School of Law

Professor Surya P. Subedi, OBE, QC (Hon), DPhil (Oxon.), Barrister

Professor of International Law

Professor Surya P. Subedi, OBE, QC is among an exceptional group of experts whose high competence spans a number of areas of international law. He has covered the depth and breadth of international law in his teaching, research, and practice spanning some 30 years and has held high level national and international positions with responsibilities for policy formulation and advice. He has published eight books and more than 60 scholarly articles in all major areas of international law in leading international law journals. He is Professor of International Law at the University of Leeds, a visiting professor on the Masters programme on international human rights law at the University of Oxford, and a practising Barrister at Three Stone Chambers, Lincoln’s Inn, London.

He was elected by the UN Human Rights Council in 2009 to serve as the UN’s Special Rapporteur for human rights in Cambodia for six years and appointed by the British Government in 2010 as an advisor on human rights to the British Foreign Secretary for five years. His ground-breaking work on judicial and electoral reform in Cambodia was applauded by the international community including the US President Barack Obama.

Professor Subedi was elected to the Nobel Peace Prize winning Institut de Droit International in 2011. He also was invited to serve as an expert member of the Task Force on Investment Policy of the World Economic Forum (Davos) and the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development in Geneva. He was elected by the Asian Society of International Law in 2015 as Chairman of the Board of Editors of the Asian Journal of International Law (published by Cambridge University Press) as well as Chairman of the Research Committee of the Society.

These high achievements of Professor Subedi have been recognized in several significant ways. He was appointed by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II as Queen’s Counsel (Hon) in 2017 in recognition of his contribution to the development of international law and to the advancement of human rights and made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to international law in 2004. He is the first international law academic to be appointed a QC honoris causa.

Professor Subedi holds a doctoral degree in law from the University of Oxford, an LLM with Distinction from the University of Hull, and an MA and an LLB from Tribhuvan University. He was awarded the Dasturzada Pavry Memorial Prize for an outstanding DPhil thesis by the University of Oxford in 1993, the Josephine Onoh Memorial Prize for best LLM student by the University of Hull in 1988 and an SPTL Prize for Outstanding Legal Scholarship by Younger Scholars by the British Society of Legal Scholars in 1998.

Professor Subedi's full CV

Research Interests

I maintain an active research interest in all major areas of international law.


I currently teach Global Governance through Law, Public International Law, and International Investment Law.

PhD Supervision

I have supervised 24 PhD students to successful completion and would be willing to consider good research proposals from strong candidates for research in any area of international law.

Key Publications


  • Subedi, SP, The Effectiveness of the UN Human Rights System: Reform and the Judicialisation of Human Rights (Routledge, London/New York, 2017).
  • Subedi, SP, International Investment Law: Reconciling Policy and Principle, 3rd ed. (Oxford: Hart Publishing, 2016).

Journal articles

  • Teimouri, H and Subedi, SP, ‘Responsibility to Protect and the International Military Intervention in Libya in International Law: What Went Wrong and What Lessons Could be Learnt from It?' 23 (1) Journal of Conflict & Security Law (Oxford University Press, March 2018), pp.1-30.

  • Subedi, SP, ‘Life as a UN Special Rapporteur: The Role of UN Special Rapporteurs in Developing International Law, the Impact of Their Work, and Some Reflections of the UN Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Cambodia’, (20) Asian Yearbook of International Law (2018), pp.12-52.

  • Subedi, SP, ‘The Disputes in the South China Sea and the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea’, XIV (1) Soochow Law Journal (January 2017), pp.15-41.

  • Butler, N and Subedi, SP, ‘The Future of International Investment Regulation: Towards a World Investment Organisation?’ 64 (1) The Netherlands International Law Review (April 2017), pp.43-72.
  • Subedi, SP, ‘India’s New Bilateral Investment Promotion and Protection Treaty with Nepal: A New Trend in State Practice’, ICSID Review: Foreign Investment Law Journal, 28.2 (2013), 384-404 DOI: 10.1093/icsidreview/sit027
  • Subedi, SP, ‘Problems and prospects for the commission on the limits of the continental shelf in dealing with submissions by coastal states in relation to the Ocean Territory beyond 200 nautical miles’, International Journal of Marine and Coastal Law, 26.3 (2011), 413-431 DOI: 10.1163/157180811X567352
  • Subedi, SP, ‘The Notion of Free Trade and the First Ten Years of the World Trade Organization: How Level is the “Level Playing Field”?’ Vol. 53 (2) The Netherlands International Law Review (Autumn 2006), pp.273-296.
  • Subedi, SP, ‘The Challenge of Reconciling the Competing Principles within the Law of Foreign Investment with Special Reference to the Recent Trend in the Interpretation of the Term “Expropriation”, International Lawyer (A journal of the American Bar Association), Spring 2006, Vol. 40 (1), pp.121-141.
  • Subedi, SP, ‘The Road from Doha: The Issues for the Development Round of the WTO and the Future of International Trade’, 52 (2) International and Comparative Law Quarterly (April 2003), pp.425-446.


  • Subedi, SP, ‘An innovative solution to an ambitious project: Dispute resolution in the 1982 convention on the law of the sea’, in Shielding Humanity: Essays in International Law in Honour of Judge Abdul G. Koroma ([], 2015), 163-186 DOI: 10.1163/9789004293137_013
  • Subedi, SP, ‘International Law Response to Land Grabbing in Asia’, in Connie Carter and Andrew Harding (eds.), Land Grabs in Asia: What Role for the Law? (Routledge, Abingdon, 2015), pp.24-34.
  • Subedi, SP, ‘Human Rights Experts in the United Nations: A Review of the Role of the United Nations Special Procedures’, in Monika Ambrus et al (ed.), The Role of ‘Experts’ in International and European Decision-making Process (Cambridge University Press, 2014), pp.241-262.
  • Subedi, SP, ‘International Investment Law’, in International Law, ed. by Evans M, 4th ed. (Oxford University Press, 2014), 727-751.
  • Subedi, SP, ‘WTO Dispute Settlement Mechanism as a New Technique for Settling Disputes in International Law’, in International Law and Dispute Settlement: New Problems and Techniques, ed. by French D, Saul M and White N (Oxford, UK: Hart Publishing, 2010), 173-190.

Media Contact Areas

I am happy to speak to the press on any issues within international law.

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