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OXGS Fellow Geraldine Van Bueren

Geraldine Van Bueren

OXGS Fellow

Professor Emerita Geraldine Van Bueren QC is an Hon. Senior Fellow at the British Institute of International and Comparative Law (BIICL) and a Visiting Fellow at Kellogg College, Oxford. She is a barrister and member of Doughty Street Chambers and was appointed an honorary Queen’s Counsel in recognition of her scholastic contributions to national and international law. At the time of her appointment there were fewer than ten women honorary silks. She is also a Bencher in the Middle Temple.

Professor Geraldine Van Bueren QC held the first Chair of International Human Rights Law at Queen Mary University of London, which awarded her the title of Professor Emerita. She founded the Human Rights Collegium and served as its first director.

She has also served as a Commissioner on the Equality and Human Rights Commission with lead responsibility for human rights and on the Attorney-General’s International Pro Bono Committee.

In 2003, Professor Van Bueren was awarded the Child Rights Lawyer Award. The Award, jointly organised by the Law Society, UNICEF and The Lawyer, recognises lawyers who have done outstanding work in the field of children’s rights.

Professor Van Bueren is one of the original drafters of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and also helped draft the United Nations Rules for the Protection of Juveniles Deprived of their Liberty, the UNHCR Guidelines on Refugee Children and the United Nations Programme of Action on Children in the Criminal Justice System.

She has represented the United Nations in discussions with Iran; the Commonwealth Secretariat in Bangladesh and advised the Government of Japan and Unicef. She has also acted as an expert witness for the Government of Canada and has lectured and worked throughout Europe and the United States and in Argentina, Senegal, Uganda and Venezuela. From 2002 to 2006 Professor Van Bueren held a second concurrent chair the W P Schreiner Professor, Professor of International Human Rights Law at the University of Cape Town.

Professor Van Bueren co-founded INTERIGHTS, represented Amnesty International for ten years at the UN on children’s rights and is a member of the Advisory Board of Human Rights Watch (Children’s Rights Project), Child Rights International and is on the Advisory Board of Rene Cassin. She has also served as a non-executive director and Trustee of Save the Children.

Professor Van Bueren is Chair of the Association of Working Class Academics, edited Law’s Duty to the Poor for UNESCO and is one of a group of academics who together with non-governmental organisations are drafting an Economic, Social and Cultural Rights Act for the United Kingdom.

She has co-authored with Angelina Jolie ‘Know Your Rights and Claim Them’ for Amnesty International (Andersen Press, 2021) and is currently writing ‘Class and Law’ (Hart).  She also holds a Leverhulme Emeritus Fellowship for her work on ‘Class, Social Mobility and Law’.

Areas of expertise

  • International human rights
  • Children’s rights
  • International organizations
  • International social justice