engagement with law, policy, and scholarship happening in Canada, North America and across the globe. We are excited to explore the possibilities offered by an online program, including increased international participation and content as participants are freed from the constraints imposed by physical travel. To that end, we particularly welcome additional proposals focused on animal law topics relevant to an international audience.


To submit, please send the following information to


  • Abstract & title (maximum 150 words; panel proposals may be 150 words per panelist)

  • Biography (maximum 150 words)

  • CV (maximum two pages)

  • Headshot


The revised deadline for submissions is Friday, June 5, 2020. Applicants will be notified of whether their submission has been accepted by Friday, June 19, 2020. Due to a high volume of submissions and a desire to include as many presenters as possible, most speakers will be organized into panels. We particularly encourage panel proposals.


Please note that all presenters must register for the conference. A separate student conference will be held on Friday, September 11, 2020. Students interested in presenting at or participating in the student conference should monitor the conference website for additional updates.

Announcing the Scholars Track at the Canadian Animal Law Conference

The Canadian Animal Law Conference is pleased to announce that the upcoming September 11-13, 2020 Conference will feature a Scholars Track of presentations, thanks to the sponsorship of the Brooks Institute for Animal Rights Law & Policy.


The Scholars Track is an opportunity for presenters and attendees to benefit from deeper consideration of an area of animal law and policy. Presenting in the Scholars Track is not limited to scholars or academics, but is open to all those able to present papers with an exceptional level of expertise, professionalism, and scholarship.     



  • Significant expertise in presented subject matter

  • Substantial, current, and relevant paper, which will be made available to conference attendees and must be provided to the conference organizers at least two weeks prior to the event

  • Presentation of up to one hour, plus up to 30 minutes of Q&A discussion on the presented topic


Scholars Track presenters will be selected by a committee of other recognized scholars and respected practitioners, and recognized by:

  • Waived conference registration

  • $2,000 (CAD) award stipend


To apply, please send the following information to with the subject line “Scholars Track Submission”:

  • Abstract and title (maximum 300 words)

  • Finished or draft paper, if available or if not available then the anticipated number of pages;

  • 2-3 page CV, highlighting animal law and policy expertise

  • Biography (maximum 150 words)

  • Headshot


Applications for the Scholars Track will be accepted until Friday, June 5, 2020 at midnight ET. Applicants will be notified whether their submission has been accepted by Friday, June 19, 2020.


As there are a limited number of spots available for the Scholars Track, please indicate in your application whether in the event of an unsuccessful application, you would like to be considered for the regular conference programming. Presentations will generally be limited to one at the conference in total (not including chairing and other administrative roles).

A PDF version of the Call for Submissions is available here.

Canadian Animal Law Conference 2020

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© 2020 by Animal Justice