Professor William A. Schabas is professor of international law at Middlesex University in London. He is also professor of international human law and human rights at Leiden University, emeritus professor of human rights law at the National University of Ireland Galway and honorary chairman of the Irish Centre for Human Rights, and invited visiting scholar at the Paris School of International Affairs (Sciences Politiques). Prof. Schabas is a 'door tenant' at the chambers of 9 Bedford Row, in London.
Professor Schabas holds BA and MA degrees in history from the University of Toronto and LLB, LLM and LLD degrees from the University of Montreal, as well as honorary doctorates in law from several universities. He is the author of more than twenty books dealing in whole or in part with international human rights law, including: Introduction to the International Criminal Court (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2020, 6th ed.), Nowak’s Commentary on the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, 3rd. ed. (Kehl: Engel, 2019), The Trial of the Kaiser (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2018), The International Criminal Court: A Commentary on the Rome Statute (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016, 2nd ed.), The European Convention on Human Rights: A Commentary (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2015), The Universal Declaration of Human Rights: travaux préparatoires (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013); Unimaginable Atrocities, Justice, Politics and Rights at the War Crimes Tribunals (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2012), Genocide in International Law (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2nd ed., 2009) and The Abolition of the Death Penalty in International Law (Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2003, 3rd ed.). He has also published more than 400 articles in academic journals, principally in the field of international human rights law and international criminal law. His writings have been translated into Russian, German, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Japanese, Arabic, Persian, Turkish, Nepali and Albanian. He has lectured in more than fifty countries.
From 2002 to 2004 he served as one of three international members of the Sierra Leone Truth and Reconciliation Commission. In 2014 he was appointed chairman of the UN Commission of Inquiry into the Gaza war. Professor Schabas has worked as a consultant on capital punishment for the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime, and drafted the 2010, 2015 and 2020 reports of the Secretary-General on the status of the death penalty.
Professor Schabas was named an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2006. He was elected a member of the Royal Irish Academy in 2007. He has been awarded the Vespasian V. Pella Medal for International Criminal Justice of the Association internationale de droit pénal, and the Gold Medal in the Social Sciences of the Royal Irish Academy. He holds several honorary doctorates.
Supervision of doctoral students
Schabas, William A. (2021) The Customary International Law of Human Rights. Oxford University Press, Oxford, UK. ISBN 9780192845696
Schabas, William A. (2021) Richard Holbrooke: The not so quiet American [Book Review]. Diplomatic History , 45 (1). pp. 213-215. ISSN 0145-2096
Schabas, William A. (2021) Of amnesty, pendulums, and peremptory norms. FIU Law Review , 15 (1). pp. 83-85. ISSN 2643-7767
Schabas, William A. , ed. (2020) The International Court of Justice. Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, UK. ISBN 9781789900170
Schabas, William A. (2020) International Law and the abolition of the death penalty. In: Comparative capital punishment. Steiker, Carol S. and Steiker, Jordan , eds. Research Handbooks in Comparative Law series . Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, UK, pp. 217-231. ISBN 9781786433244