Katherine Lippel is a professor in the Civil Law Section of the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Law, where she has held the Canada Research Chair in Occupational Health and Safety Law since 2006. Her research has significantly advanced knowledge about the effectiveness of occupational health and safety regulation.
Her interdisciplinary work has examined not only the classical legal application of legislation designed to prevent occupational injuries and compensate for work-related disabilities, but the therapeutic and antitherapeutic consequences regulatory frameworks have on workers. Her seminal work is a 2001 SSHRC-funded study showing the effects of different compensation systems when applied to people with disabilities. Her findings have been cited by scholars and policy-makers in Canada and around the world.
Throughout her distinguished career, Lippel has examined issues such as potential systemic discrimination based not only on disability, but also on gender, ethnicity and socio-economic status; employment challenges for geographically mobile workers; doctors’ roles in worker compensation systems; and policies needed to support precariously employed workers injured on the job.
Lippel is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. In addition to her scholarly research, frequently cited in decisions by the Supreme Court of Canada and the Quebec Court of Appeal, she has spoken at many international conferences and workshops.
Since beginning to teach law in 1978, Lippel has mentored thousands of students, many of whom have gone on to leadership roles in the legal profession around the world.