Alexander von Humboldt Professorship 2018

Anne van Aaken

Anne van Aaken is invited to the University of Hamburg to drive the economic analysis of law as well as the Law Faculty’s theoretical orientation and empirical research.

  • Nominating University: University of Hamburg

Law / Economics

What happens when parliamentarians are under obligation to respect transparency and publish their outside earnings? And what is the legal status of what is known as “nudging”? With this relatively recent method of regulation the state refrains from imposing prohibitions and obligations to make people behave in a certain way. Instead, politicians rely on nudging, pushing people in a specific direction, but leaving the decision up to them. Examples include people actively deciding against organ donation and having to file an objection to it or telling consumers in their energy bills that they are using more power than their neighbours.
Anne van Aaken is one of the world’s leading experts on fundamental legal issues of this kind. She works in diverse legal fields ranging from public international law through international economic law to areas like corruption, and financial market supervision and regulation. She tackles these topics from the perspective of both law and behavioural economics – a bridging method that promises to generate new approaches to issues such as the change brought about by globalisation processes in legal systems or the development of (international) law.

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Anne van Aaken at the University of Hamburg

Brief bio

Born in Germany in 1969, Anne van Aaken is professor of Law and Economics, Legal Theory, Public International Law and European Law at the University of St Gallen, Switzerland. After university and completing her doctorate she conducted research in Germany, amongst others at the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods in Bonn and the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law in Heidelberg. She has also worked in Israel, Ethiopia, Chile and the United States where she was a visiting researcher at institutions such as Berkeley Law School and Yale Law School. She is a member of associations like the International Law Association and Vice President of the European Society of International Law. Anne van Aaken sits on the editorial boards of many journals, including the European Journal of International Law. In August 2018 she took up her position as a Humboldt Professor at the University of Hamburg.

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