Photo of Prof. Dr. Eva Brems, Human Rights Centre, Ghent University


Prof. Dr. Eva Brems joined the Ghent University Law Faculty in September 2000 as the first holder of the then newly created chair of Human Rights Law. Before that, she studied law at the University of Namur (Bachelor, 1989), the University of Leuven (Master, 1992) and Harvard University (LL.M., 1995). She was a PhD Researcher at the University of Leuven (1995 – 1999) and a Lecturer at Maastricht University (1999 – 2000). At Ghent University, she founded the Human Rights Centre.

Eva’s research interests cover most areas of human rights law in European and international law as well as in Belgian and comparative law, with a particular emphasis on the protection of the rights of non-dominant groups and individuals. She has a keen interest in multi- and interdisciplinary research.

Eva has been an activist in the board of several Belgian human rights NGOs, including as the Chair of the Flemish section Amnesty International (2006 – 2010), and she was briefly active in politics as a Member of the Belgian Federal Chamber of Representatives (2010 – 2014).




POSITION Professor of Human Rights Law

EMAIL Eva.Brems[@]

TELEPHONE +32 (0)9 264 69 11 (HRC secretariat)

FAX +32 (0)9 264 69 89

CONTACT HOURS On appointment

VISITING ADDRESS Paddenhoek 5, 1st floor, 9000 Ghent, Belgium

POSTAL ADDRESS Ghent University, Campus Aula, Human Rights Centre, Universiteitstraat 4, 9000 Ghent, Belgium


  • Since 1 June 2014: Hoogleraar (full professor) 100% of Human Rights Law, Ghent University, Belgium, in the position of research professor
  • Guest professor at Bahir Dar University, Ethiopia, 2017-2021
  • 1 October 2010 – 1 June 2014: Hoogleraar (full professor) 50% of Human Rights Law, Ghent University, Belgium
  • 2009 – 2014: European Research Council Starting Grant holder
  • July 2010 – May 2014: Member of the Belgian federal Parliament
  • 1 October 2008 – 1 October 2010: Hoofddocent 100%, of Human Rights Law and non-Western Law, Ghent University, Belgium
  • October 2005 – September 2007: Docent (100%) of Human Rights Law and non-Western Law, Ghent University, Belgium
  • October 2000 – September 2005: Docent (First rank of Professor) of Human Rights Law (40%), Ghent University, Belgium
  • October 2001 – September 2005: Post-Doctoral Researcher, FWO (Research Foundation – Flanders) at Human Rights Centre, Ghent University
  • October 1999 – September 2001. Research Assistant (20%), Institute of Constitutional Law, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium
  • September 1999 – December Lecturer of Constitutional and Administrative Law, in particular Comparative Administrative Law, University of Maastricht, Netherlands
  • October 1995 – August 1999. Doctoral Researcher, Fellow of Fonds Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek – Vlaanderen (Research Foundation – Flanders), at the Institute for Human Rights, Law Department, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
  • September 1992 – June 1994. Project Researcher, Law Department Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, project “Burger en Rechtsbescherming” (“Citizens and Judicial Protection”): Modelcode beginselen algemeen procesrecht (Model Code of Principles of General Procedural Law). Supervisors: prof. P. Van Orshoven and prof. P. Lemmens


University Degrees

  • Graduate Studies: Law School
  • Candidature en droit: Facultés Universitaires Notre Dame de la Paix (FUNDP), Namur, 1989: magna cum laude
  • licentie rechtsgeleerdheid: Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (KULeuven) 1992: magna cum laude
  • Master of Laws: Harvard Law School, U.S.A., 1994 – 1995 as Van Waeyenbergh fellow of the Belgian American Educational Foundation
  • D. in Law: Doctor in de Rechten: KU Leuven, 29 October 1999. Thesis: “Human Rights: Universality and Diversity”. Supervisor: Prof. Paul Lemmens


  • Advanced Study of Human Rights Law
  • Recht & Gender (Law & Gender)
  • Recht & Multiculturaliteit (Law & Multiculturality)
  • Legal Clinic Human Rights


  • Member of selection panel ‘Law & Criminalogy’ of FWO (Research Fund Flanders) 2018
  • Member of the Research Council, Ghent University
  • Member of the Expert Committee on Internationalisation, Ghent University
  • Member of the Human Rights Policy Committee, Ghent University
  • Member of the ‘Scholars at Risk’ Steering Group, Ghent University
  • Executive Committee member and chair of the roundtable committee, International Association of Constitutional Law
  • Board member, Plan International Belgium
  • Member of the Honorary Council, Vereniging voor de Verenigde Naties
  • Member of the Errera Council for advice on foreign affairs to the Flemish adminstration

Involvement in law journals

  • Member of the editorial board and free submissions editor, Human Rights & International Legal Discourse
  • Member of the editorial board, European Journal of Human Rights/Journal Européen des Droits de l’Homme
  • Member of the editorial board, Tijdschrift voor Bestuurswetenschappen en Publiekrecht
  • Member of the editorial board, Belgian Review of International Law
  • Member of the editorial board, Tegenspraak
  • Member of the advisory board, Human Rights Quarterly
  • Member of the advisory board, International Journal of Children’s Rights
  • Member of the advisory board, Journal of Constitutional Law (Turkey)
  • Member of the advisory board, Journal of Diversity and Gender Studies



  • Integrated and cross-cutting perspectives on international human rights law
  • Legal reasoning in the European Court of Human Rights case law
  • Universality and diversity in human rights law
  • Human rights and tradition-based law/legal pluralism
  • Human rights of specific groups (women, children, minorities…)


  • Janneke Gerards & Eva Brems, eds, Procedural review in European fundamental rights cases, Cambridge University Press, 2017, 287 p.
  • Giselle Corradi, Eva Brems & Mark Goodale, eds, Human Rights Encounter Legal Pluralism, Normative and Empirical Approaches, Hart Publishing, 2017.
  • Eva Brems, Ellen Desmet & Wouter Vandenhole, eds, Children’s Rights Law in the Global Human Rights Landscape: Isolation, inspiration, integration? Routledge, 2017, 312 p.
  • Eva Brems and Laurens Lavrysen, ‘Don’t use a sledgehammer to crack a nut’: less restrictive means in the case law of the European Court of Human Rights’, Human Rights Law Review 15 (1), 2015, 1-30.
  • Eva Brems, ‘Should Pluriform Human Rights Become One ? Exploring the Benefits of Human Rights Integration’, European Journal of Human Rights, 2014(4), 447-470.
  • Eva Brems (ed.), The Experiences of Face Veil Wearers in Europe and the Law, Cambridge University Press, 2014, 307 p.
  • Eva Brems and Laurens Lavrysen, “Procedural Justice in Human Rights Adjudication: the European Court of Human Rights”, Human Rights Quarterly, 2013, 176-200.
  • Eva Brems and Janneke Gerards (eds.), Shaping Rights in the ECHR;The Role of the European Court of Human Rights in Determining the Scope of Human Rights, Cambridge University Press, 2013, 367 p.
  • Eva Brems (ed.), Diversity and European Human Rights; Rewriting Judgments of the ECHR, Cambridge University Press, 2012, 470 p.


All publications by Prof. Dr. Eva Brems are listed in the ‘Ghent University Academic Bibliography’, EvaBrems@BiblioUGent.

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