François Crépeau

Full Professor
Hans & Tamar Oppenheimer Chair in Public International Law

New Chancellor Day Hall
3644 Peel Street
Room 606
Montreal, Quebec
Canada H3A 1W9

514-398-2961 [Office]
francois.crepeau [at] (Email)

François Crépeau. Photo par Lysanne Larose.


François Crépeau, O.C., O.Q., F.R.S.C., Dr.h.c. Clermont-Auvergne, Trudeau Fellow 2008, Ad.E., is Full Professor and the Hans & Tamar Oppenheimer Chair in Public International Law, at the Faculty of Law of McGill University. He was the Director of the McGill Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism from 2015 to 2020. 

Professor Crépeau is a member of the Scientific Committee of the Agency for Fundamental Rights of the European Union, and the Chair of the Thematic Working Group: Migrant Rights and Integrations in Host Communities, KNOMAD – Global Knowledge Partnership on Migration and Development, World Bank Group, Washington, DC. He is a member of several editorial boards: Journal of Refugee Studies, Refuge, Droits fondamentaux, European Journal of Human Rights, Inter Gentes – McGill Journal of International Law & Legal Pluralism. He was a member of the Advisory Committee of the International Migration Initiative of the Open Society Foundations (NY) (2017-2021) and a member of the Board of Directors of the International Bureau for Children’s Rights (Montreal) (2018-2021). 

He was guest professor at Université catholique de Louvain (yearly, 2010-2020). He was the 2017-2018 International Francqui Professor Chair at Université catholique de Louvain, in collaboration with six other Belgian universities (Université de Liège, Antwerp University, Université libre de Bruxelles, Université Saint-Louis, Ghent University, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven). He was the 2016-2017 Robert F. Drinan, S.J. Visiting Professor of Human Rights Chair at Georgetown University (Washington, DC). He has also been guest professor at the following institutions :  Centre de recherches sur les droits de l’homme, Université de Paris Panthéon-Assas (2018), Institut international des droits de l’homme (Strasbourg) (2001, 2002, 2007, 2008, 2015) ; Graduate Institute for International Studies (IUHEI-Genève, 2007), Institut des hautes études internationales, Université de Paris II (2002), Université d’Auvergne-Clermont 1 (1997). 

Professor Crépeau was the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants from 2011 to 2017. In this capacity, he has conducted official visits to Albania, Tunisia, Turkey, Italy, Greece, Qatar, Sri Lanka, Malta, the European institutions in Brussels and Vienna, Angola, Australia and Nauru. He has also produced several thematic reports: the detention of migrants, the protection of migrants’ rights at the external borders of the European Union, climate change and migration, global migration governance, labour exploitation of migrants, labour recruitment practices, trade agreements and migration. He was the Chair of the Coordination Committee of the United Nations Human Rights Procedures (2014-2015). 

Professor Crépeau is an Officer of the Order of Canada (2017), an Officer of the Order of Quebec (2022), a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada (2012), a Fellow of the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation (2008-2011), a Doctor Honoris Causa from the Université de Clermont-Auvergne (France, 2018), and an Advocatus Emeritus (Ad.E.) of the Quebec Bar Association (2013). 

He has given many conferences, published numerous articles, and written, edited or coedited ten books:  

  1. Research Handbook on Climate Change, Migration and the Law (2017);
  2. Human Rights & Diverse Societies (2014);
  3. Terrorism, Law and Democracy: 10 Years after 9/11 – Terrorisme, Droit et Démocratie : 10 ans après le 11 septembre 2001 (2012);
  4. Recueil de droit des réfugiés: Instruments, Jurisprudences et Documents (The Refugee Law Reader) (1re éd. 2010, 2e éd. 2012);
  5. Les migrations internationales contemporaines – Une dynamique complexe au cœur de la globalisation (2009);
  6. Penser l’international, Perspectives et contributions des sciences sociales (2007);
  7. Forced Migration and Global Processes – A View from Forced Migration Studies (2006);
  8. Les juridictions internationales: complémentarité ou concurrence? (2005);
  9. Mondialisation des échanges et fonctions de l’État (1997);
  10. Droit d’asile : De l’hospitalité aux contrôles migratoires (1995). 

From 2001 to 2008, Professor Crépeau was a professor at Université de Montréal, holder of the Canada Research Chair in International Migration Law, and founding director of the Centre d’études et de recherches internationales de l’Université de Montréal (CÉRIUM). From 1990 to 2001, he was a professor at Université du Québec à Montréal. 

Until 2011, Professor Crépeau also sat on the Quebec Law Society’s Committee on Human Rights and Committee on Citizenship and Immigration, was the “Justice, Police and Security” domain coordinator for the Quebec Metropolis Centre, and was a member of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO. He served as vice-president of the Canadian Human Rights Foundation (now Equitas) (1992-2004) and director of the Revue québécoise de droit international (1996-2004). He participated in observer missions in the occupied Palestinian territories (2002) and in El Salvador (1991). 

Professor Crépeau holds degrees from McGill University (BCL and LLB), Bordeaux University (DEUG and Licence in law, Master’s in private law), Paris II University (DEA in legal sociology) and Paris I University (Ph.D. in law). 

He is always interested in supervising graduate research on international, comparative and domestic legal issues relating to: 

  • The rights and freedoms of refugees, asylum seekers, migrants, migrant workers, and persons belonging to minorities 

  • Migration and refugee policies at local, national, regional or universal level 

  • Diversity and multiculturalism policies 

  • Globalization, governance and human rights 

Recent Academic Publications 

  • CRÉPEAU, François, “Migration Law and Policy on the Road to Redemption: Hostile Identity Politics v. Individual Rights and Socioeconomic Benefits”, Foreword to: Jean-Yves Carlier, Marie-Claire Foblets, Law and Migration in a Changing World, General Report of the 2014 Vienna Congress of the International Academy of Comparative Law, Basel (CH): Springer International Publishers, 2022, pp v-xii. 

  • CRÉPEAU, François, « ‘Accroche ta charrue à une étoile’ – Une perspective à long terme sur la mobilité humaine », in : FLEURY-GRAFF, Thibaut, JACOB Patrick, Migrations et droit international, Colloque 2021 de la Société française de droit international, en collaboration avec le Projet RefWar (ANR 2019-2023), Paris : Éditions Pedone, 2022, pp 573-584. 

Recent Communications 

  • 2022.10.24: “Migration Governance and Human Rights: Toward long-term strategic ‘facilitation’ of mobility”, Keynote opening presentation, 10th Online Course on International Migration Law, organised by the Department of International Refugee Law and Migration Law of the International Institute of Humanitarian Law, in collaboration with the International Organization for Migration, 24 October - 18 November 2022. (Videoconference) 

  • 2022.10.20 : « Au cœur de l’action humanitaire: Droit international des droits de l’homme et migration”, Cours (3h) au sein du Diplôme d’université ‘Aide humanitaire et internationale’, organisé par l’Institut francophone pour la justice et la démocratie – Institut Louis Joinet et le Collège Études Européennes et Internationales de l’Université de Pau et des Pays de l’Adour, Bayonne, Automne 2022 – Hiver 2023. (Videoconference) 

  • 2022.10.12-13: “Les standards internationaux relatifs à la migration”, Atelier de formation (7h) organisé par l’Observatoire national de la migration de Tunisie et l’Organisation internationale pour les migrations en Tunisie, Hotel Novotel, Tunis. 

  • 2022.09.30: “Inclusive Migration Policies would be more Democratic”, presentation at: “How Can We Reverse Democratic Backsliding?”, A workshop/conference co-hosted by the Canadian International Council, McGill University and Toronto Metropolitan University, Thomson House, McGill University, 29-30 September 2022. 

  • 2022.09.29: “Facilitating Human Mobility and Banking on the Agency of Migrants”, Presentation at the workshop on “Human Rights and Selective Agency”, organised by the Van Vollenhoven Institute for Law, Governance & Society, Leiden University, NL, and the McGill Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism, Faculty of Law, McGill University, 28-29 September 2022. 

  • 2022.09.20: “The normative framework for fair recruitment and the Global Compact on Migration”, Panel presentation (with Ryszard Cholewinski, Senior Migration Specialist, ILO’s Regional Office for Arab States, Beirut, and Anna Torriente, Senior Legal Officer, ILO, Geneva), in “E-Learning on Fair Recruitment Processes for Practitioners”, a training seminar organised by the International Training Centre of the International Labour Organisation (Torino, IT), 12 September – 21 October 2022 (Videoconference). 

Recent interviews and media interventions 

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