Dame Rosalyn Higgins GBE QC

Engaging with international law (plenary session, day 1)

Dame Rosalyn Higgins GBE QC was a Judge of the International Court of Justice, the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, from 1995 to 2009 and its President from February 2006 to February 2009. Prior to being elected to the International Court, Dame Rosalyn was Professor of International Law at the University of Kent at Canterbury (1978-1981) and Professor of International Law at the University of London (London School of Economics) (1981-1995). She practised in public international law and petroleum law before English courts and international courts and tribunals, taking silk in 1986 and becoming a Bencher of the Inner Temple in 1989. She was a Member of the UN Committee on Human Rights (1985-1995) and President of the British Institute of International and Comparative Law (2009-2015).

Dame Rosalyn has received numerous honorary doctorates and awards, including the Chevalier d’Ordre des Palmes Académiques (1988) and the Balzan Prize for International Law since 1945 (2007). She is a member of the Institut de droit international. In 2009 she published Themes and Theories: Selected Essays, Speeches, and Writings in International Law (Oxford University Press) and in 2018 Oppenheim’s International Law: The United Nations (two volumes, Oxford University Press, with Webb, Akande, Sivakumaran, and Sloan), which was awarded the ASIL Certificate of Merit for high technical craftsmanship and utility to practicing lawyers and scholars.