SOAS University of London

School of Law

Professor Thoko Kaime

LLB (Hons)(Malawi), LLM (Pretoria), PhD (SOAS, London)
  • Teaching
  • Research
  • Expertise
  • Publications


Thoko Kaime
School of Law

Senior Teaching Fellow

Law, Environment and Development Centre (LEDC)

Member, Law, Environment & Development Centre

Professor Thoko Kaime
Email address:
+44 (0)20 7898 4651
SOAS University of London
Thornhaugh Street, Russell Square, London WC1H 0XG
Russell Square: College Buildings
Office No:
Academic Support Hours:
By Appointment


Professor Thoko Kaime is Chairholder of African Legal Studies at the University Bayreuth and a Senior Teaching Fellow in the School of Law at SOAS. Furthermore, he is the project leader for the Tanzanian-German Centre for Eastern African Legal Studies (TGCL) at the University of Dar es Salaam and also serves as trustee for the Essex Wildlife Trust. Prior to his appointment at the University of Bayreuth, Prof. Dr. Kaime worked was Deputy Dean for Postgraduate Studies at the University of Essex as well as the Co-Chair for legal aspects of sustainable energy for all community of practice at the George-Washington University (USA). Prof. Dr. Kaime is a public international lawyer and maintains research and teaching interests in human rights and international environmental law. His work is an ongoing socio-legal critique of international legal arrangements which he expresses through a consideration of a number of critical issues in human rights and sustainability governance. He has written extensively on these subjects, focusing on the intersection between law, legitimacy and public participation in international rule-making and policy implementation. 



Thematic interests
International energy law and policy (including sustainable energy for all; access to energy and human rights; energy finance and human rights) Law and natural resources (including law and policy for ecosystems services; regulatory frameworks for climate change; access to water; risk regulation in natural resources) International human rights law (including human rights in Africa; children's rights; refugee rights) Research methods (including socio-legal methodologies; disruptive discourse and innovation) 
Regional interests
Southern Africa; East Africa; West Africa; South America

Current work
Dr Kaime’s current work investigates role of disruptive discourse in shaping progressive action and accountability frameworks in international law. In particular, he is investigating the extent to which human rights language can be deployed as a strategic tool for the realisation of sustainable energy for all including the articulation of a general right of access to basic energy services.



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Languages: Chinyanja; Chiyao

Available for
  • TV
  • Radio
  • Press
  • Briefings
  • Short Term Consultancy
  • Long Term Consultancy
Regional Expertise
  • Africa
Country Expertise
  • Botswana
  • Kenya
  • Malawi
  • Rwanda
  • South Africa
  • Tanzania
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe


Authored Books

Kaime, Thoko (2011) The Convention on the Rights of the Child: A cultural legitimacy critique. Groningen: Europa Law Publishing.

Kaime, Thoko (2009) The African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child: A socio-legal perspective. Pretoria, South Africa: Pretoria University Law Press.


Kaime, Thoko (2011) 'Cultural legitimacy and regulatory transitions for climate change: A discursive framework'. Carbon & Climate Law Review, (3), pp 321-329.

Kaime, Thoko (2010) '’Vernacularising’ the Convention on the Right of the Child: Rights and culture as analytic tools'. International Journal of Children’s Rights, (18) 4, pp 637-653.

Kaime, Thoko (2009) 'The African Children’s Charter: Does it represent a relevant vision of childhood and children’s rights?'. Children's Legal Rights Journal, (29), pp 11-29.

Kaime, Thoko (2009) 'The struggle for context in the protection of children’s rights: Understanding the core concepts of the African Children’s Charter'. Journal of Legal Pluralism and Unofficial Law, (58), pp 33-68.

Kaime, Thoko (2009) 'The foundations of rights in the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child: A historical and philosophical account'. African Journal of Legal Studies, (3), pp 119-136.

Chirwa, Danwood and Kaime, Thoko (2008) 'Where are the missing pieces? Constructing a mosaic of the CRC and the African Children’s Charter in Malawi’s law and policy'. Malawi Law Journal, (2), pp 85-114.

Kaime, Thoko (2005) 'The Convention on the Rights of the Child and the cultural legitimacy of children’s rights in Africa: Some reflections'. African Human Rights Law Journal, (5) 2, pp 221-238.

Kaime, Thoko (2004) 'From lofty jargon to durable solutions: Unaccompanied refugee children and the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child'. International Journal of Refugee Law, (16) 3, pp 336-348.

Kaime, Thoko (2004) 'Beyond social programs: The right to health under the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights'. East African Journal of Peace & Human Rights, (10) 2, pp 192-205.

Kaime, Thoko (2004) 'SADC and human rights: Fitting human rights into the trade matrix'. African Security Review, (13) 1, pp 109-117.

Kaime, Thoko (2004) 'Whose rights are they anyway?: A critical analysis of the international supervision mechanisms for economic, social and cultural rights'. Zambia Law Journal, (36), pp 119.

Kaime, Thoko (2003) 'Culture or children’s rights...or both?'. ChildrenFirst, (50), pp 15-26.

Edited Books or Journals

Kaime, Thoko, (ed.), (2014) International climate change law and policy : cultural legitimacy in adaptation and mitigation. New York: Routledge. (Routledge Research in International Environmental Law).

Book Chapters

Kaime, Thoko (2009) 'Socio-legal approaches to children’s rights under the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child: A discussion of methodology'. In: Atkin, Bill, (ed.), The International Survey of Family Law 2009 Edition. Bristol: Family Law, pp 255-274.

Kaime, Thoko (2008) 'The protection of refugee children under the African human rights system: finding durable solutions in international law'. In: Sloth-Nielsen, Julia, (ed.), Children’s rights in Africa: A legal perspective. London: Ashgate, pp 183-197.

Kaime, Thoko (2004) 'Children’s right to health'. In: Coetzee, E. and Streak, J., (eds.), Monitoring child socio-economic rights in South Africa: Achievements and challenges. Cape Town: Idasa, pp 127-169.

Book Reviews

Kaime, Thoko (2006) 'Review of J Hatchard, M Ndulo and P Slinn, 'Comparative Constitutionalism and Good Governance in the Commonwealth: An Eastern and Southern African Perspective''. Journal of African Law, (50) 1, pp 85-87.

Kaime, Thoko (2004) 'Review of T. W. Bennett, 'Customary Law in South Africa''. Journal of African Law, (48) 2, pp 271-273.

Kaime, Thoko (2004) 'Review of C. Grant Bowman and A. Kuenyahia, 'Women and Law in sub-Saharan Africa''. Journal of African Law, (48) 2, pp 273.


This list was last generated on Friday, 27th May 2022, 07:40 Europe/London.