Wade Wright

Wade Wright

Academic Degrees:

Hons. B. Mus. (WLU), M.A. (Western), LL.B. (Osgoode), LL.M. (Cambridge), J.S.D. (Columbia)

Email: wwright8@uwo.ca
Phone: 519-661-2111, ext.  81560
Office: LB 111

Professor Wade Wright joined Western Law in July 2016. His primary areas of research interest are Canadian and comparative constitutional law, with a focus on federalism and extrajudicial constitutionalism. He also has active research interests in administrative law, Crown liability and law and sexuality.

Wade’s research has been published widely in edited collections and peer-reviewed journals, and presented at major conferences and workshops in both Canada and abroad. He is a co-author, with Peter W. Hogg and Patrick Monahan, of Liability of the Crown, 4th ed. (Toronto: Carswell, 2011), the leading treatise on the topic in Canada. His work has been cited often by courts across Canada, including various times by the Supreme Court of Canada. In 2019, he was awarded the Western Law Dean’s Research Fellowship, to support his research project “Democracy and Dissent in Canada’s Federal System: Lessons from the Interprovincial Pipeline Debate.” In 2021, he won Western Law’s teaching award, the Award for Teaching Excellence.

In 2020, Wade agreed to assume the authorship of Peter Hogg’s seminal Constitutional Law of Canada treatise, which is the most cited book in the decisions of the Supreme Court of Canada. In this role, Wade is responsible for preparing the yearly updates to the treatise, which is published as both a two-volume, loose-leaf book (comprising 60 chapters) and as an abridged annual student edition. His first update to the treatise will be published in 2021. 

Wade earned his doctorate in law (JSD) at Columbia Law School, with the support of a SSHRC Doctoral Fellowship and a Viscount Bennett Fellowship; his masters in law (LLM) at the University of Cambridge, with the support of a Rt. Hon. Paul Martin Sr. Scholarship; and his law degree (LLB) at Osgoode Hall Law School of York University, where he was awarded the Gold Medal (for attaining the highest standing in his graduating class) and a variety of other awards.

Prior to joining Western Law, Wade served as a law clerk for Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin at the Supreme Court of Canada, taught courses at Columbia Law School (as an Associate in Law) and Osgoode Hall Law School, and was a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Toronto. He was called to the Bar of Ontario in 2004, and before pursuing an academic career, practiced civil and public law litigation at Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP in Toronto, where he worked on cases before all levels of court, including the Supreme Court of Canada.

Wade is the Co-director of Western Law’s Public Law Research Group, and also co-organizes the annual Coxford Lecture, which is devoted to exploring the rule of law. Learn more about the work of the Public Law Research Group and the Coxford Lecture Series.

Seeking graduate students in the following areas: Constitutional law, particularly federalism and extrajudicial constitutionalism; administrative law; Crown liability; and law and sexuality.

Selected Research Highlights

Peter W. Hogg and Wade K. Wright, Constitutional Law of Canada, 5th ed. (Toronto: Thomson Reuters/Carswell, 2007+, loose-leaf version) (single author of the 2021 update) [in press].

Peter W. Hogg and Wade K. Wright, Constitutional Law of Canada, 2021 Student Edition (Toronto: Thomson Reuters, 2021) [in press].

Wade K. Wright, “Against Privileging the Charter: The Case of Federal Pre-enactment Constitutional Review” (2020-2021) 25 Rev Const Stud 49-78.

Wade K. Wright, “Canadian Federalism’s Underlying Question: What It Is and Why It Matters” (2020) 53(2) UBC Law Rev 531.

Wade K. Wright, “Provincial Non-enforcement of Constitutionally Suspect Federal Criminal Laws,” in Richard Albert, Paul Daly & Vanessa MacDonnell, eds., The Canadian Constitution in Transition (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2019).

Wade K. Wright, “Federalism(s) in the Supreme Court of Canada During the McLachlin Years,” Daniel Jutras & Marcus Moore, eds. (2018) 86 SCLR (2d) 207. (Reprinted in Daniel Jutras & Marcus Moore, eds., Canada’s Chief Justice: Beverley McLachlin’s Legacy of Law and Leadership (Markham: LexisNexis, 2018).)

Wade K. Wright, “The Political Safeguards of Canadian Federalism” (2016) 36 NJCL 1-72.

Wade K. Wright, “Courts as Facilitators of Intergovernmental Dialogue: Cooperative Federalism and Judicial Review” (2016) 72 SCLR (2d) 365-454.

Wade K. Wright, “Of Banks, Federalism and Clear Statements: Comment on Bank of Montreal v. Marcotte”, Benjamin Berger & Sonia Lawrence, eds., (2015) 71 SCLR (2d) 185-225.

Peter W. Hogg, Patrick J. Monahan & Wade K. Wright, Liability of the Crown, 4th ed. (Toronto: Carswell, 2011).

Wade K. Wright, “Facilitating Intergovernmental Dialogue: Judicial Review of the Division of Powers in the Supreme Court of Canada”, Jamie Cameron & Bruce Ryder, eds., (2010) 51 SCLR (2d) 625-693.

Peter W. Hogg, Allison A. Bushell Thornton & Wade K. Wright, “Charter Dialogue Revisited – Or Much Ado About Metaphors” (2007) 45(1) Osgoode Hall LJ 1-65.

Peter W. Hogg, Allison A. Bushell Thornton & Wade K. Wright, “Reply to Charter Dialogue Revisited” (2007) 45(1) Osgoode Hall LJ 193-202.

Wade K. Wright, “The Tide in Favour of Equality: Same-Sex Marriage in Canada and England and Wales” (2006) 20 Inter J Law Pol’y and the Family 249-285.

Peter W. Hogg & Wade K. Wright, “Canadian Federalism, the Privy Council and the Supreme Court: Reflections on the Debate About Canadian Federalism” (2005) 38(2) UBC Law Rev 329-352.