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Seminar on Personal Prejudices and Cognitive Biases [2024 Edition] by the Canadian Institute for the Administration of Justice

January 25 @ 11:00 am - 5:00 pm

Bilingual program with simultaneous interpretation
Participation in this program is approved under Section 41 (1) of the Judges Act.

Video Recording
Everyone who registered for this seminar will have access to the video recording afterwards.

Registration: This program is for judges and administrative decision-makers only. To register, please see the contact information on bottom page.

Schedule: 11:00 am – 5:00 pm (Eastern Time)


Understanding unconscious and cognitive biases is essential to promoting fair outcomes. This seminar aims to raise judges and administrative decision-makers’ awareness of prejudices and biases and to prevent them from having an impact on their decisions.

The program aims to provide participants with tools to recognize personal prejudices and cognitive biases in the decision-making process, help judges and administrative decision-makers to address these biases, and encourage them to suspend their judgment and maintain deliberative engagement from beginning to end of the decision-making process.

Several strategies are offered in this training, including checklists to detect biases, decision-making matrices, and breakdowns, sequencing the reception of information in a manner that reduces the effects of biases, and considering an outside view in evaluating the facts and law.

Topics Overview

  • What are personal prejudices and cognitive biases and why should adjudicators care about them?
  • How does the decision-making process unfold?
  • What are the instances in which prejudices and biases present themselves in the decision-making process?
  • How can we reduce the influence of prejudices and biases on adjudicators?


  • The Honourable Justice Peter Lauwers, Court of Appeal for Ontario
  • The Honourable Justice James W. O’Reilly, Federal Court, CIAJ’s Past President
  • The Honourable Justice Daniel W. Payette, Superior Court of Québec


  • The Honourable Justice Azim Hussain, Superior Court of Quebec
  • The Honourable Justice Peter Lauwers, Court of Appeal for Ontario
  • Dr. Toni Schmader, PhD, Professor, Department of Psychology, University of British Columbia
  • The Honourable Justice Palbinder Kaur Shergill, Supreme Court of British Columbia
  • Kathryn M. Stanchi, E.L. Cord Foundation Professor of Law, William S. Boyd School of Law, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
  • The Honourable Chief Justice Michael Tulloch, Court of Appeal for Ontario


Please contact the Project Manager of Judicial Programs, Vicki Gondek
Tel.: 514-731-2855, extension 6

Cancellation Policy:

  • 30 days or more before the event: Administration fees of $40
  • 7 days or more before the event: 50% of registration fees
  • Less than 7 days before the event: No refund

At any time, a participant may be replaced by another person without charge


January 25
11:00 am - 5:00 pm
Event Category: