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Special Advisor to the Dean

National Centre for Indigenous Laws


Faculty of Law

Expected start date of approximately November 15, 2022, for a two year term

Consistent with UVic’s values, we acknowledge with respect the Lkwungen-speaking peoples on whose traditional territory the university stands and the Songhees, Esquimalt and WSÁNEĆ peoples whose historical relationships with the land continue to this day.

The University of Victoria is consistently ranked in the top tier of Canada’s research-intensive universities. Vital impact drives the UVic sense of purpose. As an internationally renowned teaching and research hub, we tackle essential issues that matter to people, places and the planet. Situated in the Pacific Rim, our location breeds a profound passion for exploration. Defined by its edges, this extraordinary environment inspires us to defy boundaries, discover, and innovate in exciting ways. It’s different here, naturally and by design. We live, learn, work and explore on the edge of what’s next—for our planet and its peoples. Our commitment to research-inspired dynamic learning and vital impact make this Canada’s most extraordinary environment for discovery and innovation. Experience the edge of possibilities for yourself.

Since our founding in the mid-1970s, the Faculty of Law at the University of Victoria has sought to make a unique contribution to legal education in Canada, striving for innovation in the classroom, creativity and leadership in research, with due attention to the needs of Canada’s most marginalized communities. Home to some of Canada’s most innovative and dynamic thinkers, the Faculty of Law has created a vibrant learning environment based on a commitment to social justice, humane professionalism and civic responsibility, and critical interdisciplinary policy-oriented research and teaching. Dedicated to providing students with the skills, knowledge and judgment they will need to embark on diverse careers, UVic Law offers a rich curriculum that includes the only common-law co-operative legal education program in Canada and a diversity of experiential education opportunities. In September 2018, we welcomed the inaugural class in our path-breaking transsystemic joint degree program in Canadian Common Law and Indigenous Legal Orders (JD/JID). We are a faculty with a commitment to diversification across our ranks, particularly, although not limited to: marginalized sexualities, gender identity or expression, disability, Indigeneity and racialization. And we do all of this in Canada’s most beautiful urban paradise.

The National Centre for Indigenous Laws (NCIL) will expand and disseminate knowledge of Indigenous legal orders. It will develop methods for reasoning within those orders and for constructing the interface between Indigenous, non-state, and state-structured legal orders. It will produce world-class theoretical and substantive Indigenous legal educational resources. It will be a place where Indigenous and non-Indigenous students, leaders, community members, and professionals will learn about Indigenous laws and their interactions with other legal orders, creating the foundation for a multi-juridical Canada and world.

In this leadership role, the National Centre for Indigenous Laws (NCIL) Special Advisor to the Dean will be instrumental in the strategic development of the NCIL as a national and international centre for dialogue, research, education, and training. The Special Advisor will work collaboratively with Law faculty and staff to develop a strategy and governance model for the NCIL. This work will be guided and informed by the Faculty of Law’s strategic plan, the NCIL founding documents as well as extensive consultation and development of the objectives and goals of the NCIL.

Beginning on or about September 15, 2022 and over the course of a two-year term, the Special Advisor will assist the Faculty of Law in establishing and fostering research and academic opportunities between and with Indigenous communities and institutions in order to lay the foundation for the NCIL. In order to build the community driven focus of the NCIL, the Special Advisor will continue the work of identifying partnerships and building relationships locally, nationally and internationally. This work will contribute towards the integration of the NCIL with existing Indigenous initiatives undertaken by the Faculty and by the Indigenous Law Research Unit (ILRU), in a way that supports and expands all of our Indigenous initiatives and ILRU's capacity in public legal education and community engagement.

Working closely with the Dean and the Director, Indigenous Initiatives, the Special Advisor will engage in the development of meaningful and effective relationships and partnerships with Indigenous leadership, organizations and communities locally, nationally and internationally. They will facilitate relationships and consultation, advocate to government, participate in dialogues, and support new and ongoing partnership initiatives. The Special Advisor will also work collaboratively with Government Relations and the Vice President Indigenous to identify and foster synergies between industry, government, community and institutional partners.

The Special Advisor will work closely with the Faculty of Law and the University’s Communications departments in supporting and contributing to communications planning and communications materials for the NCIL. They will also work closely with Development in support of the NCIL’s fundraising and stewardship requirements. 


The position requires demonstrated leadership and strength in strategic development and implementation, facilitation, community engagement, project management and the ability to build stakeholder partnerships and consensus. A deep understanding of and experience with Indigenous legal orders, including an understanding of colonization, decolonization, land issues, Indigenous societies and politics, and settler/Indigenous relations, is necessary. The successful applicant will have an LL.B., J.D., B.C.L., or a graduate degree in a related field, and academic leadership experience.

This could be an excellent secondment for applicants from UVic or another institution.

Remuneration will be commensurate with educational background and experience.

Additional information

In accordance with Canadian Immigration requirements, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority. Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada are requested to self-identify themselves in their application.

Please note that reference and background checks, including credential and degree verification, may be undertaken as part of this recruitment process.

The University of Victoria requires all students, staff and faculty coming to campus to declare their COVID-19 vaccination status. Declaration is confidential and will be securely stored. New employees will be required to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 prior to beginning employment at the University of Victoria.  

Faculty and Librarians at the University of Victoria are governed by the provisions of the Collective Agreement. Members are represented by the University of Victoria Faculty Association.

Contact information

Applications, consisting of a cover letter, a curriculum vitae and the names of and contact information for three referees, should be submitted by August 19, 2022 and addressed to:

Dr. Val Napoleon
Acting Dean
Faculty of Law
University of Victoria
P.O. Box 2400, STN CSC
Victoria, BC V8W 3H7
Telephone: (250) 721-8147


Application deadline

August 19, 2022

Equity statement

UVic is committed to upholding the values of equity, diversity, and inclusion in our living, learning and work environments. In pursuit of our values, we seek members who will work respectfully and constructively with differences and across levels of power. We actively encourage applications from members of groups experiencing barriers to equity.

Read our full equity statement here:

Persons with disabilities, who anticipate needing accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, may contact Faculty Relations and Academic Administration in the Office of the VP Academic and Provost at Any personal information provided will be maintained in confidence.

The University acknowledges the potential impact that career interruptions can have on a candidate’s record of research achievement. We encourage applicants to explain in their application the impact that career interruptions have had on their record.

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