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Valentina Volpe

Dr. iur., Senior Research Fellow

volpe@mpil.de

Main Fields of Research:

Global and international public law, comparative constitutional law, democracy promotion, human rights, international organizations (with a particular focus on CoE and EU), European human rights law.

Academic Career:

Since 2014: Senior Research Fellow, Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law (MPIL), Heidelberg, Germany (Prof. Anne Peters’ team).

Since 2016: Associate Lecturer, United Nations-mandated University for Peace (UPEACE), San José, Costa Rica.

Since 2016: Associate Lecturer, Master in Management e Politiche delle Pubbliche Amministrazioni (M.A.M.A.), LUISS Guido Carli University, Rome, Italy.

Since 2015: Associate Lecturer, Faculté de Droit, Université Catholique de Lille, campus of Paris, France.

2014 - 2016: Associate Lecturer, Master of Comparative Business Law (M.C.B.L.), University of Mannheim, Germany.

2013 - 2014: Project Manager, human rights area, @uxilia NGO, Udine, Italy.

2008 - 2012: Ph.D. Candidate in Law and Legal Theory, Italian Institute of Human Sciences (SUM) Naples, today Scuola Normale Superiore of Pisa, Italy.

2008 - 2010: Assistant Lecturer of Comparative Constitutional Law, Department of Political Science, University of Trieste, Italy.

2007: Project Officer, intern, Italian Embassy of Beijing, China (September – December).

2006: Parliamentary Assistant, intern, European Parliament, Brussels, Belgium (January – June).

Education:

2008 - 2012:  Ph.D. summa cum laude in Law and Legal Theory at the Italian Institute of Human Sciences (SUM), today Scuola Normale Superiore of Pisa, with a doctoral dissertation on Global Administrative Law and International Law: Global Dimensions of Democracy (supervisor Prof. Sabino Cassese).
Defense: 14th February 2013.

2005 - 2007:  LL.M. (Laurea Specialistica) 110/110 summa cum laude in European, International and Comparative Legal Studies at the University of Trieste with a dissertation on Comparative Constitutional Law: The Role of the Venice Commission in the Eastern Europe’s Constitutional Transition (supervisor Prof. Sergio Bartole).

2002 - 2005:  J.D. (Laurea di Primo Livello) 110/110 summa cum laude in Legal Science at the University of Trieste, with a dissertation on Comparative Private Law: The European Models of Civil Unions (supervisor Prof. Mauro Bussani).

2005: Erasmus exchange student, Faculté de Droit, de Sciences Politiques et de Gestion, Robert Schuman, University of Strasbourg, France (Spring term).

 

Visiting positions and research stays:

2010 - 2011: Visiting researcher at the Yale Law School, New Haven, CT, USA.
Courses: Constitution. Philosophy, History, Law (Prof. Bruce Ackerman); Human Rights & Difference (Prof. Ratna Kapur); Law and Globalization (Profs. Seyla Benhabib & Alec Stone Sweet); International Dimensions of Democratization (Prof. Nikolay Marinov).

2010: Study Visitor at the European University Institute (EUI) Library, San Domenico di Fiesole, Florence, Italy (February – July).

2009: Study Visitor at the Italian Constitutional Court Library, Rome, Italy (July).

2007: Visiting researcher at the European Commission for Democracy through Law - Venice Commission (supervisor Ms. Simona Granata–Menghini), Council of Europe, Strasbourg, France (August-September).
 

University courses:

Global Law and Human Rights, United Nations-mandated University for Peace (UPEACE), San Jose’, Costa Rica, 2017/2018 and 2016/2017 (Fall term), 15h.

European Comparative Law, Faculté de Droit, Université Catholique de Lille, campus of Paris, France, 2016/2017, 2015/2016 and 2014/2015 (Spring term), 24h.

Law and Global Governance, Master in Management e Politiche delle Pubbliche Amministrazioni (M.A.M.A.), LUISS Guido Carli University, Rome, Italy, 2016/2017 and 2015/2016 (Spring term), 10h.

EU Fundamental Rights, Master of Comparative Business Law (M.C.B.L.), University of Mannheim, Germany, 2015/2016 and 2014/2015 (Fall term), 28h.

Comparative Law in Global Perspective, International Law Summer School, China University of Political Science and Law (CUPL), Beijing, China (July - August 2015), 36h.

Publications

Recent

  • Realizing European Identity. The Role of the Enlargment Process. In: "Why Europe? German-Italian Reflections on a Common Topic". Franz Steiner Verlag, Stuttgart 2017, 73-81.
  • Drafting Counter-majoritarian Democracy: The Venice Commission’s Constitutional Assistance. In: Heidelberg Journal of International Law 4, 811-843 (2016).
  • An Emerging Right to a “Gay” Family Life? The Case Oliari v. Italy in a Comparative Perspective. In: German Law Journal 3, 451-486 (2016) (with Sabrina Ragone).
  • La Corte oltre lo Specchio: un Dialogo tra Giudici Costituzionali, con Sabino Cassese e Daria de Pretis. In: Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law & International Law (MPIL) Research Paper 6 (2016) (with Giacomo Rugge).
  • La Corte Europea dei Diritti dell'Uomo e l'Indipendenza del Potere Giudiziario. In: Giornale di Diritto Amministrativo 1, 43-51 (2015).
  • Italia. In: Oltre lo Ius Soli, la Cittadinanza Italiana in Prospettiva Comparata, M. Savino (ed.). IRPA. Editoriale Scientifica, Naples 2014, 35-65.
  • The EU’s Enlargement Policy and the Promotion of Democracy. The Case of Turkey. In: Global Administrative Law: The Casebook, S. Cassese - B. Carotti - L. Casini - E. Cavalieri - E. MacDonald , with the collaboration of M. Macchia - M. Savino (eds.). Institute for Research on Public Administration (IRPA) - Institute for International Law and Justice (IILJ), Rome, New York 2012, 22-32.
  • Guaranteeing Electoral Democratic Standards. The Venice Commission and "The Code of Good Practice in Electoral Matters". In: Global Administrative Law: The Casebook, S. Cassese - B. Carotti - L. Casini - E. Cavalieri - E. MacDonald. Institute for Research on Public Administration (IRPA) - Institute for International Law and Justice (IILJ), Rom, New York 2012, 57-67 (with Marco Macchia, Mario Savino).
  • Does civil society promote democracy? The Arab Spring and the EU’s “New Response to a changing Neighborhood”. In: Global Administrative Law: The Casebook, S. Cassese - B. Carotti - L. Casini - E. Cavalieri - E. MacDonald. Institute for Research on Public Administration (IRPA) - Institute for International Law and Justice (IILJ), Rom, New York 2012, 149-157 (with Marco Macchia, Mario Savino).

Further

  • Stanchi di essere vento: la Comunità Sinta a Trieste (Tired of being the wind. The Sinti community in Trieste). In: Trieste multiculturale. Comunità e linguaggi di integrazione. Il Mulino, Bologna 2011, 109-124.

Presentations

11 May 2017 - 13 Mai 2017

Co-organiser with Anne Peters (MPIL) and Stefano Battini (IRPA): Remedies against Immunity? Reconciling international and domestic law after the Italian Constitutional Court’s Sentenza 238/2014

Villa Vigoni, Lake Como

03 Feb 2017

European Illiberal Democracies? Facing Political Risk within the EU

Law School, Lille Catholic University, Paris

27 Oct 2016

From Ends to Means. How to Protect the Rule of Law in the European Union

Global Legal Network (GLN) Annual Meeting Impacts of Legal Risks on Effectiveness of EU Law

Tallinn, Estonia

05 Sep 2016

Referentenbesprechung: From Human Rights to the Rule of Law: The ECtHR Grand Chamber Judgment Baka v. Hungary

Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg

12 Jul 2016

International Actors in Constitution Building Processes: The Venice Commission in Africa

Summer course on Constitution Building in Africa

Central European University, Budapest

11 Jul 2016

Referentenbesprechung: A Second Silent Brexit? Britain, Strasbourg, and Human Rights

Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg

02 Jun 2016 - 05 Jun 2016

The Right to a “Gay” Family Life: The Role of Supranational and Constitutional Courts in Endorsing Social Change in Europe

(with Sabrina Ragone), Law and Society Association (LSA) Annual Conference

New Orleans, U.S

02 May 2016

Yes, we can! The Role of Global Actors in Human Rights Promotion

Law School, LUISS Guido Carli University, Rome

18 Apr 2016

Referentenbesprechung: Legal (Trans)gender Recognition. The Italian Constitutional Court Facing Transsexual Rights: A Comment to Sentenza 221/2015

Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg

23 Mar 2016

Non-State Actors and Democracy Promotion

Faculté de Droit, Université Catholique de Lille, Paris

28 Jan 2016 - 29 Jan 2016

Democracy and Human Rights: A European Identity?

Workshop, From Ideas on Europe to the European Citizen: Why Europe?

Villa Vigoni, Lake Como

12 Nov 2015

Chair and Interviewer (with Giacomo Rugge) of the Italian Justices Prof. Sabino Cassese and Prof. Daria de Pretis in "La Corte oltre lo Specchio": un Dialogo tra Giudici Costituzionali.

Dialoghi Italiani

Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg

27 Oct 2015 - 25 Nov 2015

Global Dimensions of Democracy. Global Actors Raising Domestic Legal Standards

poster presentation, project selected for the MPIL Academic Advisory Board (Fachbeirat) and Board of Trustees (Kuratorium) presentations

Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg

02 Nov 2015

Referentenbesprechung: If Mayors Ruled the World. An Alternative Path for Global Governance

book presentation [Benjamin R. Barber, If Mayors Ruled the World: Dysfunctional Nations, Rising Cities, Yale University Press, New Haven, 2013]

Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg

16 Sep 2015

‘The Hard Impact of Soft Law’. How International Organizations May Promote Democracy and Human Rights Globally

University for Peace (UPEACE), San Jose’, Costa Rica

16 Sep 2015

The European Union’s Political Conditionality in the EU Enlargement Process as an Instrument of Democracy and Human Rights Promotion

Diplomado Internacional Derechos Humanos, El nuevo Derecho Público del Siglo XXI y la protección multinivel de los derechos humanos

University for Peace, Heidelberg University, and Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Colegio de Abogados, San Jose’, Costa Rica

07 Sep 2015

Referentenbesprechung (with Sabrina Ragone): The European Court of Human Rights and Same-Sex Unions. Supporting the “European Consensus” or the right to a “Gay” Family Life? A Comment on the Case Oliari and Others v. Italy

(with S. Ragone)

Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg

23 Jul 2015

The Venice Commission Constitutional Assistance: Strengths and Limits of an Instrument for Democracy through Law

Workshop Parliaments, constitutional transitions and the Venice Commission, Summer School - Jean Monnet Module on 'Parliamentary Democracy in Europe', Parliaments of Europe: foreign policy and democracy promotion, School of Government LUISS Guido Carli (14 July 2015 - 24 July 2015)

Rome

02 Jul 2015

Rewarding, Drafting and Funding Democracy: The Role of International Organizations in Raising National Democratic and Human Rights Standards

International Society of Public Law (ICON.S) Annual Conference, New York University School of Law (1 July 2015 - 3 July 2015)

New York, USA

16 May 2015

Invited commentator, Panel Comparative survey of constitutional reform in the Arab region since 2011: Lessons Learned. The Arab Spring and the Eastern European Democratic Transitions

4th Annual Conference on Comparative Arab Constitutional Law

16 – 17 May, Cairo, Egypt

05 May 2015

Chair and Discussant, 4th Max Planck Masterclass in International Law with Emmanuelle Tourme-Jouannet on "Apprendre a’ repenser le droit international"

Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg

10 Mar 2015

Drafting Democracy: il Ruolo della Commissione di Venezia nella Promozione della Democrazia attraverso il Diritto

LUISS Guido Carli, Law School, Rome

09 Mar 2015

Costruire la Democrazia: la Commissione di Venezia e il Mondo Nuovo del Diritto

Università di Salerno, Law School, Fisciano, Italy

02 Feb 2015

Referentenbesprechung: The European Court of Human Rights and the Independence of the Judiciary: Ensuring Individual Rights or a Systemic Rule of Law? A Comment on the Case Baka v. Hungary

Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law Heidelberg

23 May 2014

Chair and co - organiser with Mauro Bussani of the conference: Europe 2014 - 1914. The Legacy of the Great Empires

with Lucio Caracciolo

Trieste

03 Dec 2014

No taxation without representation? La disciplina italiana in tema di acquisto della cittadinanza e i suoi paradossi

Dialoghi Italiani, Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg

21 Nov 2014

Unveiling the Truth: the ECHR judgment S.A.S. v. France

seminar “ECHR case SAS v France on banning of burkas and niqab”, Centro de Estudios Políticos and Constitucionales, Madrid

25 Oct 2014

Guido Calabresi: A Dialogue between the Man and the Law

IRPA - Italian Institute for Public Administration, Annual Conference 24-25 October 2014, Sutri, Rome

21 Jul 2014

Referentenbesprechung: Is Islam an ECtHR (and European) Taboo? The Case of S.A.S. v. France

Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law

Heidelberg

04 Feb 2014

"Half He Pulled and Half She Sank": the Transformative Power of International Organizations in Raising National Democratic Standards

Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg

13 Mar 2013

Chair and co - organizer with Mauro Bussani of the conference: Lawyers, Professors and Judges: the US experience

with Guido Calabresi, Sterling Professor Emeritus of Law - Yale Law School

Trieste, Italy

12 Mar 2012

Organiser of the conference: Antonio Cassese, the Dream of Human Rights

Conference in the memory of Antonio Cassese. With Sabino Cassese, Paola Gaeta and Mauro Bussani

Trieste, Italy

24 May 2010

La Promozione della Democrazia e il Nuovo Ordine Globale

Doctoral School in Comparative Public Law and EU Law of the University of Udine, University of Trieste

27 Apr 2010

Exporting Democracy: How the Global Legal Order Promotes Democracy

IRPA - Istituto di Ricerche sulla Pubblica Amministrazione, Rome

Teaching

December 2016

Becoming or Remaining Italians? The Paradoxes of the Italian Citizenship

Lecture, Comparative Constitutional Law, (Dr. Antonio Merlino), Law School, Paris Lodron University of Salzburg, Austria

December 2016

Human Rights and the External Dimension of the EU

EU Fundamental Rights, (Dr. Davide Paris), Master of Comparative Business Law (M.C.B.L.), University of Mannheim, Germany

November 2016

European Illiberal Democracies? How to Face Rule of Law and Human Rights Backlashes in the EU

European Economic Law, (Dr. Emmanuel Gardounis), Science Po, Paris, France

September 2015

Global Dimensions of Democracy

International and European Human Rights Law (Prof. Iris Canor), Summer course, School of Law, College of Management (Israel), Heidelberg

January 2015

Democracy as a Universal Value? The evolutionary meaning of democracy within the UN framework, Colloquium.

Current Developments in International Law, University of Heidelberg, Faculty of Law - MPIL

April 2013

Socialist Legal Systems and the Problem of Democratic Transition

Comparative Legal Traditions (Prof. Mauro Bussani), Law School, University of Trieste

October 2011

Raising Standards of Freedom of Expression: the Role of the Council of Europe

Freedom of New Ideas (FONI), European Public Law Organization (EPLO), Moldova State University, Chisinau, Republic of Moldova

Participation in Conferences at Home and Abroad

Antonio Cassese Initiative summer school "Post-Conflict Justice and State Building", Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights, Schweiz, 01.07.2013 - 07.07.2013

Seminar "In the Name of the People or in the Name of the Constitution" held by Prof. Sabino Cassese, IRPA - Istituto di Ricerche sulla Pubblica Amministrazione, Rom, Italien, 01.03.2010 - 31.05.2010

Training course "Women, Politics, and Institutions". Ministry of Equal Opportunity, Superior School of Public Administration, University of Trieste, Italy, 01.09.2005 - 09.12.2005

Honours

2016: Friz Thyssen Foundation Grant, Promotion of science and research events, State, Economy and Society, for the conference Remedies against Immunity? Reconciling International and domestic law after the Italian Constitutional Court's Sentenza 238/2014, (co-organized with Anne Peters and Stefano Battini) at Villa Vigoni, Lake Como, May 2017 (Grant 25.000 euro).

2008 - 2011: Doctoral fellowship grant, Italian Institute of Human Sciences (SUM), Naples.

Since 2008: Cultore della Materia (honorary title) in Italian and Comparative Constitutional Law, Political Science Department, University of Trieste.

2005: Erasmus exchange grant, Faculté de Droit, de Sciences Politiques et de Gestion, Robert Schuman, University of Strasbourg, France (Spring term).

Memberships

Member of the International Society of Public Law (ICON-S) (since 2015).
 

Member of the Academic Advisory Board of the Review Heidelberg Journal of International Law/Zeitschrift für ausländisches öffentliches Recht und Völkerrecht (ZaöRV), MPIL, (since 2015).

Member of the IRPA - Istituto di Ricerche sulla Pubblica Amministrazione (since 2014).

Member of the Global Legal Network (since 2015).

Member of the executive team of the Antonio Cassese Intiative for Justice, Peace and Humanity – Geneva Academy of International and Humanitarian Law and Human Rights, Geneva, Switzerland (since 2013).

Member of the Local editorial board of the Review Diritto Pubblico Comparato ed Europeo - DPCE - office of Trieste, Association of Comparative and European Public Law (since 2009).

Miscellaneous

Research interests

Since my doctoral studies, supervised by Professor Sabino Cassese, I focused on the role and potential of international organizations in raising domestic democratic and human rights standards. 

My research interests lie at the intersection of the contemporary political and legal fields of study, having the concept of “democracy through law” in the post-1989 world at their core.

I am interested in the new global dimensions of law and overall in their human implications, trying to remember that “hominum causa omne jus constitutum est”.

Other professional activities

2015 - present: Promoter and coordinator of the MPIL Internship Programme, Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg.

2014 - present: Participant in the mentoring program for women’s scholars, Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg.

2008 - 2010: Participation in the two-year research project The “difficult” communities: multiculturalism and immigration in the territory of Trieste. Criticalities and legal models circulation in the Euro-regional area, director Prof. Roberto Scarciglia, Political Science Department, University of Trieste.

Dialoghi Italiani

2014 - to date: Initiator (with Giacomo Rugge) and co-organizer (with Sabrina Ragone) of the MPIL monthly discussion forum Dialoghi Italiani, about Italian legal and political world (in Italian). Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg.

International cooperation and voluntary work experiences

2013 Sri Lanka – Project officer - Project for the rehabilitation of former children soldiers and war widows of the Tamil minority, @uxilia NGO (March)

2008 - 2010 Italy – Educational support for children of the Roma and Sinti communities living in the “camps”, Trieste

2004 India – Community building and preschool education in rural area, Kerala (September-October)

Language proficiency

Italian (mother tongue), English (fluent), French (fluent), Spanish (working knowledge), German (fair)