Universiteit Leiden

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Institute of Anglo-American Law

The Institute of Anglo-American Law was established by Professor Basil Markesinis, and opened by His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales in 1988.

The opening by H.R.H. the Prince of Wales

The presence of Prince Charles underlined not only the successful and highly valued past, but also the promising future of Anglo-American relations in the field of law. It is these relations which were and still are at the heart of the Institute’s efforts.

On 22 October 1999 a plaque was unveiled by the Rt. Hon. the Lord Irvine of Lairg, Lord High Chancellor of Great Britain to mark the Institute's successful promotion of close Anglo-Dutch legal relations since it was officially opened by H.R.H. the Prince of Wales on 27 October 1988.

About us

The board of the Institute of Anglo-American Law consists of the following members:

The objects of the foundation
- to promote the knowledge of Anglo-American law;
- to conduct and promote scientific research in the area of Anglo-American law;
- to take care of contacts between Anglo-American and Dutch lawyers and law students;
- and furthermore, everything that is directly or indirectly related to these matters or that may be conducive to them, all in the broadest sense.

The foundation tries to achieve its objects inter alia by:
- gathering and studying professional literature and documentation;
- establishing and maintaining contacts with persons and bodies that are important for the achievement of the said objects of the foundation;
- organising courses, symposiums, seminars and conferences;
- carrying out projects on the subject of Anglo-American law, both nationally and internationally.

The foundation does not aim to make a profit


The Institute is responsible for one or more chairs of Anglo-American Law.

Anglo-American Private Law

Prof. Ewan McKendrick, BCL, MA, LLB (Edinburgh), QC (Hon) holds the chair Anglo-American Private Law. He is Professor of English Private Law and a Fellow of Lady Margaret Hall. He is a Bencher of Gray's Inn and a member of chambers at 3 Verulam Buildings, Gray's Inn. He was the Registrar of the University of Oxford from 2011 to 2018.

Comparative and Transnational Law of Civil Procedure

Prof. Olav Haazen holds the chair of Comparative and Transnational Law of Civil Procedure. He is involved in courses on comparative civil procedure.


The work of the Institute would not be possible without the support of our sponsors.

The main sponsor of the Institute of Anglo-American Law is the law firm Clifford Chance.


Some events organised under the auspices or with the support of the Institute of Anglo-American Law:

Europa Lecture Lord Mance (2016)

The Rt. Hon. the Lord Mance, Justice of UK Supreme Court, delivered Europa Lecture

17 and 18 October 2013 | two-day event on Anglo-American Law

The Leiden Institute of Anglo-American Law organised a special two-day event on Anglo-American Law.

The event commenced on Thursday 17 October with a lecture by Lord Hope of Craighead, former Deputy President of The Supreme Court of the United Kingdom. The title was ‘Scots law’s debt to Leiden’.

Leiden has a special place in the history of Scots law. For several decades, at a crucial stage of its development before the Union of 1707 when Scotland and England joined together to create the United Kingdom, it was to Leiden that many of those who were seeking to practice law in Scotland came to study. The law they took back with them to Scotland was the civil law of the ius commune, and the Scots system of private law is based on civilian principles. But it was never going be possible for Scotland to have a system of law that was entirely separate from the English common law. The lecture seeked to explore how its system became ‘mixed’ with the common law, and what it means to live a ‘mixed system’ today.

On Friday 18 October there was an inaugural lecture by prof. Olav Haazen . Prior to this there was a seminar. The title of the seminar was ‘Facts and the Law in English and Dutch decision making. Do facts really matter?’

The title of the inaugural lecture was ‘Between a right and a wrong. Ordinary cases, civil procedure, and democracy’.

Staff exchange (2011)

The Institute supports staff exchanges of Dutch and Anglo-American law faculties.

The staff exchange with Oxford in 2011 in Leiden dealt with the transnational interpretation of national law and included interesting debates on such things as the meaning of the concept of reasonableness and fairness in Dutch and other continental law, is considered a strange, maybe even dangerous animal by some English scholars and also by many English lawyers in practice.

Study abroad

The Institute promotes and financially supports studies of Dutch students at Anglo-American universities, including Oxford with its excellent Magister Juris Programme.

The Institute of Anglo-American Law has at its disposal a small fund, from which modest grants can be made to students studying for a LLM abroad, preferably in the UK or USA.

Requests with CV, motivation, recommendations and list of marks can be sent by email to the treasurer of the Institute, mrs. Y. in 't Veld - de Bok.

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