Sharon Weill
07 82 57 52 05

Dr Sharon Weill (Phd, University of Geneva) is an Associate Professor of international law at the American University of Paris and teaches at Sciences Po, Paris (PSIA). In 2019 she was nominated by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees to serve as a judge in the French Asylum Courts (CNDA).  Prior to that, she worked for several years as a research fellow at the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian and Human Rights law and was coordinating the legal discipline in the master program in humanitarian action of the University of Geneva. 

Her particular field of interest is the relationship between international and domestic law, the politics of international law, law and conflicts and the role of national courts - topics on which she has published numerous articles and book chapters. Her research method combines legal doctrine with socio-political approaches including trial ethnography.  She is also legal advisor to various NGOs and UN bodies for which she gives training seminars.

She is the author of the book The Role of National Courts in Applying International Humanitarian Law (Oxford University Press, 2014) and co-editor of the book Prosecuting the President - The Trial of Hissène Habré (Oxford University Press, 2020).

At PSIA she directs the clinic/capstone course "International law in Action.” In May 2018, Dr Weill and her students submitted a report to the UN Special Rapporteur on human Rights and Counter Terrorism during her official visit in France. For more on the course click here.

Research projects  

1.  Co-Director of the pluri-disciplinary research project on counter terrorism trials in France   financed by the French Ministry of Justice (GIP): « Etude pluridisciplinaire de l'activité de la cour d'assises compétente pour les affaires de terrorisme (2017-2019) ».

2. Co-director of a joint Sciences-Po/UC Berkeley research project funded by the Berkeley-France foundation on the international trial of Former Chadian President Hissen Habre. Co editor with K Carlson and K Seelinger Prosecuting the President - The Trial of Hissène Habré (Oxford University Press, 2020). The research was done with the participation of PSIA’s students, who went to Dakar to conduct interviews with the actors of the tribunal.

3. With the support of the Suisse National Science Foundation, she did research at the University of California, Berkeley, on the military commission at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and the Israeli military courts in the occupied Palestinian territories (2015-2016). 


 Sharon Weill's publications include:

  • Book

The President on Trial: Prosecuting Hissène Habré, edited by Sharon Weill, Kim Thuy Seelinger and Kerstin Carlson (Oxford University Press, 2020).

The Role of National Courts in Applying International Humanitarian Law (Oxford University Press, 2014).

The book was reviewed by S. Darcy in the International Review of the Red Cross (2015), 96 (895/896); Kreiger in the German Yearbook of International law (2015) and M Ventura in the Journal of International Criminal Justice (2016)

  • Research Report

“Les filieres djihadistes en process: Approche ethnographique des audiences criminelles et correctionnelles (2017-2019)” (“Jihadisits on Trial: An Ethnographic Approach to Criminal Trials (2017-2019”): Report for the French Ministry of Justice co-authored with Christiane Besnier (anthropologist), Antoine Mégie (sociologist) and Denis Salas (judge). The report is the result of 36 months of empirical research in court. It was published on the Ministry’s website in March 2020 (GIP/CNRS):

 “French counter-terrorism: Administrative and Penal Avenues” - Report written with the student for the official visit of the UN Special Rapporteur on Counter-Terrorism and Human Rights (May 2018). The report was cited in the report of the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism following her visit to France. (UN doc A/HRC/40/52/Ad, .4, 8 May 2019, note 50)

Terrorisme et état d’urgence - Jurisprudence des hautes juridictions françaises (Avril 2017)  (report done for Open Society with the students)

  • Book Chapters

“Military Courts and Terrorism: The 9/11 Trial before the Guantanamo Bay Military Jurisdiction”, in B. Saul, Research Handbook on International Law and Terrorism (Edward Elgar, 2020).

The Situation of Palestine in Wonderland: An Investigation into ICC’s Impact in Israel” in C. Stahn and M. Bergsmo (eds) Quality Control in Preliminary Examination: Reviewing Impact, Policies and Practices (Torkel Opsahl Academic EPublisher, 2018).

“Arguing Civilian Rights and IHL Standards in National Courts” in Mark Lattimer and Philip Sands (eds) The Grey Zone: Civilian Protection Between Human Rights and the Laws of War (Hart/Bloomsbury, 2018), p. 231-250.

“The Administration of Justice through Military Tribunals: The Decaux Principles and the Military Commissions in Guantanamo Bay” (with M. Robinson) in Olivier de Frouville et al (eds), Source et regimes du droit international des droit de l’Homme - Melange a l’honneur de Pr Emmanuel Decaux (Paris, Pedone, 2017). 

“Communication with the Outside World” in A. Clapham, M. Sassoli and P. Gaeta (eds), A Commentary to the Geneva Conventions (Oxford University Press, 2015).

“The 2014 Gaza War: Reflections on Jus ad Bellum, Jus in Bello and Accountability” in A. Bellal (ed), The War Report 2014 (Oxford University Press, forthcoming, 2015) (with V. Azarova).

“The Use of Weapons under International Humanitarian Law”, in S. Casey-Maslen (ed), Weapons under International Human Rights Law (Cambridge University Press, 2014), p. 240-280 (with S. Casey-Maslen).

“The Investigation Mechanism of Torture Claims in Israel: An Analysis of the 2012 GSS Investigation Decision and the Türkel Report”, in Stuart Melsen (ed), The War Report 2012 (Oxford University Press, 2013).

“Israel Palestine - International law updates”, in N. Erakat and M. Rabbani (eds) Aborted State? The UN Initiative and New Palestinian Junctures (Washington, Tadween Publishing, 2013).

“The follow up to the Goldstone Report in Israel and Beyond” in C. Meloni and G. Tognoni (eds), Is There A Court for Gaza?- A Test Bench for International Justice (Asser/Springer, The Hague, 2012), p. 105-120.

“National War Crimes Prosecution in Post-Conflict Era and Pluralism of Jurisdictions: the Experience of the Belgrade War Crimes Chamber” in A. Nollkaemper (ed.), Importing International Law in Post-Conflict States: The Role of Domestic Courts (Intersentia, Antwerp, 2012), pp. 241–68 (with Ivan Jovanovic).

“Reframing the Legality of the Israeli Military Courts –Military Occupation or Apartheid?” in A. Baker & A. Matar (eds), Threat - Palestinian Political Prisoners in Israel (Pluto Press, London, 2011), pp. 136-148.

  • Peer Reviewed Articles :

Transnational Jihadism and the Role of Criminal Judges: An Ethnography of French Courts”, Journal of Law and Society (2020) Vol 47, Issue S1, pp 30-53.

French foreign fighters: The engagement of administrative and criminal justice in France”, International Review of the Red Cross, Volume 100, Issue 907-909 (Cambridge University Press, 2019). (available also in French).

“Plongée au cœur des procès pénaux de Guantánamo”, Les Cahiers de la Justice, Vol 2, 2018, p. 299-314 (Paris, Dalloz, 2018) (avec M. Robinson).

“Special Issue: Law, Justice and the Security Gap”, Journal of Conflict and Security Law (Oxford University Press, 2016). Co-editor of this special issue dealing with human security (with M. Kaldor, C. Chinkin and I. Rangelov). 

Reducing the Security Gap through National Courts: Targeted Killings as a Case Study”, Journal of Conflict and Security Law, Volume 21, Issue 1, Spring 2016 (Oxford University Press).

"Building Respect for IHL through National Courts", International Review of the Red Cross, issue 895 (Cambridge University Press, 2015).

The Legitimating Role of the Israeli High Court of Justice: From Occupation to Segregation", Global Jurist, Vol 15 (1) (2015). “The Security Gap and the Role of National Courts” – Article presented in the workshop "Security in transition", London School of Economics, June 2013.

“To Be or Not to Be (and Independent) Judge”, SSRN Conference Paper No. 8/2013, The 5th European Society of International Law Research Forum – International Law As a Profession, May 2013.

“The Law in the Occupied Palestinian Territories: The Role of the Israeli High Court of Justice”, Droits Fondamentaux, Revue électronique internationale, Centre de recherche sur les droits de l'homme et le droit humanitaire, CRDH, Université Panthéon-Assas Paris II, n° 9, janvier 2011 - décembre 2012

“Israel’s Unwillingness? The Follow up Investigations to the UN Gaza Conflict Report and International Criminal Justice”, International Criminal Law Review, Vol. 12, no. 5, November 2012 (with V. Azarov).

“The Targeted Killing of Salah Shehadeh – From Gaza to Madrid”, International Journal of Criminal Justice, 2009 7(3), pp. 617-631.

“The Judicial Arm of the Occupation: The Israeli Military Courts in the Occupied Territories”, 89 International Review of the Red Cross, June 2007, pp. 395-420. 

  • Media

Interviewed for France Culture at the end of the trial of Charlie Hebdo, 16 dec 2020

Interviewed for French Daily La Croix at the beginning of the Charlie Hebdo trial, by Pierre Bienvault, 2 September 2020 :"Procès Charlie Hebdo - Hyper Cacher : « Ne pas faire peser sur les accusés le poids des attentes de la société"

Interviewed for French Daily Le Monde, Section ‘Ideas’, by Jean-Baptiste Jacquin, 10 March 2020

Interviewed for ‘Law and Justice’ Website (GIP - Ministry of Justice/ French National Center for Scientific research-CNRS), March 2020 

Interviewed for “How Do We Judge Islamist Terrorists”, article by Pierre Januel, Dalloz publication, 5 February 2020. 

Interviewed for the New York Times: “Paris Trial Shows Faltering Evolution of a Jihadist Cell”, by Adam Nossiter, 13 April 2018.

Ce que change l’adhésion de la Palestine à la Cour pénale internationale, Les incertitudes d'une justice inégalitaire, Magazine ORIENT XXI, Janvier 2015

Fausse impartialité de la Haute Cour de justice israélienne, La Légitimation du Mur, Magazine ORIENT XXI, Juillet 2014

Israël, le tribunal Russell contre l’impunité”, Le blog du Monde Diplomatique, January 2013 

La Cour pénale internationale en question”, Le blog du Monde Diplomatique, August 2011

“De Gaza à Madrid, l’assassinat ciblé de Salah Shehadeh”, Le Monde Diplomatique, September 2009

Borders, Documentary film, 52 minutes – Available at the médiathèque of the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Genève.  The film was aired several times on the French TV Channel Public Senat (La chaîne parlementaire) in August 2008. 

  • NGO

"Côte d’ivoire: De la crise post-électorale à la construction d’un État de droit : la nécessaire réforme de la justice militaire",  Report for the Fédération Internationale des Droits de L’Homme - FIDH, September 2015. 

Shielded From Accountability - Israel's Unwillingness to Investigate and Prosecute International Crimes”, Report for the Fédération Internationale des Droits de L’Homme - FIDH, September 2011

“The Investigation Mechanism of Torture Claims in Israel”, Adalah's Newsletter, Issue 105, June 2013

International law developments”, Adalah - The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, Electronic Journal, Volume 93, May 2012

Does International Law Shelter States from Accountability? The International Court of Justice decision in Germany v. Italy”, Adalah - The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, Electronic Journal, Volume 91, March 2012.

“A Survey on the Follow-up to the Goldstone Report”, Adalah - The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, Electronic Journal, Vol. 72, May- June 2010



Back to top