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Prof. André Nollkaemper, dean of the Faculty of Law and professor of public international law, has been appointed university professor of International Law and Sustainability at the UvA by the Executive Board. His appointment is one of the steps the UvA will take in the coming months to intensify and accelerate interdisciplinary research and education in the fields of climate change and at the UvA.
André Nollkaemper (photo: Millette Raats)
André Nollkaemper (photo: Millette Raats)

‘Now is the time to increase our efforts to find solutions to sustainability problems. As a university, we want to ensure that our researchers work together, across disciplinary boundaries, to address the issues of climate change and sustainability more generally. André Nollkaemper is one of our top scientists, with a great track record as a lawyer, academic and administrator,’ says Rector Magnificus Peter-Paul Verbeek. 'He has done pioneering work in the fields of responsibility in the international legal order and the use of international law for the protection of the global environment. I am therefore very pleased that André will continue his work at the UvA as university professor of International Law and Sustainability.'

The role of international law for sustainability

After more than seven years, Nollkaemper will resign from his position as dean of the Faculty of Law faculty on 1 January 2024 to fully focus on research and education in the field of international law on sustainability and on forging interdisciplinary research on the topic at the UvA. As a university professor, Nollkaemper will primarily focus on the system transition needed to limit climate change and the crossing of planetary boundaries, and on the contribution of international law to that transition. International law has been instrumental in facilitating the global practices of states, international organisations, national and multinational companies, and consumers, that have combined to create global harm such as climate change. Yet it is also indispensable for achieving solutions.

Insights from other disciplines will similarly be indispensable in this work. As a university professor, Nollkaemper will not only focus on contributions to his own field, but will have an explicit UvA-wide responsibility to further stimulate and bring together research and education in the fields of sustainability and climate change. He will seek connections with scientists from other disciplines, both inside and outside the UvA, and work with social partners to ensure that the UvA develops new ideas and insights for a more sustainable future.

About André Nollkaemper

Prof. P.A. Nollkaemper obtained his PhD from Utrecht University in 1993 on the legal regulation of pollution of international watercourses. Since then, he has conducted groundbreaking research on such areas as protection of the oceans, responsibility for climate change, endangered species protection and international animal welfare regulation. Themes that are crucial for the global regulation of sustainability - such as system criminality, liability of actors who contribute to global harm and the impact of international regulation on national law and policy - also play a major role in his work. Nollkaemper has been professor of Public International Law at the UvA since 1998. In 2016, he was appointed dean of the Faculty of Law. Previously, he was director of the Amsterdam Center for International Law (ACIL), which he founded, and headed the International Law department. From 2011 to 2020, Nollkaemper was the external legal advisor to the Netherlands Minister of Foreign Affairs. He was also president of the European Society of International Law, is a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) and was elected as a member of the prestigious Institut de Droit International in 2018. Since 2022, he has led the UvA Sustainability Platform.

About the university professors

University professors are specially appointed by the Executive Board, generally for a period of five years. They are expected to give impetus to scientific developments that transcend traditional disciplines and thus make an important contribution to the university's profile. In addition to André Nollkaemper, the UvA has seven other university professors: Tobias Blanke, Natali Helberger, Ivana Išgum, Rick van der Ploeg, Maarten de Rijke, Patti Valkenburg, and Claes de Vreese.