Jacob Weinrib is an Associate Professor at the Queen’s Faculty of Law.  He graduated from the Combined JD/PhD Program in Law and Philosophy at the University of Toronto, where he studied as a Vanier Scholar and received the David Savan Dissertation Prize.  Before joining Queen’s Law, he held a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship at the New York University School of Law as a Global Hauser Research Fellow in the Center for Constitutional Transitions (2013-4) and as a Dworkin-Balzan Fellow in the Center for Law and Philosophy (2014-2015).  Weinrib is the author of Dimensions of Dignity: The Theory and Practice of Modern Constitutional Law (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2016).  He is currently working on two major projects.  The first, which is supported by a SSHRC Insight Development Grant, formulates a rights-based account of the theoretical foundations of administrative law.  The second is a short book entitled Rights, Limits, and Proportionality: A Short Guide for the Perplexed (under contract with Cambridge University Press).  Weinrib was the 2018-2019 recipient of the Corbett Award for Teaching Excellence.   


Weinrib’s research lies at the intersection of legal philosophy and public law.  His overarching aim is to formulate a unified theory of the normative, institutional, and doctrinal dimensions of public law.

Recent Publications


Dimensions of Dignity: The Theory and Practice of Modern Constitutional Law (Cambridge University Press, Cambridge Studies in Constitutional Law series, 2016). [Amazon] [Cambridge]

TRS Allan, (2018) 68.2 University of Toronto Law Journal 312.
Pavlos Eleftheriadis, “In Defence of Constitutional Law,” (2018) 81.1 Modern Law Review 154.
AEM Leijten, (2017) 4 Tijdschrift voor Constitutioneel Recht 346 
Book Symposium, (2020) 11:2 Jurisprudence 243  

Articles and Book Chapters<

  • “Maitland's Challenge to Administrative Legal Theory” (2021) 84:2 Modern Law Review 207-229 [SSRN]
  • “The Frank Dissent’s Charter Framework: The Rhetoric and the Reality” (2021) 100 Supreme Court Law Review 85-103 [SSRN]
  • “Dignity’s Constitution: A Reply” (2020) 11(2) Jurisprudence 298-398 (symposium on Dimensions of Dignity) [SSRN]
  • “Dignity and Autonomy” in Rainer Grote, Frauke Lachenmann, and Rüdiger Wolfrum (eds) Max Planck Encyclopedia of Comparative Constitutional Law (Oxford: Oxford University Press) [SSRN]
  • “Rights in Search of Protection” (2020) 40 Oxford Journal of Legal Studies 403-423 [SSRN]
  • “Sovereignty as a Right and as a Duty” in Claire Finkelstein and Michael Skerker (eds) Sovereignty and the New Executive Authority (Oxford: University Press, forthcoming). [SSRN] [Academia.edu]
  • “The Principles of Constitutional Reform” (2019) 24(4) (Special Issue on Kant and Law) Kantian Review 631-651 [SSRN][Academia.edu]
  • “Human Dignity and its Critics” in Jacobsohn and Schor, eds, Comparative Constitutional Theory (Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, 2018) 167-186 [SSRN] [Academia.edu]
  • “When Trumps Clash: Dworkin and the Doctrine of Proportionality” (2017) 30 Ratio Juris 341-352  [SSRN][Academia.edu]
    [This article has been translated into Spanish: “Cuando las cartas del triunfo chocan: Dworkin y la Doctrina de la Proporcionalidad” in Marcelo Alegre, ed, El imperio de Ronald Dworkin: ensayos de filosofía moral, política y jurídica (Buenos Aires: Departamento de Publicaciones, Facultad de Derecho Universidad de Buenos Aires, 2019) 175-186 [Academia.edu]]
  • “Authority, Justice, and Public Law: A Unified Theory” (2014) 64 University of Toronto Law Journal 703-735 [SSRN] [Academia.edu]
  • “The Modern Constitutional State: A Defense” (2014) 40 Queen’s Law Journal 165-212 [SSRN] cited in R. v. C.P. 2021 SCC 19 at para 116
  • “What can Kant Teach us about Legal Classification?” (2010) 23:1 Canadian Journal of Law and Jurisprudence 203 [SSRN]
  • “What is the Purpose of Freedom of Expression?” (2009) 67 U.T. Fac. L. Rev. 165, cited in Toronto (City) v. Ontario (Attorney General) 2021 SCC 34 at paras 128, 156
  • “Kant on Citizenship” (2008) 33 Australian Journal of Legal Philosophy 1 [SSRN] (winner of Australian Society of Legal Philosophy Essay Prize)
  • “The Juridical Significance of Kant’s ‘Supposed Right to Lie’” (2008) 13:1 Kantian Review 141-170 [SSRN]

In Progress

  • “What is Purposive Interpretation?”
  • Rights, Limits, and Proportionality: A Short Guide for the Perplexed (under contract with Cambridge University Press)