Paul T Babie is Bonython Chair in Law and Professor of Law in the Adelaide Law School, the University of Adelaide. He is currently Associate Dean of Law (International Development) and Director of the Research Unit for the Study of Society, Ethics, and Law, and has previously been Associate Dean of Law (Research) and Associate Dean of Law (Learning and Teaching). He was elected a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Law in 2017 and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts in 2021. He received the 2021 Australian Legal Education Awards (ALEA) Excellence in Research Supervision Award, a 2011 Executive Dean’s Prize for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, the 2007 Adelaide Law School Excellence in Teaching Prize, 2015 and 2016 Executive Dean’s Awards for Excellence in Research, and 2014 and 2017 Executive Dean’s Commendations for Excellence in Research.
He holds a BA in sociology and political science from the University of Calgary, a BThSt from Flinders University, a LLB from the University of Alberta, a LLM from the University of Melbourne, writing a thesis on the transferability of water entitlements supervised by SD Clark, and a DPhil in law from St Catherine's College, the University of Oxford, completing a thesis on the nature of the Crown (state) interest in Australian land supervised by JW Harris, DJ Ibbetson, and JD Davies. At Oxford, he was a Viscount Bennett, a Canadian Centennial, and a Landau Scholar. Following law school he was an Associate with Howard, Mackie (now Borden Ladner Gervais (BLG)) in Calgary, Canada, specialising in securities and natural resources law. Prior to his appointment to the Adelaide Law School, he was Lecturer in Law at St Catherine's and Balliol Colleges, University of Oxford, and the Melbourne Law School, The University of Melbourne. He is a Barrister and Solicitor (inactive) of the Court of Queen's Bench of Alberta (Canada), and an Associate Member of the Law Society of South Australia (of which he is a Member of the Property Law Committee). He is frequently consulted on issues relating to real property law and law and religion (especially in relation to the Australian Constitution).
His research, throughout his career, has involved asking what property is and how, if at all, it can be justified. He has explored those questions from legal theoretical and from theological perspectives. He is a General Editor of the Australian Property Law Journal, was Editor in Chief and South Australia Editor of the Property Law Review (Thomson Reuters), and is an Editorial Board Member of the Journal of Law and Religion (Cambridge University Press), the Routledge Research Series in Law and Religion, the Springer Research Series in Law and Religion, and of the Forum on Religion & Ecology (FORE) @ Australia. His work has appeared in leading American and Australian law reviews. He teaches property law, property theory, law and religion, and Roman law.