Honorary awards

Emeritus Professor Edward Watson McWhinney QC

The title of Honorary Fellow of the University was conferred upon Emeritus Professor Edward Watson McWhinney QC at the Faculty of Law graduation ceremony held at 2.00pm on 21 May 2010.

Deputy Chancellor Alan Cameron and Emeritus Professor McWhinney

Deputy Chancellor Mr Alan Cameron AM conferring the honorary title upon Emeritus Professor McWhinney, photo, copyright Memento Photography.


Chancellor, I present to you Emeritus Professor Edward Watson McWhinney QC, of Vancouver Canada, for the award of Honorary Fellow of the University of Sydney.

Edward Watson McWhinney was born in Sydney on 19 May 1924. After Studying at North Sydney Boys' High School he read law at the University of Sydney, graduating with a Bachelor of Laws degree in 1949. While he was a student, Ted McWhinney as he was then known, was President of the Students Representative Council, (SRC), and also President of the Sydney University Postgraduate Representative Association (SUPRA). Subsequently he completed doctoral studies in constitutional law and in international law at Yale University.

Professor McWhinney became a truly outstanding legal academic, and held chairs at the University of Toronto, at McGill University in Montreal, at Indiana University, and of course at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver. He has been a visiting professor at very many universities, including the Sorbonne, the University of Heidelberg, the Meiji University in Tokyo, and the Hague Academy of International Law. Professor McWhinney has authored thirty books, co-authored fourteen other volumes and written very many learned articles. Professor McWhinney was also a member of the Permanent Court of Arbitration in the Hague from 1985 to 1991. In 1967, Professor McWhinney was elected to the Institut de Droit International in Geneva, and from 1999 to 2001 he served as its President. He was awarded the LLD degree (honoris causa) by the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, and the Aristotle Medal by the Government of Greece, in the Government’s words - ”for his contribution to the progress of science, free thought and intellectual development”.

Throughout his many years in Canada, Professor McWhinney has been an advisor to Canadian federal and Provincial governments, and he has served on various commissions of inquiry. From 1993 to 2000, he served two terms as a member of the Parliament of Canada as a member of the Canadian Liberal Party.

Through the Edward and Emily McWhinney Foundation, Professor McWhinney has been a strong supporter of the University of Sydney Law School. He established the Edward and Emily McWhinney Prize in International Law, and he provided philanthropic assistance to establish the Julius Stone Institute of Jurisprudence.

Chancellor, I have great pleasure in presenting for the award of Honorary Fellow of the University of Sydney, jurist and international scholar Emeritus Professor Edward Watson McWhinney.