Ralph Wilde

Ralph Wilde

B.Sc. (Econ.) International Relations, LSE, 1995; CPE, City University, London, 1996; MA (Law), City University, 2004; Diploma in European Human Rights Law, European University Institute, Florence, 1998; LL.M., Cambridge University, 1999; Ph.D., Cambridge University, 2003

Reader in Law

+44 (0)20 3108 8385

ralph.wilde@ucl.ac.uk

Ralph’s current research project is Human Rights Beyond Borders.

On the global refugee crisis, watch Ralph’s presentation delivered at the American Society of International Law in 2016, and read his posts, part 1 and part 2, on the blog of the European Journal of International Law.

Download CV, including publications list

Conference presentations

About Ralph Wilde

Ralph Wilde has been a member of the Faculty of Laws at University College London (UCL), University of London since July 2002. He was formerly a Supervisor in International Law at Trinity, Corpus Christi and St. Edmund’s Colleges, Cambridge, a Guest Lecturer at the Cambridge University Law Faculty, and the Henry Fellow and Visiting Scholar at Yale Law School.

Since joining UCL, Ralph has also been a Visiting Professor at the University of Texas Law School, an Adjunct Professor at Georgetown University Law Center, a Senior Global Research Fellow at NYU Law School, a Visiting Faculty Member at the Central European University in Budapest, a Senior Fellow at Melbourne University School of Law, a Visiting Professor at the University of California in Los Angeles, a Senior Visiting Researcher at the Fundação Casa Rui Barbosa, Rio de Janeiro, a Visiting Professor at the Federal University of Paraiba, João Pessoa, Brazil, a Senior Visiting Fellow at Al Quds University, Palestine, and a Visiting Research Professor at Tel Aviv University, Israel.

Ralph is an expert in public international law, and also has an interest in the interface between international law and related academic disciplines, including international relations and legal and political theory.

Ralph is a Senior Research Associate at the Refugee Law Initiative of the Human Rights Consortium of the University of London School of Advanced Studies, and a member of the UCL Migration Research Unit, the UCL Refuge in a Moving World Network, the Advisory Panel on Public International Law of the British Institute for International and Comparative Law, the Peer Review Council of the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council, and the Advisory Board of the ‘Legal Tools For Peace-Making’ Project at Cambridge University. In 2018 he will serve as Director of Studies of the Centre for Studies and Research at the Hague Academy of International Law.

Ralph previously served as Academic Secretary of the British Branch of the International Law Association (ILA), and as one of the two UK representatives on the international ILA Executive Council, from 2004-2011. He was also Rapporteur of the ILA Study Group on UN Reform, and Co-Rapporteur of the ILA Committee on Human Rights. He was formerly a Trustee and member of the Board of Directors of the AIRE (Advice on Individual Rights in Europe) Centre in London, and a member of the Advisory Board of the UCL Centre for International Courts and Tribunals, the Steering Committee of the UCL Institute for Human Rights, the UK Lawyers’ Committee of Peace Brigades International, the governing boards of the LSE and the University of London, the Executive Council of the American Society of International Law, the Executive Board of the European Society of International Law, the executive Committee of the UK Human Rights Lawyers’ Association, and the Advisory Committee of International Lawyers for Africa.

Ralph is a member of the editorial advisory boards of the Cambridge Journal of International and Comparative Law, the London Review of International Law, and Prima@Facie (the Law Journal of the Federal University of Paraiba, João Pessoa, Brazil).  He was previously joint book review editor of the International and Comparative Law Quarterly, a member of the editorial boards of the Yale Journal of International Law and the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal, and a member of the editorial advisory boards of Current Legal Problems, the International Journal of Statebuilding and the journal Global Change, Peace & Security.

Research

Ralph’s research included work on the administration of territory by international organizations and the concept of trusteeship in international law and public policy. His monograph on this topic, International Territorial Administration: How Trusteeship and the Civilizing Mission Never Went Away (OUP, 2008), won the Certificate of Merit (book prize) of the American Society of International Law in 2009. He is currently continuing his work on the extraterritorial application of human rights law.

For a full list of Ralph’s publications, see his CV and publication list

For his research Ralph has been awarded grants from the UK Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC), the British Academy and the Nuffield Foundation, and a Research Fellowship from the Leverhulme Trust. In 2010, the UK Leverhulme Trust awarded him a Philip Leverhulme Prize, which is given to UK-based academics under 40 who are judged to be ‘outstanding scholars who have made a substantial and recognized contribution to their particular field of study, recognized at an international level’.

In 2012 Ralph was awarded a €1.1 million Research Frontier Grant (in the ‘Consolidator’ category) from the European Research Council. This is funding a five-year interdisciplinary project, Human Rights Beyond Borders, on the extraterritorial application of human rights law, covering both civil and political rights and economic, social and cultural rights, including the right to development. The project began in February 2013 and runs until August 2018.

View Ralph’s research profile on the UCL IRIS website

Book

International Territorial Administration: How Trusteeship and the Civilizing Mission Never Went Away (Oxford University Press, 2008) ISBN 978-0-19-957789-7 (paperback) 978-0-19-927432-1 (hardback) [640 pages/300,000 words]

Book Chapters

‘Dilemmas in promoting global economic justice through human rights law’ Chapter 5 in Nehal Bhuta (ed.), The Frontiers of Human Rights: Extraterritoriality and its Challenges, Collected Courses of the Academy of European Law (Oxford University Press, 18 February 2016, ISBN: 9780198769279), 127-175 [49 pages/25,000 words]. Open access full text: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/1477638/

‘The extraterritorial application of international human rights law on civil and political rights’, Chapter 35 in Nigel Rodley and Scott Sheeran (eds), Routledge Handbook on Human Rights (Routledge, 2013), 635-61 [28 pages/15,000 words]. The chapter is available via open access chapter on the UCL Discovery website and the ETOS website.
Find more information about the book on the Routledge website.

‘Foreign territorial administration and international trusteeship over people: colonialism, occupation, the mandates and trusteeship arrangements, and international territorial administration’, Chapter 16 in Nigel White (editor), Research Handbook on International Conflict and Security Law (2013, Edward Elgar), [36 pages/12,000 words]

‘Competing Normative Visions for Exit’, Chapter 14 in ‘Exit Strategies and State Building’ (Richard Caplan, ed., New York: Oxford University Press, 2012) 261-75 [15 pages/6700 words]

‘Understanding the International Territorial Administration Accountability Deficit: Trusteeship and the Legitimacy of International Organizations’, Chapter 14, Andrew Clapham (ed.), Human Rights and Non-state Actors (Edward Elgar, 2013) 417-34 [18 pages/7,000 words]

‘Compliance with human rights norms extraterritorially: ‘human rights imperialism’?’, Chapter 16 in International Law and the Quest for its Implementation/Le droit international et la quête de sa mise en œvre, Liber Amicorum Vera Gowlland-Debbas (Laurence Boisson de Chazournes & Marcelo Kohen, eds., Brill/Martinus Nijhoff, 2010), ISBN 978-9004-17714-7, 319-348 [30 pages/15,000 words]

‘Internationally Administered Territories’ in David Forsythe (ed.) Encyclopedia of Human Rights, Vol. 3 (OUP, 2009) 156-164 [9 pages/6,500 words],

(with Barbara Delcourt) «Le retour des «protectorats».  L’irrésistible attrait de l’administration des territoires étrangers» in Barbara Delcourt, Denis Duez et Eric Remacle (eds.), La guerre d’Irak.  Prélude d’un nouvel ordre international? (P.I.E.—Peter Lang, Bruxelles, 2004), 219-47 [29 pages/14,000 words]

Journal Articles

‘When forced migrants decide to make perilous sea crossings: the causal role of international law,’ American Society of International Law, 166 Proceedings of the 110th Annual Meeting: Adapting to a Changing World (2017, American Society of International Law) 166-9 [4 pages/2000 words], obtainable here: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/1503864/, also a video:

‘Human Rights Beyond Borders at the World Court: The Significance of the International Court of Justice’s Jurisprudence on the Extraterritorial Application of International Human Rights Law Treaties’ Chinese Journal of International Law (2013) 12(4) 639-677 [39 pages/17,000 words]

Read the Abstract on the Chinese Journal of International Law website.
Read the Full Text of the article on the Chinese Journal of International Law website.

Download a PDF of the article.
‘From Trusteeship to Self-Determination and Back Again: the Role of the Hague Regulations in the Evolution of International Trusteeship, and the Framework of Rights and Duties of Occupying Powers,’ (2009) 31 Loyola of Los Angeles International and Comparative Law Review 75-132, [58 pages/26,000 words]

‘Kosovo 2008: Independence, recognition and international law’ V(2) (July 2008) Soochow Journal of International Law 50-82 [32 pages/11,000 words]

‘Enhancing accountability at the international level: the tension between international organization and member state responsibility and the underlying issues at stake’ (2006) 12(2) ILSA Journal of International & Comparative Law 395 – 415 [20 pages/9,100 words]

‘Legal “Black Hole”?:  Extraterritorial state action and international treaty law on civil and political rights’ (2005) 26(3) Michigan Journal of International Law 739 – 806 [68 pages/32,000 words]

‘The ‘Legal Space’ or ‘Espace Juridique’ of the European Convention on Human Rights: Is it Relevant to Extraterritorial State Action?’ (2005) 2 European Human Rights Law Review 115 – 124 [10 pages/5,100 words]

‘Representing international territorial administration: a critique of some approaches,’ (2004) 15(1) European Journal of International Law 71–96 and at SSRN, [26 pages/12,300 words]

‘From Danzig to East Timor and Beyond: the Role of International Territorial Administration,’ (2001) 95(3) American Journal of International Law 583 – 606, [24 pages/16,700 words]
Cited by Judge Cançado Trindade in his Separate opinion in the Advisory Opinion of the United Nations International Court of Justice on ‘Accordance with international law of the unilateral declaration of independence in respect of Kosovo’ of 22 July 2010 (page 20, note 52)

‘The Refugee Convention at 50 – Forced Migration Policy in the new Century,’ (2001) 14(2) Journal of Refugee Studies 135 – 150, [16 pages/7,900 words]

‘The complex role of the legal adviser when international organizations administer territory,’ American Society of International Law, Proceedings of the 95th Annual Meeting (2001) 251 – 261 [11 pages/5,200 words]

‘Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes?: Why and How UNHCR Governance of “Development” Refugee Camps Should Be Subject to International Human Rights Law,’ 1 Yale Human Rights & Development Law Journal 107 – 128 (1998), [21 pages/10,800 words]

(with Matthew Craven, Gerry Simpson & Susan Marks) ‘We are teachers of international law’ (2004) 17(2) Leiden Journal of International Law 363 – 374 [12 pages/6,000 words]

‘Accordance with International Law of the Unilateral Declaration of Independence in Respect of Kosovo—International Decision commentary’, (2011) 105(2) American Journal of International Law 301-7, (JSTOR access required) (8 pages/3,700 words).

This article was reproduced as ‘Kosovo (Advisory Opinion)’ in Rudiger Wolfrum (ed.), Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law (Oxford University Press, e-version online 2011, <http://www.mpepil.com/ViewPdf/epil/entries/law-9780199231690-e1307.pdf?stylesheet=EPIL-display-full.xsl>, print version 2012, volume VI, p. 604-9) [6 pages/4,600 words]

‘Remarks’ (on the extraterritorial application of human rights law), American Society of International Law, Proceedings of the 104th Annual Meeting (2011) 110-3 [4 pages/2000 words]

‘Self-determination, Secession and Dispute Settlement after the Kosovo Advisory Opinion’, (2011) 24 Leiden Journal of International Law 149-154, (6 pages, 2,900 words)

‘Recognition in International Law’, paper presented at Chatham House (the Royal Institute of International Affairs), London, 4 February 2010, contained in ‘Recognition of States: the Consequences of Recognition or Non-Recognition in UK and International Law’, International Law Discussion Group Summary, Chatham House, 2-11 [10 pages/4,000 words]

Case Note, R (Al-Skeini) v Secretary of State for Defence (The Redress Trust intervening) (2008) 102(3) American Journal of International Law 628-634 [7 pages/3,600 words]

‘Kosovo—Independence, Recognition and International Law’, paper presented at Chatham House (the Royal Institute of International Affairs), London, 22 April 2008, contained in ‘Kosovo: International Law and Recognition’, Discussion Group Summary, Chatham House, 8-20 [13 pages/4,790 words]

‘The Trusteeship Council,’ Chapter 8 in Thomas G. Weiss & Sam Daws (eds.), The Oxford Handbook on the United Nations (Oxford University Press, 2007), 149-159 [11 pages/4,600 words]

‘Human rights movements’ in Roland Robertson and Jan-Aart Scholte (eds.), Encyclopedia of Globalization (Routledge 2006) Vol. 2, 596-600 [5 pages/2,700 words]

‘Casting Light on the ‘Legal Black Hole’: Some Political Issues at Stake’ (2006) 5 European Human Rights Law Review 552 – 7 [6 pages/3,000 words]

‘Legitimacy and Accountability of International Administrations: A Commentary on Four Papers,’ [12 pages/4,100 words] European Society of International Law website, since 2005

‘The post-colonial use of international territorial administration and issues of legitimacy,’ American Society of International Law, Proceedings of the 99th Annual Meeting (2005) 38 – 42 [5 pages/2,500 words]

‘Self-determination in international law and the position of Montenegro,’ in Sanja Elezovic (ed.), Legal Aspects for Referendum in Montenegro in the Context of International Law and Practice (Foundation Open Society Institute, Representative Office Montenegro, 2005), 25 – 36 [12 pages/4,900 words]

‘The United Nations as government: the tensions of an ambivalent role,’ American Society of International Law, Proceedings of the 97th Annual Meeting (2003) 212 – 15 [4 pages/2,300 words]

‘Taxonomies of international peacekeeping – an alternative narrative,’ (2003) 9(2) ILSA Journal of International & Comparative Law 391 – 8 [8 pages/3,600 words]

‘The skewed responsibility narrative of the ‘failed states’ concept,’ (2003) 9(2) ILSA Journal of International & Comparative Law 425 – 9 [5 pages/2,000 words]

‘The effect of territorial administration by international organizations on local community-building,’ (2003) 2000 – 2003 Third World Legal Studies Journal 239 – 49 [11 pages/2,400 words]

‘Accountability and international actors in Bosnia, Kosovo and East Timor,’ (2001) 7 ILSA Journal of International & Comparative Law 455 – 460 [6 pages/2,400 words]

‘From Bosnia to Kosovo and East Timor: the Changing Role of the United Nations in the Administration of Territory,’ (2000) 6 ILSA Journal of International & Comparative Law 467 – 71 [5 pages/2,100 words]

‘The ambivalent mandates of international organizations in Bosnia-Herzegovina, Kosovo and East Timor,’ in Proceedings of the Joint Meeting of the Australian & New Zealand Society of International Law and the American Society of International Law (2000), 319-321, [3 pages/1,800 words]

‘The Prospects for an Asia-Pacific Human Rights System,’ 1 Yale Human Rights & Development Law Journal 137 – 142 (1998), [6 pages/3,200 words]

(with W. Michael Reisman) ‘The History and Background of Article 19,’ in World Press Freedom Committee (ed.), Everyone Has the Right: The Enduring Importance For a Free Press of Article 19, Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1998) 35 – 46, [12 pages/4,800 words]

Blog posts

“‘Let them drown’: Rescuing migrants at sea and the non-refoulement obligation as a case study of international law’s relationship to ‘crisis'”, EJIL: Talk!, Part I, posted 25 February 2017; Part II,  posted 27 February 2017 [4,138 words in total]

Media Appearances

Listen to Ralph commenting on Angelina Jolie Pitt’s speech on the global refugee system and the realities of who is impacted on by migration the most on the BBC World Service ‘World Have Your Say’ programme (at the 39 minutes 3 seconds mark).

Watch Ralph on BBC World News programme, ‘Global with Matthew Amroliwala’, discussing the international law of statehood.

Listen to Ralph on BBC Radio 4’s ‘The World Tonight’ on the International Court of Justice Advisory Opinion on the legality of Kosovo’s independence declaration (interview begins at 36:10).

Listen to Ralph on BBC Radio 4’s ‘The World Tonight’ on the international law of self-determination.