Dalhousie Journal of Legal Studies


The Journal’s top essay prize is named in honour of John D. Stevenson, Q.C., Partner Emeritus at Gowlings LLP in Toronto and a founding member of Smith Lyons Torrance Stevenson and Mayer, which merged with Gowlings in 2001. In a distinguished career spanning over forty years, John Stevenson combined a broad corporate practice advising business leaders, governments, and charitable organizations with his ongoing commitment to helping law students and young practitioners across Canada. The prize is awarded to the author of the top essay in each volume as selected by prize panellists.

Past Winners:


Think Tank, inaugurated in 2013, is a DJLS event designed to showcase students’ academic work, to give students a chance to present publicly, and to get feedback on their papers from an academic panel that may help guide the direction of their research. The student with the winning presentation receives a cash prize and the opportunity to publish their research in the next volume of the journal.

Past Winners:

  • Think Tank 11 (2023):
    • First Place: Zainab Adejumobi discussing termination clauses
    • Runner Up: Serena Feeney, "Untapped Ability: 852,000 Unemployed Canadians"
    • Runner Up: Devon Campbell, "Seeing the Forest for the Trees: Implementing the British Columbia Old Growth Strategic Review from an Industry Perspective"
    • Runner Up: Amelia Eaton discussing the overincarceration of Indigenous women in Canada
    • Think Tank 10 (2022):
      • First Place: André Pritchard, "Unions in the Age of Uber: The Extension of Labour Law Protections to Platform-Based Workers"
      • Runner Up: Sophie Pineau, "Anderson, Morris and evidence of anti-Black racism in sentencing"
      • Runner Up: Serena Feeney, "Search and Rescue in the Canadian Arctic"
      • Runner Up: Grace Bryson, "Mining for Justice: Remedies for Transnational Human Rights Abuse"
      • Think Tank 9 (2021):
        • First Place: Michael Michel, "Mental Age v. Chronological Age: Rethinking our Approach to Sentencing and Criminal Responsibility for Developmentally Delayed Young Persons under the Youth Criminal Justice Act"
        • Runner Up: Rachel Nagy, "A Bend in the Arc: Contemplating Identity-based Labour Rights in Canada"
        • Runner Up: Jon Goud, "Drawing Back the Curtain: Justiciability, Disability, and Healthcare Accountability"
      • Think Tank 8 (2020):
        • First Place: Maria Rizzetto, “Defective umbrella? Examining non-consensual intimate image sharing within court reasoning”
        • Runner Up: Evan Cribb, “The Charter’s Proportionality Problem: Charting a Path to Distinguishing Sections 7 and 1”
        • Runner Up: Arthur Ferguson, “Remand in Nova Scotia: The myth of consent and pre-trial detention”
      • Think Tank 7 (2019):
        • First Place: Shannon Hale, “The Bedford Trilogy and The Shifting Foundations of Vertical Stare Decisis: Emancipation From Judicial Restraint?”
        • Runner Up: Sarah Douglas, “Preventing Genocide: Reigniting the Staying Power of the Convention”
        • Runner Up: Alexander Jessome,“Over the Falls Without a Barrel”
        • Runner Up: Sohaib Mohammad, “Blockchain Technology, Smart Contracts, and The Prospective Evolution Of The Bill Of Lading”
      • Think Tank 6 (2018):
        • First Place: Chris Casher, “Moneyball in the Era of Biometrics: Ownership Rights to the Biometric Data of Professional Athletes”
        • Runner Up: Dylan Roskams-Edris, “Enhancing the Canadian Patent System: Neuromodulation and Method Patents”
        • Runner Up: Sarah Boucaud, “Dance of the Canadian Institutions: Medicare, the Charter, and Accountability”