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Professor of International Law at the University of Tartu


  • 2002 – Dr.iur., Faculty of Law of the Humboldt University Berlin 
  • 1999 - LL.M., Georgetown University Law Center 
  • 1998 – LL.B., Faculty of Law of the University of Tartu 
  • 1995-1996 – Exchange student at the Faculty of Law of the University of Göttingen, Germany


  • September 2019-January 2020  - Visiting Professor at the Institute of International Law of Peace and Armed Conflict (IFHV); University of Bochum
  • September 2017-May 2018  - Fellow at the Wilson Center and at the Kennan Institute; Washington, DC
  • 2017- Member of the Permanent Court of Arbitration, The Hague
  • 2013-2017 - Director of the Estonian Foreign Policy Institute
  • 2013-2014 - Emile Noël Fellow, NYU School of Law
  • 2009 - Professor of International Law, School of Law of the University of Tartu; Since 2013, also Head of the Department of Public Law
  • 2002-2012 - International and European Law adviser of the Chancellor of Justice of the Republic of Estonia (part-time)
  • 2006-2007 - Post-doc Fellow at the University of Tokyo, Graduate School for Law and Politics
  • 2005-2009 - Associate Professor of International Law and European Union Law, University of Tartu
  • 2004-2005 - Post-doc Hauser Fellow at NYU School of Law
  • 2003-2005 - Lecturer of International Law and EU Law, University of Tartu
  • 1999– 2003 – Contractual Lecturer of International Law and EU Law, University of Tartu
  • 1997-1998 - Research assistant at the Institute of Public Law, University of Tartu


  • 2017 Peregrinus Prize of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences
  • 2017 Estonian National Science Award in Social Sciences
  • 2016 Marshall D. Shulman Book Prize, honourable mention; Association for Slavic, East European and Eurasian Studies (ASEEES); for “Russian Approaches to International Law”
  • 2006-2007 Post-doc scholarship of the Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS)
  • 2004–2005 Hauser Research Scholarship; NYU School of Law
  • 2003 Doctoral thesis award of the “Library Friends of the Faculty of Law of Humboldt University Berlin”
  • 2000-2002 Konrad Adenauer Foundation‘s PhD studies stipend
  • 1999-2000 PhD studies stipend of the Studienstiftung des Abgeordnetenhauses von Berlin
  • 1998-1999 Edmund S. Muskie scholarship for LL.M. studies at Georgetown
  • 1995-1996 Tartu-Göttingen cooperation scholarship of the University of Göttingen


  • 2019 - Estonian Constitutional Law Foundation at the Academy of Sciences (Riigiõiguse sihtkapital); member of the board
  • 2015 - Institut de Droit International; member
  • 2013 - Estonian Academy of Sciences; member


  • 2020 - Riigiõiguse aastaraamat (Yearbook of Estonian Constitutional Law), member of the editorial board
  • 2019 - Osteuropa Recht, member of the academic advisory board
  • 2019 - Journal of the History of International Law; member of the academic advisory board
  • 2018- – Max Planck Encyclopedia of International Law; member of the advisory board
  • 2016- Revue of Central and East European Law; member of the editorial board
  • 2014- Baltic Yearbook of International Law (at Leiden/Boston: Brill), one of the three editors-in-chief
  • 2013- Studies in the History of International Law, book series at Brill; member of the editorial board
  • 2009- European Yearbook on Human Rights, member of the Scientific Advisory Board



1) Monographs

  • Russian Approaches to International Law, Oxford University Press, 2015
  • “Illegal Annexation and State Continuity: The Case of the Incorporation of the Baltic States by the USSR. A Study of the Tension between Normativity and Power in International Law”, Leiden/Boston: Brill (Martinus Nijhoff), 2003. The Estonian and Russian translations of this book were published by Tartu University Press in 2005. (The second edition of the book is forthcoming with Brill in 2022).

2) Edited Books

  • Russia and the European Court of Human Rights: The Strasbourg Effect, L. Mälksoo and W. Benedek (eds.), Cambridge University Press, 2017
  • Russia and European Human-Rights Law: The Rise of the Civilizational Argument, L. Mälksoo (ed.), Leiden/Boston: Brill, 2014
  • Põhiseaduse kommentaarid (Commentaries on the Estonian Constitution, ed. by Ü. Madise), responsible editor/author of the chapter on treaties and foreign relations, Tallinn: Juura, 2020

3) Articles and Chapters in Books

  • “Post-Soviet Eurasia, uti possidetis and the Clash Between Universal and Russian-led Regional Understandings of International Law”, 53 New York University Journal of International Law and Politics 2021, pp 787-822
  • “Russia’s 2020 Constitutional Amendments and International Law”, 115 American Journal of International Law 2021 No 1, pp 78-93
  • “The Russian Concept of International Law as Imperial Legacy”, in Peter Hilpold (ed.) European International Law Traditions, Heidelberg: Springer, 2021, pp 261-277
  • “The European Court of Human Rights and the Qualification of Soviet Crimes in the Baltic States”, 39 Human Rights Law Journal 2019, pp 19-22
  • “The Treaties of Brest-Litovsk, Versailles and Moscow: Contesting Sovereignty and Hegemony in Eastern Europe in 1919-1939”, 62 German Yearbook of International Law 2019, pp 189-209
  • “The Annexation of Crimea and Balance of Power in International Law”, 30 European Journal of International Law 2019 No 1, pp 303-319
  • “Civilizational Diversity as Challenge to the (False) Universality of International Law”, 9 Asian Journal of International Law 2019, pp 155-164
  • “A Necessary Voice: Small States, International Law, and the UN Security Council” (in co-authorship with Adam Lupel), New York: International Peace Institute (IPI), 2019
  • “The Controversy over Human Rights, UN Covenants and the Dissolution of the Soviet Union”, 61 Japanese Yearbook of International Law 2018, pp 260-283
  • “Case Law in Russian Approaches to International Law”, in: A. Roberts, P.B. Stephan, P.-H. Verdier, M. Versteeg (eds) Comparative International Law, Oxford: OUP, pp 337-352
  • “Sources of International Law in the 19th Century European Tradition: Insights from Practice and Theory”, in: J.d’Aspremont, S. Besson (eds) The Oxford Handbook of the Sources of International Law, Oxford: OUP, 2017, pp 146-162
  • “Introduction. Russia, Strasbourg, and the Paradox of a Human Rights Backlash”, in: L. Mälksoo, W. Benedek (eds) Russia and the European Court of Human Rights: the Strasbourg Effect, Cambridge: CUP, 2017, pp 3-25
  • “The Soviet Approach to the Right of Peoples to Self-Determination: Russia’s Farewell to Jus Publicum Europaeum”, in 19 Journal of the History of International Law 2017, pp 200-218
  • “Die Lehre des Völkerrechts: ein Blick aus Estland”, in: S. Hobe, T. Marauhn (eds) Lehre des internationalen Rechts – zeitgemäß?, Berichte der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Internationales Recht, Band 48, Heidelberg: C.F. Müller, 2017, pp 139-142
  • “Conciliation within the Framework of Dispute Settlement Procedures: An East European Perspective”, in: C. Tomuschat, R. Pisillo Mazzeschi, D. Thürer (eds) Conciliation in International Law. The OSCE Court of Conciliation and Arbitration, Leiden/Boston: Brill, 2016, 12-25
  • “Russia’s Constitutional Court Defies the European Court of Human Rights”, 12 European Constitutional Law Review 2016, 377-395
  • “International Legal Theory in Russia: A Civilizational Perspective, or: Can Individuals be Subjects of International Law?”, in: F. Hoffmann, A. Orford (eds.) The Oxford Handbook of the Theory of International Law, Oxford University Press, 2016, 257-275
  • “Comparative International Law: Lessons Learned from Russia”, in: Proceedings of the 109th Annual Meeting of the American Society of International Law, ed. by M. Hakimi et al., Washington, DC: ASIL, 2016, pp 93-96
  • “F.F. Martens and the European Tradition of International Law: When Russia Was an Integral Part of the European Tradition of International Law”, 25 European Journal of International Law 2014, 811-829
  • “The Human Rights Concept of the Russian Orthodox Church and Its Patriarch Kirill I”, in: W. Benedek et al (eds.) European Yearbook on Human Rights 2013, Vienna: Neuer Wissenschaftlicher Verlag, 2013, 403-416
  • “Russia-Europe”, in: B. Fassbender, A. Peters (eds.), The Oxford Handbook of the History of International Law, Oxford University Press, 2012, 764-786
  • “Konstantin Markin v Russia”, European Court of Human Rights, 106 American Journal of International Law 2012, 836-842
  • “The History of International Trade Law in the Work of Russian International Lawyer, Friedrich Martens (1845-1909): from Unequal Treaties to Protectionism and Free Trade”, in: R. Klump, M. Vec (eds) Völkerrecht und Weltwirtschaft im 19. Jahrhundert, Baden-Baden: Nomos, 2012, pp 51-58
  • “International Law between Universality and Fragmentation. The Historical Case of Russia”, in: A. Orakhelashvili (ed.) Research Handbook on the Theory and History of International Law, Edward Elgar Publishing, 2011, 456-477
  • Kononov v Latvia (European Court of Human Rights, Grand Chamber, 17 May 2010), 105 American Journal of International Law 2011, pp. 101-108
  • “Contemporary Russian Perspectives on Non-State Actors. Fear of the Loss of State Sovereignty”, in: J. d’Aspremont (ed.) Participants in the International Legal System. Multiple Perspectives on Non-State Actors, London: Routledge, 2011, 126-138
  • “Continuity and Change in the Russian Federation’s Human Rights Policies in the Fight against Terror”, in: M. Goodhart, A. Mihr (eds.) Human Rights in the 21st Century. Continuity and Change since 9/11, New York: Palgrave, 86-104
  • “Great Powers Then and Now: Security Council Reform and Responses to Threats to Peace and Security”, in: P.G. Danchin, H. Fischer (eds.) United Nations Reform and the New Collective Security, Cambridge University Press, 2010, 94-113
  • “International Law in Russian Textbooks – What’s in the Doctrinal Pluralism?” Göttingen Journal of International Law No 1(2) 2009, 279-290
  • “The History of International Legal Theory in Russia: a Civilizational Dialogue with Europe”, 19 European Journal of International Law 2008, No 1, 211-232
  • „The Science of International Law and the Concept of Politics. The Arguments and Lives of the International Law Professors at the University of Dorpat/Iur’ev/Tartu 1855-1985“, 76 British Year Book of International Law 2005, Oxford University Press, 2006, 383-502
  • “Which Continuity: The Tartu Peace Treaty of 2 February 1920, the Estonian-Russian Border Treaties of 18 May 2005, and the Legal Debate about Estonia’s Status in International Law”, in: Archiv des Völkerrechts 2005, pp 513-525
  • “The Context of International Legal Arguments. ‘Positivist’ International Law Scholar August von Bulmerincq (1822-1890) and His Concept of Politics”, in: 7 Journal of the History of International Law 2005, pp 181-209
  • “1912 and 2005: The Theory of the Legal Inequality of States of the Russian International Law Scholar Vladimir Hrabar (1865-1956)”, in: Proceedings of the 99th Annual Meeting of the American Society of International Law, Washington, DC: ASIL, 2005, pp 310-312.
  • “Von der Demokratie bis zur Diktatur: Ein verborgener Dialog zwischen Artur-Tõeleid Kliimann und Carl Schmitt“, in: 43 Der Staat 2004, pp 57-82
  • „State Responsibility and the Challenge of the Realist Paradigm: the Demand of Baltic Victims of Soviet Mass Repressions for Compensation from Russia”, in: I. Ziemele (ed.) Baltic Yearbook of International Law 2003, Leiden: Brill, pp 57-76
  • „State Identity, Deconstruction and ‚Functional Splitting‘: The Case of Illegal Annexations”, in: G. Loibl (ed.) Austrian Review of International and European Law 2002, Leiden: Brill, pp 91-110
  • “Soviet Genocide? Communist Mass Deportations in the Baltic States and International Law”14 Leiden Journal of International Law 2001, 757-787
  • “Professor Uluots, the Estonian Government in Exile and the Continuity of the Republic of Estonia in International Law”, 69 Nordic Journal of International Law 2010, pp 289-316
  • „Language Rights in International Law: Why the Phoenix is Still in the Ashes“, 12 Florida Journal of International Law 2000, pp. 431-465
  • “Justice, Order and Anarchy: The Right of Peoples to Self-Determination and the Conflicting Values in International Law”, 4 Juridica International/Tartu University Law Review 1999, pp 75-79
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