Understanding the social function of pre-trial detention: A comparative study between Canada and France

Understanding the recent frequent use of pre-trial detention in Canada and France is crucial, considering its impact on the lives of individuals that are detained while still being presumed innocent, as well as the significant financial costs for the state. This project aims to compare the institution of pre-trial detention and examine the role that it is currently playing in Canada and France – two countries that share different legal traditions namely common law and civil law. The objectives of this research are threefold. It will not only reveal the ways that this institution is implemented in both jurisdictions, but also the social functions that this mechanism plays within the criminal justice system. Finally, from a comparative perspective, it will allow legal comparativists to understand whether criminal justice institutions, such as pre-trial detention, can share similar social functions despite the fact that they are part of different legal traditions.

Faculty Supervisor:

Marie Manikis


Julien Larregue






McGill University



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