Roojin Habibi

Dissertation Title

The Progressive Development of International Law to Address Public Health Emergency Prevention, Preparedness and Response: The Role of Non-State Standard-Setting Efforts

Dissertation Topic

Roojin Habibi is a scholar, international consultant and lawyer specialized in global health law, governance and justice. Her dissertation examines the ways through which non-state actors articulate and promote the uptake of expert-derived principles and guidelines across jurisdictions, thereby contributing to progressive developments of international law. She focuses particularly on the contribution of such processes to the development of human rights frameworks applicable to public health emergencies, a key example being the “Siracusa Principles on the Limitation and Derogations Provisions in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights” (Siracusa Principles). Developed in 1984 through a consensus-building effort among scholars of international law and convened by a coalition of NGOs, the Siracusa Principles provide the most well-known synthesis of criteria on the lawfulness of restrictions on civil and political rights during national states of exception. While the Principles do not grapple with novel features of emergency responses to public health emergencies, such as the scientific uncertainty underpinning government actions, and the legal and ethical dilemmas posed by long-term or wider use of digital social policy interventions, they nevertheless illustrate how transnational networks of non-state actors can promote the consolidation and development of international guidelines that fill normative voids. Eventually, such guidelines may gain global traction and legitimacy within international law, equipping advocates with tools for government accountability, influencing human rights praxis, and spurring reforms of law at from national to global levels.

Education

Certificate in Transnational Law - Faculty of Law, University of Geneva

Juris Doctor (J.D.) - Faculty of Law, University of Ottawa

Master of Science (M.Sc.) - Faculty of Health Sciences, McMaster University

Honours Bachelor of Arts - Glendon College, York University

Teaching Experience

Guest Lecturer, Germs, Globalization and Governance - School of Law, University of Washington (2021-2022)

Lecturer, Osgoode PD Certificate in Cannabis Law and Regulation - Osgoode Hall Law School, York University (2021)

Guest Lecturer, Health and Human Rights - University of Ottawa (2021)

Course Instructor, Medicines Policy, Economics and Ethics - Sydney Health Ethics, University of Sydney (2018 - 2020)

Professional Experience

Research Coordinator - Global Health Law Consortium via Global Strategy Lab, York University (2020-present)

Principal - Roojin Habibi Consulting (2019-present)

Research Fellow - Global Strategy Lab, York University (2016-present)

International Consultant in Gender and Human Rights - Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) (2019-2021)

Workplace Violence & Harassment Investigator - Freelance (2019)

Candidate Lawyer - Legal Department, Canadian Medical Association (2018-2019)

Policy Analyst - Sciences Strategies Branch, Canadian Institutes of Health Research (2016-2018)

Research and Policy Intern - HIV Legal Network (formerly Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network) (2017)

Public Interest Law Fellow - Gender Research and Advocacy Project, Legal Assistance Centre (Windhoek, Namibia) (2016)

Awards
  • Joseph-Armand Bombardier CGS Program, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (2021-2024)
  • Emergency Powers Campaign - Rapid Response Grant, Open Society Foundations (2021-2022)
  • Connection Grant, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (2021-2022)
  • Ontario Graduate Scholarship (2021-2022), declined
  • Fellowship, Canadian International Council (2020-2022)
  • Newton W. Rowell Graduate Scholarship (Ontario Graduate Scholarship), Osgoode Hall Law School (2020-2021)
  • Harry W. Arthurs Fellowship, Osgoode Hall Law School (2019)
  • Manulife Award for Research on International Health Policy (2019)
  • Graduate Program in Law Scholarship, Faculty of Graduate Studies - York University (2019)
  • Fellowship in Public Interest Law, Faculty of Law - University of Ottawa (2016)
  • Graduate Program Entrance Scholarship, School of Graduate Studies - McMaster University (2012)
Publications
Works in Edited Books
  • Roojin Habibi & Thana de Campos. Commercial Determinants of Health: Corporate Social Responsibility as Global Health Policy? GLOBAL HEALTH LAW AND POLICY: ENSURING JUSTICE FOR A HEALTHIER WORLD (L. Gostin & B. Meier (Eds.), Oxford: Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2023).
  • Sharifah Sekalala & Roojin Habibi. Global Health Law: Legal Frameworks to Advance Global Health. GLOBAL HEALTH LAW AND POLICY: ENSURING JUSTICE FOR A HEALTHIER WORLD (L. Gostin & B. Meier (Eds.), Oxford: Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2023).
  • Roojin Habibi. COVID-19 and the Rights of Older Persons. AGEING AND INTERNATIONAL LAW: TOWARDS AN INTERNATIONAL LEGAL FRAMEWORK TO ADVANCE THE HEALTH AND HUMAN RIGHTS OF OLDER PERSONS (A. L. Taylor & P. C. Kuszler (Eds.), Elgar, forthcoming 2022).
  • Benjamin Mason Meier, Ana Ayala & Roojin Habibi. Global Health Law. PUBLIC HEALTH LAW: CONCEPTS AND CASE STUDIES (M. Ransom and L. Valladares (Eds.), Warren, MI: Springer Publishing, 2021).
  • Roojin Habibi & Steven J. Hoffman. Cannabis Legalization is the Inconvenient Test of Canada’s Commitment to the Rule of International Law and a Rules-Based World Order. HIGH TIMES: THE LEGALIZATION AND REGULATION OF CANNABIS IN CANADA (A. Potter and D. Weinstock (Eds.), Montreal and Kingston: McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2019).
Refereed Articles
  • Steven J. Hoffman, Pedro Villarreal, Roojin Habibi & Sophie Campbell. Mending Dispute Resolution under the International Health Regulations. INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS LAW REVIEW (forthcoming 2022).
  • Pedro Villarreal, Roojin Habibi & Allyn L. Taylor. Strengthening the Monitoring of States’ Compliance with the International Health Regulations. INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS LAW REVIEW (forthcoming 2022).
  • Alicia Ely Yamin, Stefania Negri & Roojin Habibi. Of Sea Monsters and Sandcastles: Revisiting International Legal Frameworks Regarding Public Health and Human Rights in Global Health Emergencies. YEARBOOK OF INTERNATIONAL DISASTER LAW (forthcoming 2022).
  • Benjamin Mason Meier, Allyn Taylor, Mark Eccleston-Turner, Roojin Habibi, Sharifah Sekalala & Lawrence Gostin. The World Health Organization in Global Health Law. 48 JOURNAL OF LAW, MEDICINE AND ETHICS 796-799 (2021).
  • Roojin Habibi, Steven J. Hoffman, Gian Luca Burci, Thana C. de Campos, Danwood Chirwa, Margherita M. Cinà, Stephanie Dagron, Mark Eccleston-Turner, Lisa Forman, Lawrence Gostin, Benjamin Mason Meier, Stefania Negri, Gorik Ooms, Sharifah Sekalala, Allyn L. Taylor, & Alicia Ely Yamin. The Stellenbosch Consensus on Legal National Responses to Public Health Risks Clarifying Article 43 of the International Health Regulations. INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS LAW REVIEW (published online, forthcoming, 2022).
  • Margherita M. Cinà, Steven J. Hoffman, Gian Luca Burci, Thana C. de Campos, Danwood Chirwa, Stephanie Dagron, Mark Eccleston-Turner, Lisa Forman, Lawrence Gostin, Roojin Habibi, Benjamin Mason Meier, Stefania Negri, Gorik Ooms, Sharifah Sekalala, Allyn L. Taylor, & Alicia Ely Yamin. The Stellenbosch Consensus on the International Legal Obligation to Collaborate and Assist in Addressing Pandemics: Clarifying Article 44 of the International Health Regulations. INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS LAW REVIEW (published online, forthcoming 2022).
  • Sharifah Sekalala, Lisa Forman, Roojin Habibi & Benjamin Mason Meier. Health and human rights are inextricably linked in the COVID-19 response. BMJ GLOBAL HEALTH 5: e003359 (2020).
  • Benjamin Mason Meier, Hanna Huffstetler & Roojin Habibi. Human Rights Must Be Central to the International Health Regulations. HEALTH AND HUMAN RIGHTS JOURNAL (2020).
  • Lawrence O. Gostin, Roojin Habibi & Benjamin Mason Meier. Has Global Health Law Risen to Meet the COVID-19 Challenge? Revisiting the International Health Regulations to Prepare for Future Threats. 48 JOURNAL OF LAW, MEDICINE AND ETHICS 376-381 (2020).
  • Allyn L. Taylor & Roojin Habibi. The Collapse of Global Cooperation under the WHO International Health Regulations at the Outset of COVID-19. 24 AMERICAN SOCIETY OF INTERNATIONAL LAW INSIGHTS (2020).
  • Allyn L. Taylor, Roojin Habibi, Gian Luca Burci, Stephanie Dagron, Mark Eccleston-Turner, Benjamin M. Meier, Alexandra L. Phelan, Pedro A. Villarreal, Alicia Ely Yamin, Danwood Chirwa, Lisa Forman, Gorik Ooms, Sharifah Sekalala & Steven J. Hoffman. Solidarity in the wake of COVID-19: Reimagining the International Health Regulations. 396 THE LANCET 82-83 (2020).
  • Alicia Ely Yamin & Roojin Habibi. Human Rights and Coronavirus: What’s at Stake for Truth, Trust, and Democracy? HEALTH AND HUMAN RIGHTS JOURNAL (2020).
  • Roojin Habibi, Gian Luca Burci, Thana C. de Campos, Danwood Chirwa, Margherita M. Cinà, Stephanie Dagron, Mark Eccleston-Turner, Lisa Forman, Lawrence O. Gostin, Benjamin Mason Meier, Stefania Negri, Gorik Ooms, Sharifah Sekalala, Allyn L. Taylor, Alicia Ely Yamin & Steven J. Hoffman. Do not violate the International Health Regulations during the COVID-19 outbreak. 395 THE LANCET 664 (2020).
  • Roojin Habibi. L’affaire Araya et l’accès aux recours civils fondés sur le droit coutumier international au Canada. 2 PHILIPPE KIRSCH INSTITUTE GLOBAL JUSTICE JOURNAL (2018).
  • Roojin Habibi & Steven J. Hoffman. Legalizing Cannabis Violates the UN Drug Control Treaties, But Progressive Countries Like Canada Have Options. 49 OTTAWA LAW REVIEW 427 (2018).
  • Quinn Grundy, Roojin Habibi, Adrienne Shnier, Christopher M. Mayes, & Wendy Lipworth. Decoding Disclosure: Comparing Conflict of Interest Policy Among the United States, France, and Australia. 122 HEALTH POLICY 509 (2017).
  • Roojin Habibi, Joel Lexchin, Barbara Mintzes & Anne Holbrook. Unwarranted Claims of Drug Efficacy in Pharmaceutical Sales Visits: Are Drugs Approved on the Basis of Surrogate Outcomes Promoted Appropriately? 83 BRITISH JOURNAL OF CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY 2549 (2017).
  • Roojin Habibi, Line Guenette, Joel Lexchin, Ellen Reynolds, Mary Wiktorowicz & Barbara Mintzes. Regulating Information or Allowing Deception? Pharmaceutical Sales Visits in Canada, France and the United States. 44 JOURNAL OF LAW, MEDICINE & ETHICS 4 (2016).
  • Christopher Mayes, Ian Kerridge, Roojin Habibi & Wendy Lipworth. Conflicts of interest in neoliberal times: perspectives of Australian medical students. 25 HEALTH SOCIOLOGY REVIEW 256 (2016).
  • Steven J. Hoffman & Roojin Habibi. International legal barriers to Canada’s marijuana plans. 188 CANADIAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION JOURNAL E215 (2016).
  • Roojin Habibi. Do efficacy claims in pharmaceutical sales visits vary by approved product information or national policy? Hamilton, ON: McMaster University (2015).
  • Roojin Habibi & Joel Lexchin. Quality and quantity of information in Summary Basis of Decision Documents issued by Health Canada. 9 PLOS ONE 3: e92038 (2014).
Engaged Scholarship
  • Benjamin M. Meier (...) & Roojin Habibi. Revisiting travel restrictions amid the omicron variant: an imperative to revise global health law to reflect public health evidence (forthcoming 2022).
  • Roojin Habibi. The COVID-19 Vaccination Race. Maryland Journal for International Law (forthcoming 2022).
  • Tim Fish Hodgson, Roojin Habibi, Benjamin Mason Meier, Sharifah Sekalala, Ian Seiderman, Tomaso Falchetta, Thomas Schwarcz, Letta Tayler, Sean Tait, Gerald Staberock, and Sara (Meg) Davis. Human Rights Must Guide a Pandemic Treaty. Health and Human Rights Journal (November 2021).
  • Roojin Habibi et al. Open Letter Signed by 200 Experts to the Government of Canada: Vaccine Equity and Booster Shots. Canadian Association for Global Health (September 2021).
  • Roojin Habibi, Steven J. Hoffman & Lisa Forman. Vaccine booster nationalism is selfish and reckless. Toronto Star (August 2021).
  • Roojin Habibi, Tim Fish Hodgson, Benjamin Mason Meier, Ian Seiderman & Steven J. Hoffman. Reshaping Global Health Law in the Wake of COVID-19 to Uphold Human Rights. Opinio Juris and Health & Human Rights Journal (June 2021).
  • Roojin Habibi & Joel Lexchin. The COVID-19 Vaccination Race: Why Wealthy Countries Like Canada Must Do More to Help Poorer Ones Get Across the Finish Line. Open Canada (March 2021).
  • Roojin Habibi, Benjamin Mason Meier, Tim Fish Hodgson, Saman Zia-Zarifi, Ian Seiderman & Steven J. Hoffman. Harmonizing Global Health Law and Human Rights for Rights-Based Approaches to Global Health Emergencies. Opinio Juris (February 2021).
  • Benjamin Mason Meier, Roojin Habibi & Tony Yang. Travel restrictions violate international Law [Response to M. Chinazzi et al]. Science (March 2020).
  • Steven J. Hoffman & Roojin Habibi. Canada should not join other countries in instituting travel restrictions – or in breaking international law. Globe & Mail (February 2020).
  • Roojin Habibi. Legalizing Cannabis: The International Drug Control Regime. Inter Alia: Faculty of Common Law Student Newspaper uOttawa (March 2017).
  • Roojin Habibi. Les Canadiens méritent d'en savoir plus sur les médicaments qu'on leur prescrit. Huffington Post Québec (April 2014).
  • Roojin Habibi & Joel Lexchin. Health Canada dangerously opaque when it comes to pharmaceuticals. The Toronto Star (March 2014).
Commissioned Reports
  • Roojin Habibi et al. How Should Canada Engage in the World to Protect the Health of Canadians? Canadian International Council (CIC), Canadian Partnership for Women and Children’s Health (CanWaCH) & Global Canada (2021).
Theses
  • Roojin Habibi. Do Efficacy Claims in Pharmaceutical Sales Visits Vary by Approved Product Information or National Policy? Open Access Theses and Dissertations - McMaster University (2015)
Presentation
  • "Human Rights Principles and Guidelines for Public Health Emergency Prevention, Preparedness and Response" - Global Health Law Consortium and the International Commission of Jurists. 22 to 23 November 2021 (Co-Convenor)
  • "Vaccine Apartheid & Canada’s Role in Global Health" - LegalVoices Conference (Lincoln Alexander School of Law). 13 November 2021 (Panel Expert)
  • "Global Health Law in the Time of COVID-19: Towards Systemic Integration in International Trade Law, Human Rights Law and Global Health Law" - Canadian Council of International Law Annual Meeting. 22 October 2021 (Chair)
  • "Draft Principles on Human Rights for the Proposed Pandemic Treaty" - Open Society Foundations. 14 October 2021 (Moderator)
  • "Precarity in a Time of Global Health Crisis: Reconciling International Legal Imperatives in Public Health, Human Rights, and Solidarity" - Faculty of Law, University of Cape Town & Berkeley Center for Comparative Equality and Anti-Discrimination Law. 14 July 2021 (Keynote Address)
  • "COVID-19 & cross-border health measures: Lessons learned and critical questions for the future of the International Health Regulations" - Global Health Centre (74th World Health Assembly Side Event). 26 Mary 2021 (Panel Expert)
  • "Pandemic, Inequalities, Human Rights, and Nation States: Analyzing the Impact of Globalization and Canada’s Role" - Canadian International Council Winnipeg Branch. 15 April 2021 (Panel Expert)
  • "From Revision to Revival: Transforming the International Health Regulations for a Pandemic Resilient Future" - International Studies Association 2021 Annual Conference. 6 April 2021 (Panel Expert)
  • "The COVID-19 Vaccination Race: Roundtable Discussion on Global Access to the COVID-19 Vaccine" Maryland Journal of International Law. 2 April 2021 (Panel Expert)
  • "Foreign Policy by Canadians: Global Public Health" - Canadian International Council (CIC), Canadian Partnership for Women and Children’s Health (CanWaCH) & Global Canada. 30 March 2021 (Panel Expert)
  • "New Approaches and Lessons Learned in Inter-Governmental Pandemic Response Coordination" - American Society of International Law 2021 Annual Meeting (Reconceiving International Law: Creativity in Times of Crisis). 26 March 2021 (Panel Expert)
  • "Harnessing Global Health Law to Respond to Pandemic Threats" - Consortium of Universities for Global Health 2021 Conference. 14 March 2021 (Panel Expert)
  • "Health, Human Rights and Covid-19" - University of Toronto International Human Rights Program, and Queen’s University. 24 February 2021 (Panel Expert)
  • "Emerging into the Future: Trends in Law, Medicine and Technology Post-Pandemic" Center for Global Governance and Emerging Law. 18 February 2021 (Panel Expert)
  • "Human Rights in the Age of COVID" - The Society for International Affairs (Trinity College Dublin). 26 November 2020 (Panel Expert)
  • "The International Health Regulations: Are They Working?" O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law Colloquium. 11 November 2020 (Panel Expert)
  • "What Would Everyday Canadians Want Canada To Do? Framing the Debate for Citizens" - Canadian International Council. 9 November 2020 (Panel Expert)
  • "Article 43 of the WHO’s International Health Regulations. Consensus Conference on Global Health Law" - Stellenbosch, South Africa. 10 - 12 April 2019 (Oral Presentation and Consensus Discussion Facilitator).
  • "Health Law in Research and Practice" Queen’s Health Law Association, Kingston, Ontario. 4 March 2019 (Panel Expert)
  • "2018 Calgary Luncheon Speaker Series: Cannabis" - Canadian Global Affairs Institute. Calgary, Alberta. 30 November 2018 (Panel Expert).
  • "International legal dimensions of cannabis legalization: reconciling national priorities with international obligations" - McGill Institute for Health and Social Policy. Montreal, Québec. 26 - 27 April 2018 (Speaker).
  • "Redesigning the Leaky Pipeline in Academia: Gender Equity in the Health Research Enterprise" - Canadian Institutes of Health Research Leadership Day 2017. Ottawa, Ontario. 27 July 2017 (Speaker).
  • « La réglementation sur la visite médicale, qu’en pensez-vous? » Une étude comparant les opinions des informateurs clés sur la réglementation en matière de visite médicale en France, au Canada et aux États-Unis. Réncontres Prescrire. Paris, France. 2014 (Speaker).
  • "Do promotions by pharmaceutical sales representatives vary according to the level of clinical evidence and national policy? A research in progress" - Pharmaceutical Policy Research Collaboration Meetig. Ottawa, Ontario. 28 - 30 April 2014 (Speaker).