Marie-France Fortin is a doctoral candidate in legal studies at the University of Cambridge. Her doctoral proposal, under the supervision of Professor John Allison and Trudeau Fellow Jean Leclair (Université de Montréal, deals with the abolition of the doctrine of state immunity as a means to align the law with the democratic principle and provide better protection for citizens' rights and greater transparency and efficiency in state activities.
Marie-France completed a Bachelor of Law (LL.B.) at the Université Laval in 2006, where she topped the Dean's List for her cohort. She participated in an exchange program with the Université de Paris II, Panthéon-Assas, earning the distinction of "international profile" on her LL.B. diploma. She also has a Master of International Law (LL.M.i.) from the University of Cambridge (Queens' College) in 2009, supported by the prestigious Right Honourable Paul Martin Senior scholarship, and a Master of Constitutional Law and Federalism (LL.M.) from Harvard Law School, where she received the renowned Frank Knox Memorial Fellowship in 2010.
Marie-France has a long-standing interest in research: as a student at the Université Laval, she was a research assistant for Professor Marie-Claire Belleau and, as part of a university internship, for the constitutional law department at the Quebec Ministry of Justice, before serving as a law clerk for the Honourable Morris J. Fish at the Supreme Court of Canada from 2007 to 2008.
Named Special Fulbright Canada Fellow by the Fulbright Foundation of Canada for her leadership and academic ambassadorship, Marie-France worked as a legal advisor in the Public Law Sector of the Department of Justice of Canada when she returned to Canada in 2010. She then worked as a litigation lawyer in one of the largest Canadian law firms and as a legal advisor for the Autorité des marchés financiers (the securities regulator for the province of Quebec), where she contributed her expertise in public and constitutional law and in state immunity to several major projects.