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Daniel Ambrosini


Dr. Ambrosini is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences at McMaster and Legal Counsel in the Forensic Psychiatry Program at St. Joseph’s Healthcare Hamilton.

Before coming to McMaster, he was a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard Law School and a research lawyer with the Law Commission of Ontario. He was founding Co-Editor-in-Chief of the McGill Journal of Law & Health, lectured at Harvard and McGill, and worked with criminal defense firms in Quebec and Ontario. The topic of his doctoral dissertation explored clinical, ethical, and legal aspects of psychiatric advance directives and the role of autonomy for individuals with mental illness.

Featured Publications

Ambrosini, D. L., Crocker, A. G., & Latimer, E. (2012). Preferences for instructional or proxy advance directives in mental health: A mixed methods study. Journal of Ethics in Mental Health6, 2012.

Ambrosini, D. L., Bemme, D., Crocker, A.G., & Latimer, E. (2012). Narratives of psychiatric advance directives: qualitative study. Journal of Ethics in Mental Health, 6, 2012.

Ambrosini, D. L., & Crocker, A. G. (2007). Psychiatric advance directives and the right to refuse treatment in Canada. Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, 52(6), 397-402.

Ambrosini, D. L., & Joncas, L. (2013). Civil commitment: a cross-country check-up, In Bloom, H., Schneider, R. (Eds.). Law and Mental Disorder: A Comprehensive and Practical Approach (Toronto: Irwin Law).


  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard Law School, 2013
  • PhD, McGill Department of Psychiatry, 2011
  • MSc, McGill Department of Psychiatry, 2007
  • LLB/BCL, McGill Faculty of Law, 2007
  • BA, McGill Department of Psychology, 2003

Research Areas

Dr. Ambrosini's current research focuses on law and neuroscience (neurolaw), neuroethics, forensic psychiatry, and psychiatric ethics including topics such as consent and capacity and decision-making. He has been a frequent speaker at national and international conferences in mental health law, has conducted empirical research projects related to the legal profession, and has been the recipient of numerous awards and scholarships.

Dr. Ambrosini is accepting students who wish to conduct an Independent Study through the MINDs program (McMaster Integrative Neuroscience Discovery & Study).

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