Ioana Cismas

Dr. Ioana Cismas is a Scholar-in-residence at the Center for Human Rights and Global Justice at NYU School of Law. Her current research critically explores the dual legitimation of law and religion in various contexts, including in transitional justice settings, in the realisation of economic, social and cultural rights, and in relation to questions of judicial impartiality.

Prior to moving to NYU, Ioana served as a consultant to the UN Special Rapporteur on transitional justice while working for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva. She was also the Coordinator of the Law Clinic at the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights. Previously, she was a researcher at the Geneva Academy and worked on the intersection of economic, social and cultural rights and civil and political rights. She provided legal and policy expertise to various stakeholders, including the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs. 

Between 2009 and 2012 she has acted as legal adviser to Jean Ziegler, member of the Advisory Committee of the UN Human Rights Council. She managed the drafting process and contributed substantively to the Study on discrimination in the context of the right to food and the Study of the Human Rights Council Advisory Committee on severe malnutrition and childhood diseases with children affected by noma as an example.

Ioana lectures on human rights law, including economic, social and cultural rights and in particular the right to food, international law and religion, and transitional justice.

Ioana has a PhD in International Law (summa cum laude) from the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, a Master in International Affairs from the Graduate Institute, and a bachelor degree in Political Science and Sociology from the National School of Political Studies and Public Administration in Bucharest.

Her publications include: 

Dr. Ioana Cismas can be contacted for inquires about her work with Jean Ziegler, for conferences, lectures, legal consulting requests at

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