Kevin Jon Heller

Kevin Jon Heller


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Kevin Jon Heller is Professor of International Law and Security at the University of Copenhagen’s Centre for Military Studies, which is part of the Department of Political Science. He is an Academic Member of Doughty Street Chambers in London and a Member of the Advisory Board the Bar Human Rights Committee of England and Wales. He also currently serves as Special Advisor to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court on War Crimes.

Prof. Heller’s books include The Nuremberg Military Tribunals and the Origins of International Criminal Law (OUP, 2011) and four co-edited volumes: The Handbook of Comparative Criminal Law (Stanford, 2010), The Hidden Histories of War Crimes Trials (OUP, 2013), the Oxford Handbook of International Criminal Law (OUP, 2018), and Contingency in International Law: On the Possibility of Different Legal Histories  (OUP, 2021). He also serves as the Editor-in-Chief of the international-law blog Opinio Juris, where he has blogged for more than 17 years.

Prof. Heller has been involved in the practice of international law throughout his career, most notably acting as one of Radovan Karadzic's formally-appointed legal associates at the ICTY; serving as the plaintiffs’ sole expert witness in Salim v Mitchell, a successful Alien Tort Statute case against the psychologists who designed and administered the CIA’s torture program; functioning as UNITAD’s Special Expert for International Criminal and Humanitarian Law, where he designed training programmes for the Iraqi judges, prosecutors, and investigators involved in Da’esh trials; and acting as legal advisor to and expert witness for Ramzi bin al-Shibh, who was one of the defendants in the 9/11 trial at Guantanamo Bay. 

Current research

I am currently writing a book on the Vietnam War and international law with Sam Moyn, Chancellor Kent Professor of Law and History at Yale University.

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