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Pnina Alon-Shenker, Associate Professor

Pnina Alon-Shenker

Associate Professor
DepartmentFaculty of Law, Department of Law & Business at the Ted Rogers School of Management
Areas of ExpertiseEmployment law; labour law; human rights; workplace discrimination; diversity at work

Pnina Alon-Shenker is an associate professor in the Faculty of Law, and the Ted Rogers School of Management (TRSM) in the Department of Law & Business, and she is the founding academic director of Ryerson Law & Business Clinic. She served as a law clerk to the Honourable Justice Dalia Dorner of the Supreme Court of Israel in 2002-2003 and was called to the Israeli Bar in 2003. She earned her LL.B. from Haifa University, LL.M. from the Hebrew University and University of Toronto, and S.J.D from University of Toronto. She joined Ryerson as a sessional instructor in 2009 and as an assistant professor in 2010.

Alon-Shenker’s research interests centre on labour and employment law with an emphasis on workplace discrimination and diversity, the aging workforce, and forms of employee representation and voice. Her research advances an innovative critique of contemporary legal analyses of age discrimination in the workplace and develops a new paradigm, founded in legal and philosophical theories of equality, which better articulates the wrongs associated with age discrimination in the workplace. This research also has significant practical implications for topical legal challenges faced by the aging workforce such as the duty to accommodate senior workers, mandatory retirement and cost-based defence claims. Her recent research projects expand to issues of diversity at work, intergenerational equity, and age & intersectionality. 

Alon-Shenker received the Dean’s Scholarly, Research and Creative Activity Award in 2014 for her scholarly achievements. In 2016, she received the Provost's Experiential Teaching Award in recognition of her work to develop and lead the Ryerson Law & Business Clinic. Alon-Shenker is also the co-editor-in-chief of International Journal of Comparative Labour Law and Industrial Relations, external link, and a member of the Labour Law Casebook Group co-editing the Labour and Employment Law: Cases, Material, and Commentary, external link (Irwin Law).

Publications

"Do Trade Unions Promote Age Diversity and Intergenerational Solidarity in the Workplace? A View from Canada and Israel" (2019) 70(2) Labor Law Journal 103-118 (with Lilach Lurie)

"Capabilities and Age Discrimination", external link, opens in new window, in Brian Langille, ed., The Capability Approach to Labour Law (Oxford University Press, 2019), Ch 13, pp 268-289

"Management Consultants and the Employees of their Client Organizations: Towards a Model of Employee Protection, external link, opens in new window" (2018) 21:1 Canadian Labour & Employment Law Journal 117-172

"Out of the Closet and Up the Ladder? Diversity in Ontario's Big Law Firms, external link, opens in new window"(2017) 34:2 Windsor Yearbook of Access to Justice 40-72 (with Asher Alkoby)

"Legal Barriers to Age Discrimination in Hiring Complaints, external link, opens in new window" (2016) 39:1 Dalhousie Law Journal 289-325

"Organizing: Should the Employer have a Say?, external link, opens in new window" (2016) 17:1 Theoretical Inquiries in Law 63-100 (with Guy Davidov)

"Law Firm Partners and the Scope of Labour Laws, external link, opens in new window" (2015) 4:2 Canadian Journal of Human Rights 211-235 (with Brian Langille)

"Ending Mandatory Retirement: Reassessment, external link, opens in new window" (2014) 35 Windsor Review of Legal and Social Issues 22-53

"Nonhiring and Dismissal of Senior Workers: Is it all about the Money?, external link, opens in new window" (2014) 35:2 Comparative Labor Law and Policy Journal 159-190

"Applying the Principle of Proportionality in Employment and Labour Law Contexts, external link, opens in new window" (2013) 59:2 McGill Law Journal 375-424 (with Guy Davidov)

"‘Age is Different’: Revisiting the Contemporary Understanding of Age Discrimination in the Employment Setting, external link, opens in new window" (2013) 17:1 Canadian Labour & Employment Law Journal 31-63

"The Duty to Accommodate Senior Workers: Its Nature, Scope and Limitations, external link, opens in new window"(2012) 38:1 Queen’s Law Journal 165-208

"The Unequal Right to Age Equality: Towards a Dignified Lives Approach to Age Discrimination, external link, opens in new window" (2012) 25:2 Canadian Journal of Law and Jurisprudence 243-282

Conference and Workshop Presentations (Selected)

“Intersecting Age and Gender in Workplace Discrimination Complaints”, Labour Law Research Network (LLRN) Conference, Val Paraiso, Chile, June 2019 (with Therese MacDermott).

“Towards a Diversity Approach to Equality at Work: The Case of Age Diversity”, Labour Law Research Network (LLRN) Conference, Toronto, June 2017.

“Lean Consulting Firms and Labour Law”, Canadian Industrial Relations Association (CIRA) Conference, Saskatoon, June 2016.

“Diversity in the Legal Profession: The LGBTQ Experience”, The 15th Jerusalem Conference in Canadian Studies, May 2016 (with Asher Alkoby).

“Lean Consulting and Labour Law”, Labour Law Research Network (LLRN) Conference, Amsterdam, June 2015.

“Organizing: Should the Employer have a Say?” in Intentional Workshop: Organizing and the Law, Tel Aviv University Faculty of Law, January 2015 (with Guy Davidov).

“Tackling Senior Workers’ Challenges to Re-employment: Does Anti- Age Discrimination Law Provide an Adequate Response?” in International Workshop: Too Young to Retire – Too Old to Work, The Pension Planning and Socio-Economic Security Program, Tel-Aviv University and the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung Foundation, October 2013.

“Applying the Principle of Proportionality in Employment and Labour Law Contexts”, Labour Law Research Network (LLRN) Conference, Barcelona, June 2013.

“Non-hiring and Dismissal of Senior Workers: Is it all about the Money?”, Canadian Industrial Relations Association (CIRA) Conference: From Theory and Research to Policy and Practice in Work and Employment, Toronto, May 2013.

“Age is Different”: Revisiting the Contemporary Understanding of Age Discrimination in the Employment Setting, Shades of Grey: Law and Aging in the Contemporary Workplace Conference, Queen’s University Law School, April 2012.

“To Abolish Mandatory Retirement or not to Abolish Mandatory Retirement – Is that the Question?” International Workshop on “Increased Longevity and its Impact on Retirement Patterns and on the Economic and Social Well-Being of the Pensioners”, Tel Aviv University, Faculty of Social Sciences, May 2011.

Provost's Experiential Teaching Award, Ryerson University (2016)

Deans’ Scholarly, Research and Creative Activity Award (2014)

The Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Scholarship (SSHRC) (2008-2009)

Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS) (2007-2008; waived in 2008-2009)

Naomi Overend Fellowship in Human Rights (2006-2007)

Connaught Scholarship, the School of Graduate Studies, University of Toronto, for International Graduate Students with Outstanding Records (2005-2006, 2006-2007, 2007-2008)

University of Toronto Fellowship (2004-2005, 2006-2007, 2007-2008, 2009)
World Fellowship Grant and Extension Grant, the Delta Kappa Gamma Society International (2005-2006, 2006-2007, 2007-2008)

Degree Institution Year
SJD (Doctor of Juridical Science) University of Toronto 2010
LLM (Master of Laws) University of Toronto 2005
LLM (Master of Laws) cum laude Hebrew University (Israel) 2003
LLB (Bachelor of Laws) summa cum laude Haifa University (Israel) 2001