Academy Users in the Spotlight


It has been a while since our last Newsletter, but as we have closed the year 2022, we would like to reflect on our highlights of this past year. Without any doubt, it was the Academy’s Summer Courses session! After a two year period of Covid and lockdowns, the Academy Courses finally took place again at the Peace Palace premises. It was a wonderful reminder that the Academy students create the best buzz and truly bring the Peace Palace to life! We would like to thank everyone who supported us this year. On behalf of the PPL community, we wish you an enjoyable read and hope to welcome you again in the Reading Room in the coming year!

The Editors

Daniel McCarthy

During my three weeks in The Hague at the Academy’s Summer Courses in International Law, the Peace Palace Library played the part of researcher’s paradise. The Library’s collection is unrivaled for its breadth of public international-law literature. Indeed, it was a privilege to work in a Library where the most current literature was available alongside rich archival material, always on-demand with the help of the Library’s gracious staff. Which is to mention, the staff took exceptional care of the Library’s patrons - taking interest in their research - always ready to help. They deserve many thanks.

Currently, my research focuses on non-proliferation and disarmament issues connected to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and its interpretation under international law norms. As the world’s disarmament treaty-regime exists today in a state of flux - perhaps decline to borrow a term from Judge Nolte - having access to the Library’s resources proved immensely helpful.

In September, my hope is to finish my research and submit my LL.M thesis under the kind supervision of Prof. Kerstin von der Decken at the Walther-Schücking-Institute at the University of Kiel. My masters in Germany follows my studies in the United States, where I received a B.A in Urban Studies and a J.D. from Cleveland State University before my admittance to the Ohio Bar in 2020.

It was working at a refugee-resettlement organization in Cleveland in 2016 after my undergraduate studies that first sparked my interest in studying law. It was there that I had contact with immigration attorneys, who worked with refugees and migrants navigating the US bureaucracy on the road to citizenship. During law school, I got to work with those colleagues defending asylum cases before immigration court and helping detained migrants bond out of custody. Additionally, during law school I had the opportunity to extern with federal public-defenders working with clients on Ohio’s death row.

These two experiences gave me a narrow window into human-rights law and refugee law in a domestic context. Overtime, this practical insight translated into a more general interest in public international law, which I was able to pursue in Kiel.

Studying the past semesters and participating in the 2022 Summer Courses at the Hague have been both an academic challenge and a real joy. I want to thank all my professors and lecturers in Kiel, as well as the professors who lectured at the Academy this summer. Likewise, I wish to thank those judges from the ICJ, who took the time to meet with us and answer our questions.

It was my sense that students left the experience inspired, energized to continue the work advancing international law. I look forward with interest to see what accomplishments my fellow students achieve, and what new ideas they develop.


Abdellatif Lahlou

Je suis Abdellatif Lahlou. Je suis marocain et étudie actuellement étudiant en Master II en droit international et européen à l'Université Paris Nanterre ainsi qu'en Master II de théorie du droit à l'Université Paris Nanterre, l'EHESS et l'ENS Ulm. 

J'ai eu le grand plaisir de fréquenter intensivement la bibliothèque du Palais de la Paix durant la session de cours d'été de droit international public. J'y ai trouvé un environnement de travail extrêmement favorable.

La documentation disponible est impressionnante et probablement la meilleure au monde en droit international. La disponibilité du personnel ainsi que l'atmosphère d'émulation qui se dégage d'un tel endroit sont extrêmement stimulants.

Enfin, la possibilité d'accéder à des ressources, importantes et souvent rares, à distance est un atout considérable tant pour les chercheurs que pour les praticiens du droit international. Tout cela m'a permis d'approfondir les différentes notions abordées pendant les cours et de progresser dans mes travaux de recherche de Master. 

En un mot, merci et à la  prochaine!


Anna Doumbia

"I am Anna Doumbia, a fourth year PhD student from Paris Nanterre University. My research focus on the responsibility of transnational corporations and subsequent violations to human dignity in the conduct of their activities.

I had the chance to be part of the 2022 Summer courses of the Academy which also allowed me to use the Peace Palace Library’s resources and facilities. Even coming from Paris which is rather closed and well-endowed with prestigious libraries, patronizing the Peace Palace Library has definitely been a turning point in my research as an access to the Library grants access to multiple legal databases which are otherwise not available.

While most users of the Library highlight its outstanding resources and organization, I would like to put the emphasis on its energy and atmosphere. The Library is such an emulating place! Studying there was also quite a pivotal role in the social aspect for the courses and overall experience. I had the chance to meet some of the most open minded and knowledgeable people in the field as research from all over the world at different stages of their career uses the Library.

Over the past three weeks, I have blossomed intellectually and humanly. If I had no doubts about the quality of the lessons that would be provided to me, I, however, was surprised to find myself successively intrigued, passionate, and still discovering so much. The rich diversity is undoubtedly what I will retain the most from these three weeks at the Academy and the Library. Whether it is illustrated by its participants, its teachers, its staff, the philosophies presented, it is intrinsically linked to the success and prestige of this institution.

On a personal level, I come out of this experience inspired. I met within the Academy of wonderful and inspiring people both in terms of their careers and their ideas and their eloquence and certainly, actively patronizing the Peace Palace Library has greatly contributed to this amazing experience!

 I would like to address a warm thank you to all the library ‘staff whose kindness and professionalism was instrumental to my progress.


Bruno Barreto de A. Teixeira

"The Peace Palace Library in one of the greatest spots for academics to do their research. The Library is rich of classic and contemporary works by the most widely acclaimed authors in international and comparative law. But most of all, the environment of the place, with a great view to the Peace Palace, and its welcoming staff, makes visiting the place a must."

Bruno Barreto de A. Teixeira studied law a the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio) and completed his Master of Laws (LL.M.) Degree at New York University School of Law (NYU). He is currently a Ph.D. Student at the University of São Paulo (USP).

During his Ph.D. studies, Bruno was awarded a scholarship from the Hague Academy of International Law to conclude his research at the Peace Palace Library, during the Summer of 2022. He had also visited the Library as a student while attending the 2018 Summer Courses.


Dr. Martina Previatello, PhD, University of Trieste, Italy

“As an attendee of the Private International Law course of the Hague Academy, I found the Library’s resources very useful to study in depth not only the subjects tackled in the courses and seminars, but also the issues which have been discussed at the insightful sessions of the Directed Studies.

Besides that, the rich collections of the Library turned out to be an excellent support for the further development of my research – focused on EU External Relations Law in the Field of Migration and Asylum –  towards the publication of a book on the same topic.

The Academy provides its attendees a unique opportunity to confront themselves with a truly international environment and to experience a melting-pot of different legal traditions, languages and cultures, which confers upon jurists the ability to design out-of-the-box solutions for cross-border legal problems. This mindset will surely help my future experience as a trainee at the European Court of Justice”.


Steeve Guillod

Avoir l’opportunité de bénéficier du savoir-faire de l’Académie du droit international de La Haye (ci-après « l’Académie »), à l’aube de la célébration de son centenaire, tout en accédant aux extraordinaires ressources de la bibliothèque du Palais de la Paix, est une expérience qui me paraît humainement et intellectuellement des plus enrichissantes.

 Les deux institutions précitées ne m’étaient pas inconnues, puisqu’en 2014 mes études m’ont dirigé dans une ville dont j’ignorais alors – honteusement – l’existence : Leiden. Dès mon arrivée au Pays-Bas, la proximité et l’accessibilité de la bibliothèque du Palais de la Paix l’ont tout simplement rendu incontournable. Au-delà de son répertoire abyssal et de la serviabilité de son personnel, la bibliothèque du Palais de la Paix se situe là où le concept de droit international est pratiquement sanctifié et où la justice est pour ainsi dire palpable dans l’air. L’architecture intérieure du Palais de la Paix, qui est embellie de saisissants vitraux et ornée de symboles pacifiques et juridiques, lui donne un statut quasi religieux et m’autorise de le qualifier de Temple de la Paix plutôt que de Palais.

Hormis leur localisation géographique, ce sont incontestablement les intervenants de l’Académie qui rendent les trois semaines des cours d’été exaltantes. Nulle part ailleurs, il ne m’est concevable de pouvoir écouter, dans le même environnement pédagogique, les enseignements de juges de CIJ, de certains des publicistes les plus qualifiés ainsi que des praticiens représentant des Etats qui postulent devant la CIJ et les autres tribunaux internationaux. Seule La Haye semble avoir la capacité de réunir ce microcosme juridique sous un même toit. Ce qui ressort de leurs cours est l’essence d’une vaste expérience et expertise mise au service de la justice internationale. Quant au contenu du programme, sa densité permet à la fois de couvrir une impressionnante quantité de thèmes généraux tout en abordant des questions contemporaines. 

La redécouverte de sujets connus, présentés sous de nouvelles perspectives, et la découverte de sujets inconnus, provenant de systèmes juridiques différents du mien, ayant résulté en de nombreuses discussions et débats parfois houleux avec mes homologues, illustrent de la pertinence du programme des cours d’été. Il n’a sans doute jamais été aussi important, depuis la fin de la Seconde Guerre mondiale, de disperser la mémoire que la bibliothèque du Palais de la Paix préserve et d’analyser les enseignements de l’Académie.

Cette brève description de mon expérience lors des cours d’été de l’Académie et de mon utilisation de la bibliothèque du Palais de la Paix résume mon point de vue privé de jeune praticien à la Direction du droit international public du Département fédéral des affaires étrangères de la Confédération suisse. Elle a pour objectif de promouvoir l’utilisation accrue de la bibliothèque du Palais de la Paix ainsi que le suivi et l’analyse critique des cours.

Finalement, il s’agit également d’apporter mes encouragements à mes consœurs et confrères qui partagent la même vision de l’état de droit que moi et qui s’attellent à sa défense.  


Syed Mujtaba Athar, Doctoral Scholar – Academy Summer Program 2022

The opportunity to participate in The Hague Academy Summer Course and use the Peace Palace Library has been a lifelong dream of mine. Private international law research in traditional Indian universities is still in its early stages, but my supervisor has been instrumental in supporting my synopsis to work in this area. When I began my PhD in India, the doctoral scholarship program at The Hague Academy of International Law loomed large in my mind, owing to its outstanding faculty and interdisciplinary approach to International Law. Furthermore, the Hague provides an ideal environment for me to pursue my International law interests. I am especially pleased to have been granted access to the Peace Palace Library's well-organized and extensive collection of resources. The Library is one of the best libraries in the world in terms of its collection and range of research resources it has to offer. All the Academy and the Library staffs have been instrumental and pivotal in ensuring that our stay and research journey remains smooth and enjoyable. The Academy's cross-disciplinary nature has broadened and enriched my research as well as my general understanding of public and private international law.