Laurens Lavrysen


Laurens Lavrysen is a postdoctoral research fellow, connected to the Human Rights Centre of Ghent University since 2010. In April 2016, he successfully defended his PhD “Human Rights in a Positive State: Rethinking the Relationship between Positive and Negative Obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights” (published by Intersentia).

He has written on various topics in the area of ECHR law, including on the positive obligations doctrine, the principle of proportionality, the notion of procedural justice and poverty as a human rights issue. He also has a research interest in the area of the history of the ECHR, in particular in Belgium (see the issue of The Legal History Review). He is a coach at the Ghent University Human Rights and Migration Law Clinic and has contributed to various third party interventions submitted by the Human Rights Centre to the European Court of Human Rights. He moreover is the co-editor of the Strasbourg Observers blog and editor-in-chief of the Flemish Journal for Human Rights (Tijdschrift voor Mensenrechten).



POSITION Postdoctoral Research Fellow

EMAIL Laurens.Lavrysen[@]

TELEPHONE +32 (0)9 264 97 61

SECRETARIAT +32 (0)9 264 69 11

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


  • Postdoctoral Research Fellow (FWO) Human Rights Centre, Ghent University (Oct 2018 – ongoing)
  • Postdoctoral Research Fellow,  Human Rights Centre, Ghent University (May 2016 – September 2018)
  • Fellow Research Foundation Flanders (FWO), Human Rights Centre, Ghent University October 2011 – 2016
  • Teaching Assistant, Department of Public Law, Ghent University October 2010 – September 2011


  • Master in Law, Ghent University (2010)
  • Bachelor in Law, Ghent University (2008)


  • Master Programme in Human Rights, Universidade Eduardo Mondlane (Maputo, Mozambique, 4 – 9 March 2013 & 24 – 28 February 2014) (introduction to the European Convention on Human Rights)
  • Master Programmes in Human Rights & Federalism and International Human Rights Law, Ethiopian Civil Service University (Addis Abeba, Ethiopia, 26 – 30 May 2014) (introduction to the European Convention on Human Rights)
  • Advanced Study in Human Rights, Ghent University (classes on children’s rights (2010-11 and 2011-12), the right to life (2011-12 and 2013-14), torture (2016-17) , legitimacy of the ECtHR (2017-18 and 2018-19), and poverty and human rights (2014-2015 and 2016-17)).
  • Legal clinical: coach of teams of students working on academic freedom (2017-18 and 2018-19) and on access to social benefits (2016-17)
  • Summer School on Health and Migration, Ghent University (class on Migration & Human Rights, 2013 and 2014)
  • Wetenschapsweek, workshop “In Straatsburg staat een grote weegschaal” (2011 and 2013) (introduction to the European Convention on Human Rights for high school students).


  • Regular contributor to and co-editor to the Strasbourg Observers blog
  • Editor-in-chief of Tijdschrift voor Mensenrechten
  • Regular contributor to Juristenkrant
  • Regular contributor to recent developments section of Journal Européen des Droits de l’Homme / European Journal of Human Rights (2013-2014)
  • Regular contributor to recent ECtHR developments sections of Tijdschrift voor Vreemdelingenrecht (2013-2014)
  • Third party intervention in ECtHR Grand Chamber case of Söderman v. Sweden (2013)


  • Human rights law
  • The European Court of Human Rights
  • Positive obligations under human rights treaties
  • The scope of human rights
  • Socio-economic rights
  • Poverty as a human rights issue
  • Procedural justice (social psychology)
  • Proportionality analysis
  • Less restrictive alternative
  • Implementation of ECtHR judgments


  • Laurens Lavrysen:  Human Rights in a Positive State – Rethinking the Relationship between Positive and Negative Obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights (published PhD, Intersentia, 2016).
  • Laurens Lavrysen: “‘Strasbourg was something new, it was an adventure’ – A history of the Belgian cases before the European Court of Human Rights in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s”, The Legal History Review (2018), no. 3-4 [NEW].
  • Laurens Lavrysen: “Causation and Positive Obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights: A Reply to Vladislava Stoyanova”, Human Rights Law Review (2018), no. 4 [NEW].
  • “Protection by the law: the positive obligation to develop a legal framework to adequately protect ECHR rights” in Y. Haeck & E. Brems, Human Rights and civil liberties in the 21st century (Springer 2014)
  • Laurens Lavrysen: “Strengthening the Protection of Human Rights of Persons Living in Poverty under the ECHR”, Netherlands Quarterly of Human Rights (2015), no. 3.
  • Eva Brems and Laurens Lavrysen: “Procedural justice in human rights adjudication: the European Court of Human Rights”, Human Rights Quarterly (2013), no. 1
  • 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 (2015), no. 1


All publications by Laurens Lavrysen are listed in the ‘Ghent University Academic Bibliography’, LaurensLavrysen@BiblioUGent.

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