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Elise Groulx Diggs
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Elise is intent on increasing her mediation practice in the field of BHR focusing on inter- corporations, multi-party conflicts relative to labor, environmental and human rights issues.

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Investor-State Mediation
IMI Certified Mediator
Canada, France, United States
Business, Community, Environment, International, Labour, Social
English, Spanish, French
Facilitative, Transformative
IFCM - Institut Français de Certification des Médiateurs
Mediation Profile

I am qualified as a mediator by the Institut Français de Certification de Médiation (IFCM) (Paris, France) and certified by the International Mediation Institute (IMI) (The Hague, Netherlands).

I am an experienced criminal defence attorney and international human rights lawyer who has employed mediation tools over several decades in a variety of fields, including criminal law; conducting hundreds of negotiations with police and state agencies; involved in treaty negotiations at the United Nations for many years; learning to work with civil society while creating and leading two international legal associations (NGOs); and currently practicing in the emerging field of business and human rights.

My current mediation practice is focused on dispute resolution in the field of business sustainability and human rights. One focus is to create safe space for corporations to engage with communities and workers in order to resolve disputes, mitigate negative impacts and build a “social license to operate.” The tools of mediation provide creative and flexible methods of bringing opposing parties to the table and giving stakeholders a voice.

The emerging landscape of business and human rights offers a promising opportunity to widen the scope of commercial dispute resolution and mediation. Such development would reduce “social and environmental risks” for businesses, investors and financial institutions. I am very involved with other like-minded players (individuals and institutions) in pushing this agenda.

I am also a member of the Paris Bar in France and of the Québec Bar Association in Canada, and a licensed legal consultant in New York State. I am currently an associate tenant at Doughty Street Chambers in London (UK) and Co-Director of a Program on Lawyers and Business and Human Rights at Georgetown University Law Center for Ethics & the Legal Profession, Washington, DC. I am also Of Counsel at Cabinet Alkyne (Paris, France) and Of Counsel at Cabinet Gene & Kebe (Dakar, Sénégal).

As an experienced international human rights lawyer and former civil society/NGO leader, I have mediated conflicts involving a wide range of subjects and situations. The mediations successfully addressed a variety of labour and work related issues such as resolving personal and family conflicts, as well as rifts between lawyers and other professionals working together and redressing relationships among work colleagues

At the level of complex negotiations around the United Nations, I resolved disputes between collaborating organizations, governmental agencies, and lawyers of different nationalities and legal cultures. I also lead mediations bringing together interest groups from different backgrounds and countries, all of which required dealing with complex subject matters, a broad range of personalities and perspectives in numerous challenging circumstances.

18 February 2021 received the title of "Elite Global market leaders" :

Commentaires on Doughty Street Chambers website: 

Regarded as"an innovator" and "a top expert in the field" by sources, Elise Groulx Diggs, Ad E of Doughty Street Chambers attracts praise for her "unflagging commitment to business and human rights."The Washington, DC-based practitioneradvises NGOs, governmental bodies and corporations on human rights due diligence, legislation drafting and the development of frameworks for policy implementation. Groulx Diggs is also active in various research projects designed to promote corporate social responsibility and tackle issues of modern slavery. She is picked out for her expertise on the French Duty of Vigilance law. Another interviewee says: "She is extraordinarily knowledgeable about the multiple forms of hard and soft law across the world that relates to business and human rights. She also has an extraordinary network of contacts in the public and private sector that give her unparalleled access to thought leaders around the globe. » 

She is working on several projects to promote and increase the use of mediation and facilitate dialogue building in the context of supply chain, big foot print projects and environmental disasters with human rights components.



I favour a facilitative and transformative approach. I take great care to establish a fair process and ensuring perception of fairness by all parties. This is key to establishing the credibility of the mediation as a legitimate tool to resolve the conflict in the short term but also over the long term.

I engage in the process to ensure that all parties are heard, their needs recognized and addressed to enable a continued participation. I look for creativity when facing challenges in the international public sector and in disputes involving international business.

Strong leadership skills and a resilient personality who never gives up.  Conveying the positive role of mediation – key in reducing tensions. Recognised for being truly independent; demonstrating impartiality and neutrality from the outset to guarantee the long-term success of the mediation process.

Dynamic personality with sound judgment pivotal to help provide solutions in a number of mediations. Time and costs conscious while looking for results in a proces the parites feel they control.

Important features since the parties often express strong positions and assertive opinions about what they want, what they think are their “rights” and what they believe the resolution should bring to their side. Strong listening skills enabling me to creating a safe space leading to a lively discussion and helping to understand the issues at hand both quickly and thoroughly. Favourable to using meetings “one on one” or caucuses as much as possible to capture what the parties need and how they want to resolve the dispute. Patient and generous with my time in order to arrive at a solution agreeable to all, in a reasonable time. Strength in bringing people/ organisations and groups together and creating strong partnerships.

Human Rights, International affairs, Government agencies, NGOs, Labour Rights, Communities and Business, Environment and business and communities. Help lawyers and other professionals deal  with conflicts of interest and other complex issues, learning to work together across cultural and other boundaries including matters of ethics. Also competent to deal with civil, commercial and bilateral investment treaties, international public law, peace, treaties and a wide array of issues in the field of dispute resolution.

May vary depending on the type and length of mediation. I usually work at an hourly rate but willing to accept a daily rate. My fees will vary according both to the type of mediation, the resources of the parties the context, including the geography. I am flexible and open to discuss fees that are acceptable to all concerned.

  • Associated Tenant Doughty Street Chambers (London, UK)
  • Licensed as a lawyer by the Québec Bar Association
  • Licensed as a lawyer by the Paris Bar Association
  • Licensed legal consultant by the New York Bar Association
  • Co-Director Program Lawyers, Business and Human Rights, Georgetown Univ. Law Center Ethics & the Legal Profession (Washington, DC, USA) 
  • American Bar Association Foundation
  • Accredited mediator - Quebec Bar Association
  • Accredited mediator France-Québec panel 
  • Certified by the Institut Français de Certification des Médiateurs (IFCM)
  • Certified Mediator with the International Mediation Institute (IMI)
  • Convenor of the ABA Center for Human Rights Business and Human Rights Advisory Board Project
  • Vice-Chair of the International Bar Association, Business and Human Rights Committee
  • Founding member of Cercle K2 and member of Cercle K2 ethical committee (Paris, France)
  • International Women Forum (Chapter of Washington, DC).
Training and Education

I was trained as a mediator in Montréal, Canada, by my Bar Association, the Québec Bar Association. I was formally accredited by the Québec Bar Association. I am also an accredited member of the France-Quebec panel of mediators. I followed additional training with the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) in Paris. I am qualified as a mediator by the Institut Français de certification de médiation (IFCM) (Paris, France).


I have done a lot of teaching in international law, leading seminars and coaching lawyers in a number of countries (Canada, USA, The Hague, Netherlands, France, Paris, Mexico, Dakar in Senegal). I have also mentored lawyers and continue to do so on a regular basis throughout my whole career. I have not yet conducted training in mediation.

  • Modern Slavery in our Lives, New Jersey Coalition Against Human Trafficking (20/09/2018)
    Elise is keynote speaker of the conference "Modern Slavery In Our Lives" held by the New Jersey Coalition Against Human Trafficking on Thursday September 18th from 2 to 4:30 PM at the Bethany Hall of Seton Hall University (400 West South Orange Avenue South Orange, NJ, 07079 United States). This event is live streamed on the Coalition Facebook page.
  • National television interview "To End Slavery" (24/08/2018)
    Elise answers (in French) to journalist Anne-Marie Dussault's questions on the television channel ICI-Radio-Canada and provides her expertise "To End Slavery" ("Pour en finir avec l'esclavage").
  • Fighting Modern Slavery: Interview with Elise Groulx (13/06/2018)
    Elise participated in a major interview published in Impakter in which she situates the issue of modern slavery in the context of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
  • Business and Human Rights Roundtable with Kevin Hyland OBE (UK Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner) (30/04/2018)
    Elise speaks on the "Business and Human Rights Roundtable with Kevin Hyland OBE (UK Independent Anti-Slavery Commissioner)" on 30th of April 2018 at 6PM along with Peter Carter QC and Tublu Krishnendu Mukherjee
  • Lawyers must be creative and innovative! (03/04/2018)
    Elise gave an interview in London on the profession of human rights lawyer and modern slavery.
  • Chambers and Partners Global Wide Business & Human Rights Law ranking (15/02/2018)
    Elise is ranked in the prestigious and exacting Band 2 Ranked Lawyers of the Chambers and Partners Global Wide "Business & Human Rights Law" guide.
  • OHCHR Consultation on the Relevance of Human Rights Due Diligence to Determinations of Corporate Liability (05/10/2017)
    Elise speaks on the "Legal Regimes Requiring Companies to Carry Out Human Rights Due Diligence" panel of this consultation for the United Nations Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Thursday 5th of October 2017 at 3.
  • Canada 150 - 150th Anniversary of Canadian Confederation in the Americas: Canada's Role in Protecting Human Rights (05/09/2017)
    Elise speaks at the roundtable "Protection of Human Rights of vulnerable populations: Inter-American system, national institutions or both" at the international conference "Canada 150 - 150th Anniversary of Canadian Confederation in the Americas: Canada's Role in Protecting Human Rights" hosted by the University of Ottawa on September 15-16,2017.
  • Top 5 lawyers in Business and Human Rights field (17/03/2017)
    Elise ranked in the top 5 lawyers globally with the highest ranking in the field of Business and Human Rights by Chambers & Partners Global Guide !
  • Elise has been interviewed for Iberian Lawyer (Madrid) about the role of human rights lawyers in the field of Business and Human Rights (2017)
  • « Compliance, duty of vigilance and risk management », « Business & Human Rights and Modern Slavery: Does your client know the cost of not knowing? » (06/10/2016)
    Elise is speaking in two high-level training in London and Paris respectively on 29 September, 2016 from 7:30, Mazars, and October 6, 2016 from 8:30 to 11:30, DS Avocats.
  • Conference of the Conseil national des Barreaux (CNB) and the American Bar Association (ABA) on the "International Corporate Liability in Conflict Zones" held in Paris (Ministry of Foreign Affairs) on March 2013 (Program of the CNB/ABA Conference in English, see Proceedings in the Publications section);
  • Training workshop, organized jointly by the ICDAA and the ICB on international criminal law and the International Criminal Court, in the Netherlands, France, Senegal, Canada, USA, Mexico, San Juan (Costa Rica), Buenos Aires (Argentina) and Lima (Peru).


  • Pierre le Lay, "Fighting Modern Slavery. Interview with Elise Groulx", Impakter, 2018
  • Béatrice Parance & Elise Groulx, "La Déclaration de performance extra-financière. Nouvelle ambition du reporting extra-financier", Semaine juridique, Entreprises et Affaires, le 15 mars 2018, Hebdomadaire No11, pp.18-24
  • Crossed views on the duty of vigilance and the duty of care ("Regards croisés sur le devoir de vigilance et le duty of care") (26/02/2018)
    Elise co-authored with a law professor Ms Beatrice Parance an article which presents the new French Law on Duty of Vigilance adopted in 2017, in a comparative law perspective in France (French law and the duty of care in common law jurisdictions). It's published in the famous International law Journal, Le Clunet.


  • Elise Groulx, "General counsel must understand that businesses are responsible for protecting human rights", Iberian Lawyer, Madrid, 2016


  • Elise Groulx, Lew Diggs, "Saqueo de recursos naturales en cadenas de aprovisionamiento global", 2013 Emerging Issues 7009


  • Elise Groulx Diggs, Catherine Meredith, Vera Padberg, The Modern Slavery Act 2015: corporate reporting requirements to tackle slavery in supply chains, Doughty Street International Blog


  • Elise Groulx, co-aut., “Article 43” and “Article 67”, Code of International Criminal Law and Procedure, annotated , Larcier
  • Elise Groulx, "Droit international pénal : un nouveau champ de responsabilité pour les dirigeants d'entreprise / International Criminal Law : a New Area of Responsibility for Business Leaders", Actes du colloque / Conference Procedings, Conseil national des Barreaux et American Bar Association, La responsabilité internationale des entreprises en zone de conflit / International Corporate Liability in Conflict Zones, Paris, Ministère des affaires étrangères, 21 mars 2013
  • Elise Groulx, Lew H. Diggs, "Le cas des ressources pillées en amont des chaînes d'approvisionnement mondiales : Poser les bonnes questions", Semaine Juridique, Edition Générale, Lexis Nexis France
  • Elise Groulx, Lew H. Diggs, "Looted Resources in Global Supply Chains: Asking the Right Questions", Semaine Juridique, General Edition, Lexis Nexis France

I am bound both as a lawyer and as a mediator by the codes of conduct of the Paris Bar Association and the Quebec Bar Association. I am also a licensed legal consultant with the New York Bar Association.

If necessary complaints can be addressed to the Paris Bar and the Quebec Bar Associations.

I am covered by a professional insurance with the Québec Bar Association for an amount of $10,000,000 Canadian dollars for matters dealt with in Quebec and $1,000 000 for matters dealt with anywhere else in Canada and the world. I am also covered by the Paris Bar Association for an amount of 4,0000,000 Euros for matters dealt in France.

Elise Groulx Diggs
Associate Tenant
Doughty Street Chambers
United States