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The papers in this special issue of the McGill Law Journal are some of the fruits of an extended research project on trusts in civilian and mixed legal systems. This project began in 2007 at the Quebec Research Centre of Private and Comparative Law, which in 2012 was renamed the Paul-André Crépeau Centre for Private and Comparative Law, in homage to its founding director, who passed away in 2011 after a distinguished career spanning more than fifty years at McGill’s Faculty of Law.

During 2008–2009, the centre hosted an international series of civil law workshops, the six papers from which were published in 2012 by Cambridge University Press as Re-imagining the Trust: Trusts in Civil Law.[1] Then, in 2010, the centre hosted a large international conference, The Worlds of the Trust / La fiducie dans tous ses États. There was a strong response to an international call for papers, and the conference included a range of speakers and commentators from all over the world and from all career stages, including a number of doctoral students. This led to a volume of twenty-two essays, which will be published in 2013, again by Cambridge University Press.[2]

Taking both collections together, six of the papers were written in French, and these were translated into English for the Cambridge publications. I am absolutely delighted that, with the cooperation of the authors, the support of the McGill Law Journal, and the permission of Cambridge University Press, those papers now appear in their original French in the pages of this special issue. (The English-language paper that appears in this issue is published here for the first time.)

The research project was supported by the Fonds de recherche du Québec—Société et culture; the Research Assistance Program of Quebec’s Ministère du Développement économique, de l’Innovation et de l’Exportation; the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada; the American College of Trusts and Estates Counsel Foundation; and by McGill University and its Faculty of Law. On behalf of the centre, I thank all of them for their assistance.

My hope is that the substantial published outcomes from this project will generate a renewed interest in the comparative study of the law of trusts.