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Dr. R.M. (Rumyana) van Ark

Senior Researcher in (Counter-)Terrorism and Human Rights
Faculty of Law
T.M.C. Asser Instituut

Visiting address
  • Schimmelpennincklaan 20-22
Postal address
  • Overview

    Dr. Rumyana van Ark (née Grozdanova) is a Senior Researcher in (Counter-)Terrorism and Human Rights at the T.M.C. Asser Institute of the University of Amsterdam. She is a senior member and coordinator of the Implementing Partner Team on a range of GCTF Initiatives including the US and Norway led Initiative on racially and ethnically motivated violent extremism and the US and UK led Initiative on countering UAS. In 2021, she was part of the consortium team of experts within the European Commission funded Radicalisation Awareness Network (RAN) as well as part of the team evaluating the operation of EU Directive 2017/541 on Combatting Terrorism. She is currently a member of the Advisory Board of the PREPARE Project ( She is also a Member of the Editorial Board and the case note editor for the ECHR Law Review. 

    Twitter: @DrRumyanavanArk


    Between September 2014 and April 2018, Rumyana was a Lecturer (the UK equivalent of an Assistant Professor) in the University of Liverpool Law School where she taught and coordinated two research-led Year 3 undergraduate courses (Security, Conflict and the Law and Introduction to the Law of the ECHR) and a core LLM module on International Peace and Security. She also coordinated all the Year 3 undergraduate dissertation modules. During the 2015/2016 academic year, she was nominated for the LawCareers.Net Lecturer of the Year Award. During her PhD studies in Durham Law School, Rumyana was a Tutor in European Constitutional Law. She is also holds a Certificate in Professional Studies in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education.

    Research Interests

    Her general research interests include international and European human rights, terrorism, counter-terrorism and the rule of law, states of emergency, international law and legal theory. She is particularly interested in the impact of domestic and international counter-terrorism measures and national security policies on the individual, the rule of law and state accountability. More specifically, her research explores how the relationship between the individual (terror suspect) and the state is altered following acts of terrorism and the broader societal and legal implications. Her academic and professional experience on this topic spans over 7 years. Her first peer-reviewed works were published in 2015. Since then, her work has been published in various academic and professional journals, as part of edited book collections and within governmental reports. She is currently examining how children are affected, directly and indirectly, by immigration and counter-terrorism measures imposed on their parents. She is also researching how the increasing digitilisation/cyberfication of counter-terrorism policies and practices is changing the perceptions of personality. She is currently co-authoring a book on ‘Children’s Rights, ‘Foreign Fighters’ and Counter-Terrorism: The Children of Nowhere’ to be published within the Elgar Studies in Human Rights collection in late 2023. 

  • Publications


    • van Ark, R. (2023). Family Courts as part of the States’ Counter-Terrorism Toolkit: A Welcome Development for Children of FTFs? In F. Capone, C. Paulussen, & R. Mignot-Mahdavi (Eds.), Returning Foreign Fighters: Responses, Legal Challenges and Ways Forward (pp. 227-250). Asser Press. [details]
    • van Ark, R. M., Prabhat, D., & Gordon, F. (2023). Counter-Terrorism, ‘Foreign Fighters’ and Children’s Rights: The Children of Nowhere. (Elgar Studies in Human Rights). Edward Elgar.


    • Van Ark, R. (2022). Individual Terrorist Suspects as the New Folk Devil: New Labour, Rights Tokenism and Security Compulsions. In M. Gordon, & A. Tucker (Eds.), The New Labour Constitution: Twenty Years On (pp. 241-262). (Hart Studies in Constitutional Law; Vol. 10). Hart. [details]
    • van Ark, R. (2022). The "War on Terror". In S. Sayapin, R. Atadjanov, U. Kadam, G. Kemp, N. Zambrana-Tévar, & N. Quénivet (Eds.), International Conflict and Security Law: A Research Handbook (pp. 1359-1388). Asser Press. Advance online publication. [details]


    • van Ark, R. M., & Renckens, C. (2020). The Normalisation of Secrecy in the United Kingdom and the Netherlands: Individuals, the Courts and the Counter-Terrorism Framework. In Human Dignity and Human Security in Times of Terrorism (pp. 333-365). Springer.


    • van Ark, R. M. (2015). The United Kingdom and Diplomatic Assurances: A Minimalist Approach towards the Anti-torture Norm. International Criminal Law Review, 15(3), 517-543.
    • van Ark, R. M. (2015). ‘Terrorism’ – Too Elusive a Term for an International Legal Definition? Netherlands International Law Review, 61(3), 305-334.





    Journal editor

    • van Ark, R. (editor) (2020-2030). European Convention on Human Rights Law Review (Journal).

    Talk / presentation


    • van Ark, R. (organiser), Gherbaoui, T. (organiser) & Sexton, J. (organiser) (31-10-2023). Countering Terrorism and Violent Extremism in the Public Interest. The workshop was organized within the research agenda themes and priorities set under the Annual Strategic Research Agenda (ASRA) of the Asser (…) (organising a conference, workshop, ...).
    • van Ark, R. (participant) & Gherbaoui, T. (participant) (26-9-2023). Exploring Linkages between Rule of Law Backsliding and Human Rights. Presented joint paper on "Excessive Judicial Deference as Rule of Law Backsliding: When National Security and Effective Rights Protection Collide (…) (participating in a conference, workshop, ...).
    This list of publications is extracted from the UvA-Current Research Information System. Questions? Ask the library or the Pure staff of your faculty / institute. Log in to Pure to edit your publications. Log in to Personal Page Publication Selection tool to manage the visibility of your publications on this list.
  • Ancillary activities
    No ancillary activities