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Elizabeth Neill

Photo: Sandor Haas-Neill 2017

Elizabeth (Elle) Neill was born in Kirkland Lake, Ontario. She holds a doctorate in human rights and certificates in negotiation and mediation; she is a certified teacher of English, ESL 1, and Drama.

Awards include a two-year, SSHRC post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Toronto, a Gold Medal for the highest graduating average in her Honours BA program at Western University, and recognition by the Canadian Intellectual Property Academy for her contributions to intellectual property theory (2005).

She is co-founder of the Public Policy Sub-Group of the Flourishing Community of Practice within the the Program for Human Flourishing at Harvard University.

Elizabeth has taught at the Universities of Guelph, Toronto, and Western Ontario, but left university teaching to pursue longer hours as a writer and editor specializing in developing a broad range of content for web and print. She has ghost-authored articles and books for a number of professional clients, and is currently writing a co-authored book in the area of political economy with a focus on Flourishing in Canada.

Elizabeth’s doctoral work on flourishing began with her paper, “Well-Being for Women: The Freedom Factor,” delivered at the 1995 Canadian Society for Women in Philosophy conference at Montreal. By 2001, when she published her book, Rites of Privacy and the Privacy Trade: On the Limits of Protection for the Self, she preferred the concept of "flourishing" as capturing a deeper sense of what brings meaning and stability to human lives; in that work, Neill discusses the concept of flourishing in the context of constructing a theory of human rights, arguing that privacy and autonomy (as self-determination) are at the core of the flourishing that grounds our sense of human dignity and leads individuals to value the flourishing of others. She states “that people who have been allowed to flourish materially and socially will construct their own and others’ dignity, as well as rights to those things [that promote human dignity].” [p 120] She is excited to be building upon this earlier work in her current project.

Elizabeth has served as adjudicator for several TWUC short fiction contests and is active in the Manuscript Review program.

She is occasionally available for copy editing, ghost authoring, and "value-added" editing (a mix of copy editing and ghosting). 

She recently enjoyed a break from academic writing to pen "The Pennywise Press: A Memoir," published in the December 2017 issue of The Devils' Artisan.

She is also involved in jazz and pop singing, physical fitness, dance, gardening, photography, and rights advocacy. And she is devoted to her peeps.


E-mail: c/o Writers' Union of Canada
Phone number:
c/o Writers' Union of Canada


Flourishing in Canada: How to Get the Good Life. Institute for Flourishing in Canada, September, 2021
The Pennywise Press: A Memoir (article/photography). The Devil's Artisan, December 2017
Rites of Privacy and the Privacy Trade: On the Limits of Protection for the Self . Montreal, McGill-Queen's UP 2001., Sample Review: "A serious advance in state-of-the-art research in the field." David Dyzenhaus, University of Toronto.
Hume's Moral Sublime (article) . Oxford University Press (British Journal of Aesthetics) , 1997


Award to Scholarly Publications: Federation for Humanities and Social Sciences for Rites of Privacy and the Privacy Trade, 2001
Eligible for National Public Readings Program :


Northern OAC WITS:
GST not applicable