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Alexandra Kemmerer

Senior Research Fellow and Academic Coordinator

Alexandra Kemmerer is senior research fellow and academic coordinator at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, and head of the institute's Berlin Office. As academic coordinator of Recht im Kontext, she served as co-director of its transregional and interdisciplinary research program Rechtskulturen: Confrontations beyond Comparison at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin and Humboldt University Law School, where she also taught. At Humboldt, she established the collaborative research and blog project Verfassungsblog: Prospects of Scientific Communication in Legal Scholarship (with Christoph Möllers and Maximilian Steinbeis). Kemmerer studied law (and some philosophy and theology) at Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, University College Galway (Irish Centre for Human Rights Studies /NUI) and the German University for Administrative Sciences, Speyer. (First State Exam Würzburg, 2000; Second State Exam Munich, 2002). She has served as a researcher at the University of Würzburg, Faculty of Law (Jean Monnet Chair for European Law, Professor Dieter H. Scheuing), a law clerk with the European Commission’s Delegation to the United Nations, New York, a senior research fellow and head of the section ‘Law, Politics, Institutions’ at the Simon Dubnow Institute for Jewish History and Culture at the University of Leipzig, a research scholar at the EUI’s Department of Law, and a Grotius Research Scholar at the University of Michigan Law School. 2005-2006, she was a SIAS Fellow at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin and at Yale Law School. A member of the Frankfurt Bar, Kemmerer holds an LLM in European Law from the University of Würzburg, obtained with a thesis on the European Commission's contribution to the establishment of the International Criminal Court. As biographer of Eric Stein (1913-2011), Kemmerer is particularly interested in interrelations between biography, doctrine, and theory. She is a member of the editorial board of Zeitschrift für Ideengeschichte and of the advisory boards of the German Law Journal (where she served as a senior editor from 2004 - 2014) and Völkerrechtsblog. In her continuing parallel career as a writer and journalist, Kemmerer has published more than 600 essays, articles, interviews, reviews, profiles and shorter pieces in, inter alia, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Süddeutsche Zeitung, Merkur and Internationale Politik. Her research interests include international law, European public law, constitutional theory, comparative constitutional law, context(s) and histories of law, and the media theory and communicative praxis of law.




16 Sep 2017

‘International Law vs. Interplanetary Rocketry: The Ford Foundation’s International Legal Studies Program and the Sputnik Crisis’

Cold War International Law IV


29 Jun 2017

Universelle Viefalt: Das Völkerrecht zwischen universellem Anspruch und Differenz

Ringvorlesung "Völkerrechtskulturen"

Walther Schücking Institute for International Law at the University of Kiel

23 Jun 2017

General Comments

Treaties as travaux préparatoires: Conference on the 60th Anniversary of the Treaties of Rome

Max Planck Institute for European Legal History, Frankfurt

16 Jun 2017

Comment / Roundtable Discussion

The EU and Globalisation: Assets and Liabilities (Common Market Law Review Workshop 2017)

Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin

15 Jun 2017

Dignity, Democracy, Legitimacy: The European Citizen as Subject and Agent

Human Dignity and the Constitutional Crisis in Europe: Humanity, Democracy, Social Europe

European University Institute, Florence

06 May 2017

"An American Enterprise in the European Common Market: Eric Steins europäischer Sommer 1958"

Workshop "Clemens Heller, der intellektuelle Entrepreneur"

Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin

01 Dec 2016

Kommentar zur Key Note von Klaus Günther

Konferenz "Rechtliche Konstruktion von Verantwortung in Verbundszusammenhängen", European Law School (Promotionskolleg)

Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

16 Nov 2016

"The Learned Sceptic: Francis A. Mann and the Legal Integration of Europe. Elements of a Research Agenda"

F.A. Mann Workshop

Cambridge University, Faculty of Law / St. John's College

27 Jul 2016

Histories of International Law / Völkerrechtsgeschichten

Max Planck Summer Academy for Legal History

Max Planck Institute for European Legal History, Frankfurt / Main

30 May 2016

Recht und Erfahrung. Jüdische Juristen des 19. und 20. Jahrhunderts


Simon-Dubnow-Institut für Jüdische Geschichte und Kultur, Leipzig

18 Apr 2016

4. Merkur-Gespräch: Europas Flüchtlinge

Mit Christoph Möllers, Herfried Münkler, Christoph Schönberger

Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin

14 Mar 2016


How to Protect European Values – Assessing European Responses to Recent Reforms in Poland (Max Planck Forum)

Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaften

01 Mar 2016 - 01 Mär 2016

Transnationale Konstitutionalisierung als transatlantisches Projekt

DFG-Netzwerk: Die Verwaltungsrechtswissenschaft in der frühen Bundesrepublik (1949–1977)

Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen

09 Dec 2015 - 11 Dez 2015


Towards a New History of European Public Law: The battle over the constitutional practice, 1950-1993

Historical Archives of the European Union and European University Institute, Florence

05 Nov 2015 - 06 Nov 2015

US-American Legal Scholarship in the Context of Decolonization

The Battle for International Law in the Decolonization Era (Authors' Workshop)

Forum Transregionale Studien, Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin & Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

04 Sep 2015 - 05 Sep 2015


Oxford Handbook on the Sources of International Law - Second Book Workshop

Université de Fribourg

30 Jul 2015

History of International Law

Max Planck Summer Academy for Legal History

Max Planck Institute for European Legal History, Frankfurt am Main

07 Jul 2015

Scholarly Entrepreneurialism, Network Building, Movement Building (Panelist)

Transnational Law Summer Institute

King's College London

23 Jun 2015


Fourth Annual Junior Faculty Forum for International Law

European University Institute, Florence

05 Jun 2015

Balancing Religious Freedom with other Human Rights: The Promise and Perils of Transjudicialism. A Debate (Moderator)

Constitutionalism, Religious Freedom and Human Rights: Constitutionalism Migration and Transjudicialism beyond the North Atlantic

Schloss Herrenenhausn, Hannover

26 Apr 2015 - 27 Apr 2015

Rapporteur and Commentator

Crossing Boundaries: Personal Lives and Global Histories Workshop

Centre for Advanced Study of Behavioural Sciences at Stanford University, Palo Alto

17 Apr 2015

Histories of Human Rights and International Law

Histories of Human Rights Workshop

Lund University

30 Mar 2015

A plural déjà vu: Opinion 2/13 on EU accession to the ECHR

The Use of Foreign Law in Constitutional Adjudication: Global Influence, Judicial Diplomacy and Legal Dialogue in the Court of Justice of European Union

American University, Washington College of Law, Washington, DC

14 Jan 2015

Moderator: Educating Citizens - The Choice of Paternalism

Verfassungsblog-Konferenz "Choice Architecture in Democracies: Exploring the Legitimacy of Nudging"

Humboldt University, Berlin

27 Jun 2014

Code of Conduct? Materialities of Public Law

I-CON Society Inaugural Conference


30 Apr 2014


Kolloquium "Recht-Geschichte-Rechtsgeschichte"

Humboldt University, Berlin

Participation in Conferences at Home and Abroad

Editorial Board Meeting Zeitschrift für Ideengeschichte (Forschungsverbund Marbach-Weimar-Wolfenbüttel), Herzog-August-Bibliothek Wolfenbüttel, 17.02.2017 - 18.02.2017


Editorial Board Zeitschrift für Ideengeschichte

Advisory Board German Law Journal

Advisory Board Völkerrechtsblog

European Society of International Law

American Society of International Law

ESIL Interest Group History of International Law

Working Group "Transnationalisierung des Rechts"

DFG Scientific Network "Lawyers in International Politics" (German Research Foundation)


Selected short texts

Völkerrechtsgeschichten - Histories of International Law, EJIL:Talk!, 6 January 2015

Peer Review / Committees

Reviews of Manuscripts for European Journal of International Law, German Law Journal, Leiden Journal of International Law, Transnational Legal Theory, Zeitschrift für Ideengeschichte, Association for Jewish Studies Review, Cambridge University Press, Oxford University Press, Hart Publishing. 

Referee European Institutes for Advanced Study (EURIAS) Fellowship Programme (nominated by Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin / Institute for Advanced Study Berlin)

PhD Assessment Committee Rebekka Birkebo Byberg, University of Copenhagen