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Amsterdam International Law Clinic

Last modified on 27-05-2024 20:26
Through the Amsterdam Law clinics, Master's students get the opportunity to work on cases of public interest on behalf of clients.
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What is your study programme?

The Amsterdam International Law Clinic provides legal services on all questions on international law. Cases taken on by the Amsterdam International Law Clinic may cover topics such as international human rights, international criminal law, international environmental law, international fiscal law or any other topic within international law.

It was established to meet the needs of students for more experience in dealing with real cases. In international legal practice, a growing interest exists for lawyers with a deeper understanding of, and experience in, the functioning and the application of international and European law. 

This clinic offers you the possibility to gain such experience and at the same time to make contact with your future profession in a direct manner. This co-operation between organisations, companies and law-firms on the one hand, and students of international law on the other, is exceptional in Dutch legal practice. The Amsterdam International Law Clinic is therefore unique in the Netherlands. 

An image of a string of yellow paper people, holding each others hands.

Clinical work

In the Amsterdam International Law Clinic you will acquire the knowledge needed to build up a solid case. You will also be directly involved in providing legal advice on international law for clients for which the students conduct legal research, provide legal advice and draft legal documents. The clinical work is conducted in a team of 3-5 students.

Students are closely supervised by faculty staff from the Departments of Public International Law and European Law, as well as the Amsterdam Center of International LawExternal link (ACIL). As a clinic student, you will receive intensive, hands-on, guidance on how to conduct legal research, and how to write a legal opinion for external clients. Emphasis is placed on professionalism, high quality work, teamwork, and respect for confidentiality.

Participation in the Amsterdam Law Clinics has allowed me to develop invaluable skills in communication, research, teamwork and drafting that will be useful throughout my professional career.
Sophie van DongenBusiness and Human Rights Clinic, 2020/2021

Requirements, eligibility and application

The Amsterdam International Law Clinic is only open for students enrolled in:

  • Track Public International Law
  • Track International Trade and Investment Law
  • Track International and Transnational Criminal Law

Should a particular case or project in the Amsterdam International Law Clinic provide the possibility for students from other Masters to participate, this will be communicated through the clinic’s website informing other Master's students about the possibility to apply as well.

Other requirements are:

  • You are available at least 10 hours per week;
  • You have a strong work ethic, excellent communication and English-writing skills, and a genuine interest in international law.

Check out the specifics on how to apply.

Upcoming projects

In the first semester of academic year 2024/2025, the Amsterdam International Law Clinic (AILC) will run several projects that deal with issues of public international law: 

  • A recurrent project aimed at providing research support to Professor Donders in her work for the UN Human Rights Committee, see also below under 'Prior Projects'. The AILC is looking for a group of 4-5 highly motivated students. The students should possess sufficient knowledge of International Human Rights Law and the UN treaty body system, as attested to through prior academic courses taken, or experience with human rights-related extra-curricular activities/work. Diversity in the composition of the group is essential. 
  • A multi-year research project aimed at assessing the possibility of bringing a legal claim against the State of the Netherlands for reparations for slavery in present-day Suriname and the Caribbean part of the Kingdom. Proficiency is Dutch language is a bonus, but not a requirement. 

Prior projects

In the first semester 23-24, the Amsterdam International Law Clinic began a multi-year research project commissioned by the law firm Prakken d'Oliveira into the possibility of a legal claim against the State of the Netherlands for reparations for slavery in present-day Suriname and the Caribbean part of the Kingdom.

The Clinic has also worked on the project on ‘Access to Justice for Gun ViolenceExternal link’ in cooperation with the Asser Institute and the Mexican Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Students have developed a memorandum on legal remedies available to gun victims across European jurisdictions. 

In addition, Professor Yvonne DondersExternal link is member of the UN Human Rights Committee as of January 2023. The Amsterdam International Law Clinic runs a recurrent project to provide her with research support. A clinic team assists her in preparing the sessions of the HRC. During these sessions, several State reports as well as individual communications will be discussed. There can also be discussions on (draft) general comments. 

Other examples of matters the Amsterdam International Law Clinic has been involved in include:

  • A project addressing the topic of technology transfer and International Investment Agreements.
  • research for and drafting of the text for a speech to the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment;
  • research for various NGO's into possibilities to force parties to take responsibilities for war crimes in certain countries and the possibilities to administer universal justice to these cases.


Contact us

For any questions regarding the Amsterdam International Law Clinic, send us an e-mailExternal link or contact Vid PrislanExternal link

Contact former clinic students

If you're interested in more hands-on information about the clinic and experiences from former Amsterdam International Law Clinic students, you can contact any of the following former students. Send us an e-mailExternal link and we will provide you with the relevant contact information. 

Ania Jermak
Manon Picard
Mei-An Prantl
Alan Feler
Emma Wouters
Sophia Giardini
Julie Nechat
Lili Tammepuu
Nuria de Jong
Bahar Babapour
Franca Eckstein
Leila Katšajeva 

What our alumni say about the Amsterdam Law Clinics:

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