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Professor of International Human Rights Law, University of Nottingham

Aoife Nolan, LL.B (Dublin), PhD (EUI), joined the School of Law as Professor of International Human Rights Law in 2012. She is Academic Lead of the interdisciplinary University of Nottingham Children and Childhood Network (which includes 150 academics from 24 Schools and Departments, including 30 professors). She is also Academic Lead of the Human Rights Law Centre Summer School on Child Rights and Co-Director of the Centre's Economic and Social Rights Unit. Aoife is a member of the HRLC team on FRAME (Fostering Human Rights Among European Policies), a large-scale, four-year (2013-2017) collaborative research project funded involving 19 research centres from around the world under the EU's Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).

She has published extensively in the areas of human rights, particularly in relation to economic and social rights and children's rights, as well as on constitutional law. Her monograph Children's Socio-economic Rights, Democracy and the Courts was published by Hart Publishing in September 2011. It won the IALT Kevin Boyle Book Prize and was shortlisted for the Birks Book Prize. She is founding coordinator of the Economic and Social Rights Academic Network UKI (ESRAN-UKI). She is a member of the Editorial Boards of the Human Rights Law Review, the International Human Rights Law Review and the International Journal of Children's Rights. Her recent and forthcoming books include Human Rights and Public Finance: Budgets and the Promotion of Economic and Social Rights (Hart Publishing, 2013) (lead editor), Applying an International Human Rights Framework to State Budget Allocations: Rights and Resources (Routledge, 2014) (co-author) and Economic and Social Rights after the Global Financial Crisis (Cambridge University Press, 2014) (editor).

In addition to previous full-time positions at Durham Law School and Queen's University Belfast, she has taught at a range of international institutions, including the Geneva Academy on International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights and the Global School on Socio-economic Rights at Harvard University and the University of Groningen. During the course of her research work, she has been a Visiting Foreign Scholar at Fordham University School of Law, New York, a Visiting Research Fellow at Columbia University Law School, New York, Thomas Addis Emmet Fellow in Public Interest Law at the University of Washington, Seattle. In early 2013, she was a Visiting Researcher at the Socio-economic Rights and Administrative Justice Project, Faculty of Law, Stellenbosch University. Most recently, she was a Visiting Research Professor at the Centre for Children's Rights, School of Education, Queen's University Belfast.

Aoife has worked with and acted as an expert advisor to a wide range of international and national organisations and bodies working on human rights issues, including a range of UN special procedures, the Council of Europe and multiple national human rights institutions. She has served as Senior Legal Officer with the ESC Rights Litigation Programme of the Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions. In 2007-8, she was Human Rights Adviser to the Working Group on Economic and Social Rights, including Relevant Equality Issues of the Northern Ireland Bill of Rights Forum. In early 2008, she provided legal advice to members of the International NGO Coalition for an Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. She is a member of the Coordinating Committee of the ESCR-Net Case-Law Database. She has been an advisor to, amongst others, UNICEF UK, the Children's Commissioner for England, the Global Initiative for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and the Right to Education Project. She has previously served as a trustee of Just Fair: Justice and Fairness through Human Rights.


  • –present
    Professor of International Human Rights Law, University of Nottingham