Laurent Pech, Professor of European Law and Head of the Law & Politics Department at Middlesex University, has been named Jean Monnet Chair in EU Public Law by the European Commission in Brussels.
Along with the title of Jean Monnet Chair, Professor Pech has received a three-year grant of €50,000 to support a number of curriculum and research activities.
He becomes the first Middlesex University professor to receive the prestigious honour, which is named after one of the founders of the European Union and is funded by the EU's Lifelong Learning Programme.
The Jean Monnet Chair programme supports teaching positions in the field of EU studies worldwide and chairs are awarded following an international competitive process. Professor Pech was one of only five UK-based recipients awarded the distinction this year.
"It is a great honour to have been awarded a Jean Monnet Chair," commented Professor Pech.
"The grant associated with the award will enable the School of Law to organise a number of EU-related events on our campuses in London, Mauritius and Dubai during the next three years. We are also planning to introduce new, highly innovative modules such as an EU law clinic module, which would allow our students to learn about the EU by participating in public consultations on proposed EU legislation and other policy initiatives."
The School of Law is also planning to establish a Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence at Middlesex by harnessing relevant expertise within the University, including Dr Erica Howard, Dr Joe Corkin and Dr Irini Katsirea, who are already well-known experts in specific fields of EU law and who will be closely involved in the delivery of the School's three-year Jean Monnet work programme.
Professor Pech's current research focuses on the tools and mechanisms used by the EU to promote and safeguard its values within and beyond its borders. He is currently working on a policy paper focusing on the European Commission's new framework for addressing systemic threats to the rule of law in any of the EU's 28 Member States and his research was most recently cited in a House of Commons Library Research Paper on the EU as a democratic entity.