CoE logo
Venice Logo

Prof. Regina Kiener

University of Zurich, Switzerland


Nationality:     Swiss



Academic qualifications

2000                Habilitation, Venia Docendi in Constitutional Law, Administrative Law and Procedural Law, University of Bern

1994                Dr. iur, University of Bern (winner Walter Hug award for outstanding thesis)

1989                Bar Exam (Rechtsanwältin)

1982 - 89        Legal studies, University of Bern

1981-82          Studies in medieval history and history of art, University of Bern


Current and previous positions

2009 -               Full Professor of Constitutional and Administrative Law, University of Zurich

2015                  Visiting Scholar, Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg

2012                  Visiting Scholar, University of British Columbia, Vancouver CA

2009 -               Human Rights Centre, University of Zurich, member of the board

2001 - 09          Full Professor of Public Law, Faculty of Law, University of Bern

2001- 09           Member of the Swiss National Science Foundation Research Committee, University of Bern branch

2000 - 01          Lecturer in Public Law, University of Basel

2000 - 01          Lecturer in Constitutional Law, University of Bern

1999                  Lecturer in Public Law, University of Fribourg

1998                  Visiting Scholar / Research Fellow, University of California, Berkeley

1996                  U.S.A. law program, University of California, Davis and Berkeley

1994 - 96          Lecturer in Public Law, University of Bern

1990 - 94          Graduate Research Assistant, Department of Public Law, University of Bern

1990 - 91          Research Assistant, Chancellery of the State of Bern

1989                  Legal Associate



German (mother tongue), English, French, Italian


Additional professional experience

  • Visiting Professor, Hebrew University, Jerusalem (2011), graduate course on “The Constitutional Framework of End-of-life-decisions”
  • Lecturer, Centre of Competence for Public Management (CCPM), University of Bern (2003-09); Swiss Judges Academy (2009-12); Swiss Police Institute (from 2013)
  • Served as an expert for the Swiss Parliament, for the Swiss Government and for the Federal Administration, for cantonal and communal parliaments, governments and higher cantonal courts (on issues regarding independence of the judiciary, administration of justice, status of judges, removal of judges; parliamentary law; on human rights issues, refugee law, law on aliens, procedural law, etc.), among others: consultant to the Federal Department of Justice, on the evaluation of revised federal procedural law (2007-2013); consultant to the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, on the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (2013); consultant to Transparency International Switzerland, on the integrity of the Swiss judiciary (2011); consultant to OSCE / Max Planck Minerva Research Group, on judicial independence in Eastern Europe, South Caucasus and Central Asia (2010); consultant to the Federal Parliament Judicial Committee, on the election and re-election of judges (2008, 2010); consultant to USAID on court organization in Macedonia (2004), consultant to USAID on the status of public prosecutors in Macedonia (2005)
  • Member of the Council of Europe Commission for Democracy through Law (“Venice Commission”, from 2013); served, inter alia, as rapporteur on BiH, Ukraine (recurring), Georgia (recurring), Hungary, Tunisia (recurring), Italy, France, Poland and Turkey (recurring)
  • Member of the Federal Arbitration Tribunal for decisions of the Swiss University Conference SUK (2010-2014): substitute judge at the Court of Judicial Supervision and Administration (Justizgericht), Canton of Aargau (from 2013)
  • Member of the Council of Europe Ad hoc Committee of Experts on legal, operational and technical standards for e-voting (2015-16)
  • Member of several first-instance administrative committees (Swiss Federal Gaming Board 2002-08; Swiss Takeover Board, 2009-2014)
  • Member of the admissions committee for the corps diplomatique within the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (from 2014)
  • Founder and co-editor of the Swiss Journal for Judges (
  • Co-director (with Giovanni Biaggini, University of Zurich) of a research project within the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNF) sinergia framework “Fundamental Principles of Judicial Management in Switzerland” (2012-2015)
  • Co-director (with Bernhard Rütsche, University of Lucerne) of a research project within the SNF National Research Programme NRP 67 “End of Life” (2012-2015)
  • Co-director (with Walter Kälin, University of Bern) of research projects within the SNF SCOPES framework (Scientific Co-operation between Eastern Europe and Switzerland): seminar in constitutional law in Tbilisi,Georgia (2009); graduate course on the legal framework of the judiciary, Tbilisi,Georgia (2006-07); project on regionalism, Tbilisi,Georgia and Batumi,Georgia (2001-03)
  • Teaches constitutional law, human rights law and procedural law, has published widely on these issues. A complete list of publications is available online at:
  • Member of the board of: International Commission of Jurists, Swiss section,;   materra, Foundation Woman and Health, Freiburg, Germany (Stiftung Frau und Gesundheit), ; Information Centre for Undocumented Migrants, Bern (Berner Beratungsstelle für Sans Papiers),
  • Member of: Swiss Judges Association (Schweizerische Vereinigung der Richterinnen und Richter); Swiss Society for Parliamentary Issues (Schweizerische Gesellschaft für Parlamentsfragen); Swiss Association of Jurists (Schweizerischer Juristenverein); Centre for Legislative Studies, University of Zurich (Zentrum für Rechtsetzungslehre)
© Council of Europe 2007-2024