ELFA: Dedicated to legal education

The European Law Faculties Association (ELFA) was founded in 1995 in Leuven by more than 80 Faculties of Law located in different universities across Europe. The organisation today has more than 150 members from countries within Europe and beyond.

ELFA acts as an international forum for the discussion of legal topics related to legal education, and negotiates and signs cooperation agreements with governmental agencies and educational entities in Europe and internationally.

Every year ELFA organises its annual conference at which members are encouraged to participate in its plenary, workshops and round tables. To support researchers it organises its ELFA Award for the best Doctoral Thesis on European Law.

If we desire respect for the law, we must first make the law respectable.

Louis D. Brandeis


ELFA represents and promotes the interests of its members in the field of legal education and research vis-à-vis EU institutions, international organisations as well as associations of legal professionals.


2018     ELFA promotes the 1st International meeting of Law Faculty Associations

2017     ELFA calls to ensure that access to justice remain affordable and open to all

2017     ELFA calls to ensure EU funding to complement action by Member States

2015     The Chinese Association of Law Faculties indicates its interest in joining ELFA

2014     ELFA calls to ensure that Public sector law faculties are sufficiently funded

2013    ELFA considers teaching and research as their core tasks

2012    Cooperation agreements with the Association of American Law Schools and the Southeastern Association of Law Schools

2012     Launching of first ELFA Award for the best European Doctoral Thesis on European Law

2011     ELFA asks EU institutions and governments to discontinue budgetary reductions

2009   ELFA creates a list of experts dealing with the ECTS system

1995    Foundation of ELFA in Leuven by more than 80 faculties of Law across Europe


The ELFA Board members and the current President

Veronica Ruiz Abou-Nigm
Veronica Ruiz Abou-Nigm University of Edinburgh

Verónica Ruiz Abou-Nigm is Chair in Private International Law at Edinburgh Law School.

She is widely published in private international law and has taught and researched in Europe and Latin America. Her work is published in English, Spanish and Portuguese. Her research focuses on the intersections between private international law and other disciplines, including international commercial arbitration, shipping law, migration, sustainable development and legal education.

Professor Ruiz Abou-Nigm is Vice-President of the American Association of Private International Law (ASADIP), and Member of the Scientific Council of the European Association of Private International Law (EAPIL).

Her latest books include The Private Side of Transforming our World – UN Sustainable Development Goals 2030 and the Role of Private International Law (Intersentia, 2021) (with Ralf Michaels and Hans van Loon); Morris on The Conflict of Laws (10th edn, Sweet & Maxwell, 2021) (with David McClean); Diversity and Integration in Private International Law (Edinburgh University Press, 2019) (with Maria Blanca Noodt Taquela) and Linkages and Boundaries in Private and Public International Law (Hart Publishing, 2018) (with Duncan French and Kasey McCall Smith).


Jivko Draganov
Jivko DraganovUniversity of National and World Economy Sofia
First Vice-President

Jivko Draganov is Professor at the University of National and World Economy Sofia (UNWE).

He is Head of the Department of International and European Union Law at UNWE, university of which he was Dean of the Law Faculty (2015 – 2019). Since 2012 he serves as Director of the Regional Centre for Distance Learning at UNWE in Haskovo. He is a member of the Academic committee at the President of the Bulgarian Patent Office.  He was a member of the Standing Committee on Post-Accreditation Monitoring and Control of the National Evaluation and Accreditation Agency in Bulgaria (2014-2015).

Jivko Draganov has more than 50 publications in Bulgarian and English, among which four books. His research interests focus on Intellectual Property Law and European Union law. He is an Adjunct Professor at the Varna Free University, Bulgaria. He has been visiting professor and guest lecturer at the American University in Bulgaria, North-West Institute of Management, St. Petersburg, Russia, University of Reggio Calabria, Italy and other universities in Bulgaria and abroad.

Gema Tomás
Gema TomásUniversity of Deusto
Vice-President and Treasurer

Gema Tomás is Full Professor of Civil Law at the University of Deusto.

Gema Tomás holds a Law degree and a PhD in Civil law from the University of Deusto. She is currently Dean of the Deusto Law School. She was Substitute Judge (Magistrada) at the Provincial Court (1999-2002) and has collaborated with the Basque Government in the drafting of regulatory projects.

In the academic field she combines research and teaching at Deusto Law School in the areas of European Contract law, Roman law, Spanish Law of Obligations and Gender studies. She has been visiting professor at Antofagasta University in Chile and Bayreuth University in Germany, and has conducted international research at Boston College, the University of Amsterdam and the University of London, among others. She is a national reporter for Spain in the international network Common Core of European Private Law.

Dr Tomás is a Member of the Societé Internationale de Histoire et Droit de la Antiquité, the Academia Vasca del Derecho and the European Law Institute (ELI).

Barbara Pozzo
Barbara PozzoUniversità degli Studi dell’Insubria – Como

Barbara Pozzo is Full Professor of Private Comparative Law at the
Università degli Studi dell’Insubria – Como.

Prof. Barbara Pozzo is professor of Private Comparative Law at the University of Insubria – Como, where she is
also Chairholder of an UNESCO Chair on Gender Equality and Womens Rights in the Multicultural Society.

She holds a JD from the University of Milan and a PhD in comparative Law from the University of Florence. She has studied in Germany (Max-Planck-Institute of Comparative Law and Private International Law – Hamburg) and France (Faculté Internationale de Droit Comparé – Strasbourg) and has been visiting professor at various foreign universities (Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina – Florianopolis; Hitotsubashi University – Tokyo; UC Davis School of Law; Pacific University, Mc George School of Law; Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge).

Prof. Pozzo has been from 2015 to 2021 Dean of the Law School at the University of Insubria – Como and since 2013 she is the Director of its Post- graduate program on Fashion Law, organised in co-operation with the University of Milan. She is member of the Council of the European Law Institute (ELI) and of the Board of the European Law Faculties Association (ELFA). In 2022 she has been elected President of SIRD, the Italian Society for Comparative Law Research. She is member of the Editorial board of the European Review of Private Law.

Izabela Kraśnicka
Izabela KraśnickaUniversity of Bialystok

Izabela Kraśnicka is an Associate Professor of Public International Law at the Faculty of Law of the University of Bialystok.

Dr hab. Izabela Kraśnicka is Vice-Dean for International Cooperation and Development at the Faculty of Law, University of Bialystok, in Poland.

Izabela Kraśnicka holds a doctoral and post-doctoral Degree in Law. She specializes and publishes her works in Public International Law (with special emphasis on International Aviation Law), US Legal System and Legal Education.

Dr Kraśnicka runs international relations of her law school as a Vice-Dean for International Cooperation and Development. She is also directing the Legal Center of Research on Education and supervising the Summer Law Program with Michigan State University College of Law. She is a board member of the Polish Legal Clinics Foundation and member of the Steering Committee of the Global Alliance for Justice Education.

She has been attending ELFA annual meetings since 2005 and currently serves as a Deputy-Editor of the European Journal of Legal Education published by ELFA.

Lukas Rass-Masson
Lukas Rass-MassonUniversity Toulouse 1 Capitole
Lukas Rass-Masson is Professor of Law at University Toulouse 1 Capitole

Lukas Rass-Masson is Professor of Law specialised in Private International Law, International Commercial and Business Law, Family Law and European Law. After previous positions at University Paris II, Panthéon-Assas and University Paris 1, Panthéon-Sorbonne, he was appointed Professor (Professeur des Universités) at University Toulouse 1 Capitole in 2017. In June 2018, he became Director of the European School of Law Toulouse (ESLToulouse) and in December 2020 was appointed Vice-President of the University in charge of governance.

Previous responsibilities include a position as legal officer at the Permanent Bureau of the Hague Conference and as independent expert for the European Union (Commission and Parliament).

After an award-winning doctoral dissertation on “the Foundations of European Private International Family Law”, his current research focuses on the methodology of European Private Law and global Private International Law, especially in an Asian-European perspective.

His publications, in English, French and German, include books, articles in well renowned law reviews and book chapters.

Andreas R. Ziegler
Andreas R. Ziegler University of Lausanne
Ex-president, advisor to the Board

Andreas R. Ziegler is Professor of International Law at the Law School of the University of Lausanne.

He is also the Director of the LL.M. Program in International and European Economic and Commercial Law at the same university.

Currently he is a member of numerous professional organisations and acts as the President of the Swiss Chapter of the International Law Association (ILA). He holds a conjoint professorship at the Law School of the University of New South Wales as well as visiting appointments at the University of St. Gallen, the University of Technology (Sydney, Australia), the Federal Institute of Technology (Zurich), the World Trade Institute of the University of Berne and the Europe Institute in Saarbrücken (Germany). He has previously held visiting appointments at Bocconi University in Milan, the University of Lund, Yeditepe University in Istanbul, the Diplomatic Academy of Jordan, the Chicago-Kent College of Law as well as the University of Pittsburgh.

He was a civil servant working for several Swiss Ministries as well as the EFTA Secretariat in Geneva and the European Commission before being appointed full professor of law at the University of Lausanne in 2003. He has also worked for a major law firm and is currently of counsel with Froriep Rengli (Zürich, Switzerland). He is on the rosters of panelists of the WTO and of conciliators of ICSID and has taken part in proceedings before the Swiss Supreme Court, the European Court of Human Rights and the Permanent Court of Arbitration.

Andres R. Ziegler studied economics, international relations and law at the universities of St. Gallen, Paris (SciencesPo), Florence (LLM, European University Institute) and London. After obtaining his doctorate in St. Gallen in 1995, and the diplomas of the Academy of International Law (The Hague) and European Law (Florence) he undertook post-doctoral research at Georgetown University Law Center (Washington DC, USA) and the Max-Planck-Institute in Heidelberg (Germany).


2019-2022  Marek Grzybowski (University of Warsaw)

2018-2019  Michele Graziadei (University of Torino)

2017-2018  Josep Maria de Dios (Autonomous University of Barcelona)

2016-2017  Vera Kalvodová (Masaryk University)

2015-2016  Laurence Gormley (University of Groningen)

2014-2015  Haluk Kabaalioglu (Yeditepe University)

2013-2014  Anne Klebes-Pélissier (University of Strasbourg)

2012-2013  Reiner Schulze (University of Münster)

2011-2012  Manuel Bermejo Castrillo (University Carlos III of Madrid)

2010-2011  Jacek Petzel (University of Warsaw)

2009-2010  Janez Kranjc (University of Ljubljana)

2008-2009 Pascal Pichonnaz (University of Fribourg)

2007-2008 Heribert Hirte (University of Hamburg)

2006-2007 Blanca Vilà Costa (Autonomous University of Barcelona)

2005-2006 Fiona Cownie (University of Hull)

2004-2005 Willibald Posch (Karl-Franzens University Graz)

2003-2004 Norbert Olszak (University of Strasbourg)

2002-2003 Julian Lonbay (University of Birmingham)

2001-2002 Norbert Reich (Riga Graduate School of Law)

2000-2001 Stefania Bariatti (University of Milano)

1999-2000 Jaap Doek (Free University Amsterdam)

1998-1999 Dominique Breillat (University of Poitiers)

1997-1998 Hilmar Fenge (University of Hannover)

1995-1997 Frans Vanistendael (Catholic University Leuven)


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