Research and writing

My accomplishments

Key areas of focus

I have concentrated most of my research and writing on five main areas. These are:

  • Law of evidence
  • Substantive criminal law and the criminal justice process
  • Animal law
  • Legal education
  • Constitutional law
Evidence law

My most significant and long-running interest relates to the law of evidence, in all its forms.

My recent research concentrates on two issues in particular: the validity of various hearsay reforms, and a concern about the “principled” approach to evidentiary admissibility, where I have attempted to question the argument that this approach automatically leads to better and more accurate decision making.

In this area, I advocate the need for long-term study of results and periodic review of theoretical foundations to ensure that the “principle” continues to remain an important aspect of the discretionary exercise.

Writing and researching

I have been writing books and publishing articles on a variety of law subjects since 1996 and have been honoured to have some of my work published in numerous of the world’s most distinguished journals including the Queen’s Law Journal, the University of British Columbia Law Review, the Criminal Law Quarterly, the New Zealand Law Review and the Animal Law Review.

I am also the author, co-author or co-editor of various books, including:

Witnesses (1991-current)

Canada’s leading treatise on the substantive, evidentiary and procedural law relating to witnesses.

Animal Law in Australasia: Continuing the Dialogue (2013)

An entirely revised edition covering new issues concerning the treatment of animals under the law.

Canadian Perspectives on Animals and the Law (2015)

The first collection of essays ever produced in Canada to explore the legal relationship between animals and humans.

Manning, Mewett and Sankoff on Criminal Law (4th ed. 2009, 5th ed. 2015)

A thorough treatise on Canadian criminal law

Portable Guide to Witnesses (1st ed. 2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014)

A condensed version of the larger work to be used by practitioners in court.

Evidence Act Revisited for Criminal Lawyers (New Zealand, 2010)

A comprehensive monograph analyzing the first two years of jurisprudence decided under the Evidence Act 2006.

Animal Law in Australasia: A New Dialogue (2009)

The first scholarly treatise on animal law published in the Southern Hemisphere.

Canadian Encyclopedic Digest (2011)

Evidence for Thomson Reuters Canada.

Celebrating the release of Animals and the Law with Katie Sykes and Justice Louis LeBel in Toronto (2015).
Michael Kirby, Bruce Wagman (ALDF) and Steven White join me at the Australian book launch of Animal Law in Australasia.
Australian Launch of Animal Law in Australasia with High Court judge Michael Kirby, Voiceless CEO Brian Sherman, Co-editor Steven White and Voiceless Counsel Katrina Sharman.

Roles of responsibility

I hold editorial or advisory board positions of the following journals:

  • Canadian Criminal Law Review
  • Journal of Animal Law and Natural Resources, Michigan State
  • Global Journal of Animal Law, Abo Akademi University, Finland