Hāki Chambers Global

Joel Bakan

Executive Summary

Joel Bakan is professor of law at the University of British Columbia and an internationally renowned legal scholar and commentator.

Joel has worked on landmark Canadian legal cases and has contributed to the development of government policy in the areas of human rights, constitutional law and labour law reform.

His critically acclaimed book, The Corporation: The Pathological Pursuit of Profit and Power (2004), was published in over 20 languages and became a bestseller in several countries. He also wrote and co-created (with Mark Achbar) a feature documentary film, The Corporation, based on the book. A critical and box office success, the film won numerous awards, including best foreign documentary at the Sundance Film Festival.

The New Corporation is an award-winning sequel film, written by Joel, co-directed with Jennifer Abbott, and based on Joel’s book of the same title. Joel was nominated for awards for documentary directing and writing at the 2021 Canadian Screen Awards, and the book has won several awards and been translated.

Joel’s scholarly work includes Just Words: Constitutional Rights and Social Wrongs (1997), as well as textbooks, edited collections, and numerous articles in leading legal and social science journals. His award-winning book, Childhood Under Siege: How Big Business Targets Children (2012), has been translated into several languages.

Joel was a Rhodes Scholar and law clerk to former Chief Justice Brian Dickson of the Supreme Court of Canada.


B.A., Simon Fraser University
B.A. (Jur.), University of Oxford (as a Rhodes Scholar)
LL.B., Dalhousie University
LL.M., Harvard Law School

Selected Awards & Recognition

Teaching Release Award, Public Humanities Hub, UBC, Spring, 2020
President’s Award for Public Education Through Media, UBC, 2017
Writing Residency, Bellagio Center, Rockefeller Foundation, 2017
Outstanding Alumni Award, Simon Fraser University, 2012
Teaching Excellence Award, UBC, 1991, 1996, 2007 (nominee)
Academic of the Year – Confederation of University Faculty Associations of BC, 2004