SOAS University of London

Colonialism, Empire and International Law


Building on SOAS’s unique remit to develop research into Asia and Africa, the Centre for the study of Colonialism, Empire and International Law (CCEIL) aims to provide a forum for inter-disciplinary research on public international law and its historical and contemporary relationship to Colonialism and Empire. The Centre’s research, carried out by members of the School of Law, professorial research associates, visiting fellows, and post-graduate students, is organized into three research programmes: international legal history and theory; international inequality; and the international regulation of violence. Each of these programmes is responsible for it own research output and for holding events such as conferences, workshops and symposia. In addition, the Centre regularly invites guests from other academic disciplines as well as from the Arts, the London museums and libraries, and the governmental and the non-governmental sectors, to participate in its plenary events series: Afternoon Teas; Untold Stories; and the Student Salon.

At the heart of the Centre is its post-graduate community. One of the primary aims in establishing the Centre was to provide an institutional space for collaboration between faculty and students, and to develop a research culture within the post-graduate student body. PhD students together with the MA/ LLM students enrolled in the School of Law’s course, Colonialism, Empire and International Law, play a pivotal role in shaping the Centre’s research and other activities: editing the on-line journal (the Journal of Colonialism, Empire and International Law), organizing conferences and workshops, hosting the Student Salon, and publishing research papers.

Based in the heart of Bloomsbury, the Centre is within an easy walk of the British Library, and just around the corner from the excellent international law library of the Institute for Advanced Legal Studies. SOAS Library itself boasts an unrivalled collection of archival and other historical and contemporary sources on Asia and Africa. The Centre welcomes applications from scholars from a wide variety of disciplines who are engaged in research related to Colonialism, Empire and International Law and who wish to join its visiting fellow programme and participate in its activities. We are also keen to develop research links and student/faculty exchanges with other institutions. Please contact us at