Queen’s University student Jennifer Dumoulin wins 2014 CBA Military Law Section’s essay contest

  • July 29, 2014

Ottawa — Jennifer Dumoulin of Ottawa, a student at the Faculty of Law at Queen’s University, is the 2014 winner of the Sword and Scale Essay Prize. The award was established by the National Military Law Section of the Canadian Bar Association (CBA) to promote and reward interest in military law topics in Canadian law schools.

Ms. Dumoulin’s essay, entitled What’s in an Act? Conduct, Context and Time, deals with direct participation in hostilities – a concept that is, in practice, more complicated that it seems at first glance.

Pascal Levesque, chair of the essay contest jury, says the essay stands out not only because it is concise and clear, but because it demonstrates Ms. Dumoulin’s complete understanding of a complex challenge in the area of international humanitarian law.

“Her work will help legal officers and military operators determine whether a particular military act can be qualified as ‘a direct participation in hostilities’ or not,” says Pascal Levesque.

In her essay, Jennifer Dumoulin examined both the position of the International Committee for the Red Cross and the principal criticisms of its guidelines, identifying both strengths and weaknesses of the Committee and its critics.

The jury noted that her work is highly pertinent for the CBA’s National Military Law Section and covers one of the more topical debates within the international humanitarian law regime.

Before entering law school, Ms. Dumoulin completed an Honours Bachelor of Arts with a major in communications and a minor in business administration, and a Master of Arts in communications at the University of Ottawa. She also has a Certificate in Public International Law from the Global Law Program at the Bader International Study Centre at Herstmonceaux Castle in the United Kingdom.

The Sword & Scale Essay Competition is an annual initiative of the CBA’s National Military Law Section. The winning paper is published in the CBA’s Sword & Scale newsletter.

The CBA is dedicated to supporting the rule of law, improvements in the law, and the administration of justice. Some 37,500 lawyers, law teachers, and law students from across Canada are members.