Researchers at UCD

Suzanne J Egan


School Of Law
Sutherland School of Law
Dublin 4

Tel: +353 1 7164158


Suzanne Egan lectures in International and European Human Rights Law at the School of Law.  She has published widely on human rights issues in leading peer reviewed journals and her recent book, The UN Human Rights Treaty System: Law and Procedure (Bloomsbury, 2011) was shortlisted for the Irish Association of Law Teachers, Kevin Boyle prize for outstanding legal scholarship. Suzanne is a graduate of U.C.D. and Osgoode Hall Law School, Toronto and a qualified barrister.  Prior to lecturing at UCD, she was the Legal Supervisor of an independent research centre on refugee law and policy in Canada and a Research Assistant at the Law Reform Commission in Ireland.  She has engaged in human rights training for various non-governmental organisations, the Council of Europe as well as members of the legal profession. In 2000, she was appointed by the government to serve as a Member of the Irish Human Rights Commission and was subsequently re-appointed for a second term in 2006. She has been a visiting professor at De Paul Law School, Chicago, the University of Connecticut and a Visiting Fellow at Harvard Law School's Human Rights Program (2011-2012).



Conference Contributions

Egan, S (2010) See No Evil, Speak No Evil and See No Evil in Europe. [International Refereed Conference], Law and Society Association, Annual Conference, Chicago, USA , 27-MAY-10 - 30-MAY-10.
Egan, S (2011) [Roundtable Participant], Office of the High Commissioner of Human Rights, Academic Consultation on Strengthening the UN Human Rights Treaty Bodies, Lucerne, Switzerland , 24-OCT-11 - 26-OCT-11.
Egan, S (2012) Reform of the UN Human Rights Treaty System. [Invited Oral Presentation], Northeastern University School of Law, Faculty Colloquium, Boston, USA , 08-MAY-12 - 08-MAY-12.
Egan, S (2012) The UN Human Rights Committee: A Critical Analysis. [Invited Lecture], International Conference on Treaty Bodies and Int¿l Accountability for State Human Rights Obligations, Minerva Center for Human Rights, Hebrew University of Jerusalem , 12-SEP-12 - 13-SEP-12.
Egan, S (2013) Implementing Ireland¿s Human Rights Commitments on Freedom of Religion. [Invited Lecture], Ireland and the Human Rights Council: Where to From Here?, Irish Centre for Human Rights, NUI Galway , 01-FEB-13 - 01-FEB-13.
Egan, S (2014) Individual Complaints under the OPIC-CRC: Setting Goals and Managing Expectations. [Roundtable Participant], International Colloquium on the Rights of the Child, University of Geneva, Global Studies Institute , 08-OCT-14 - 09-OCT-14.
Egan, S (2014) Extraordinary Rendition. [Invited Lecture], Institute of Asia and Pacific Studies - Seminar Series, University of Nottingham, School of Politics and International Relations , 20-MAR-14 - 20-MAR-14.
S. Egan; (2009) An All-Island Charter of Rights: Provenance, Process and Prospects. [Invited Oral Presentation], An All-Island Charter of Rights, U.C.D. School of Law, Joint Committee of the Irish Human Rights Commission and the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission , 06-NOV-09 - 06-NOV-09.
S. Egan; (2008) Discussant on topic of Constiutionalisation of the European Court of Human Rights. [Oral Presentation], 2008 U.C.D. European Law Forum: Constitutionalization: In Search of More Effective Human Rights Protection in Europe',, School of Law, U.C.D , 25-JAN-08 - 25-JAN-08.
S. Egan; (2007) An All-Island Charter of Rights: Risk or Opportunity?. [Invited Oral Presentation], The Consitution at 70, Trinity College Dublin , 08-JUN-07 - 09-JUN-07.
Suzanne Egan; (2006) Extraordinary Rendition: The Challenge to International Human Rights Law. [Oral Presentation], Asylum, Migration and Human Rights, Newcastle , 20-SEP-06 - 21-SEP-06.
Suzanne Egan; (2007) Trafficking in Ireland: Protecting the Victims. [Invited Oral Presentation], European Slave Trade: Character, Causes & Challenges, Trinity College Dublin , 04-JUL-07.
Suzanne Egan; (2006) Periodic Reporting under the ICCPR. [Invited Oral Presentation], EU China Human Rights Exchange, Irish Centre for Human Rights, NUI Galway , 31-MAR-06 - 01-APR-06.
Suzanne Egan; (2005) Bar Council CPD Conference. [Chaired Session], The European Convention on Human Rights, Distillery Building, Dublin , 03-DEC-05.
Suzanne Egan; (2004) Interpreting the Refugee Definition: Problems and Prospects. [Invited Lecture], Judicial Studies Institute Conference, Kildare , 25-JUN-04 - 27-JUN-04.
Suzanne Egan; (2004) Trafficking in Women and Girls. [Invited Oral Presentation], Department of Foreign Affairs, Sixth Annual Forum on Human Rights, Dublin , 04-DEC-04.
Suzanne Egan; (2002) Refugee Law in Ireland. [Invited Oral Presentation], Council of Europe, Second Round Table with National Human Rights Institutions, Belfast , 07-NOV-02.
Suzanne Egan; (2002) Ireland and Incoporation of the European Convention on Human Rights. [Oral Presentation], The European Convention on Human Rights: Lessons from England, Scotland and Ireland, UCD , 18-OCT-02.
Suzanne Egan; (2001) Nexus to a Convention Ground. [Other], Second Colloquium on Challenges in International Refugee Law, Michigan University , 17-MAR-01.


Employer: Government of Ireland
Position: Commissioner


Year 1988 Institution: University College Dublin
Qualification: BL Subject:
Year 1991 Institution: Hon Society of Kings Inns, IRL
Qualification: LLM Subject:
Year 1986 Institution: York University, Ontario
Qualification: BCL Subject:

Other Activities

Member of the Irish Human Rights Commission (2000 - present)



Egan,S; (2011) The UN Human Rights Treaty System: Law and Procedure. Dublin: Bloomsbury. [Details]

Book Chapters

Egan, S. (2014) 'Implementing the ECHR in Ireland: Past, Present and Future' In: Egan, S., Thornton. L & Walsh, J (eds). Ireland and the European Convention on Human Rights: 60 Years and Beyond. Dublin: Bloomsbury. , pp.1-15 [Details]
Egan, S. and Forde, A. (2014) 'From Judgment to Compliance: Domestic Implementation of the Judgments of the Strasbourg Court' In: Egan, S., thornton. L & Walsh, J (eds). Ireland and the European Convention on Human Rights: 60 Years and Beyond. Dublin: Bloomsbury. , pp.17-36 [Details]
S.Egan and P. Brazil; (2009) 'The Influence of the ECHR on Irish Asylum Law' In: U.Kilkelly (eds). The ECHR in Irish Law. Ireland: Jordans. , pp.353-397 [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (2003) 'Sanctuary in Strasbourg: The Implications of the European Covention on Human Rights on Irish Asylum law and Policy' In: Ursula Fraser and Colin Harvey (eds). Sanctuary in Ireland: Perspectives on Asylum Law and Policy. Dublin: Institute of Public Administration. , pp.51-81 [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (2003) 'Refugee Law' In: Urusula Kilkelly (eds). The ECHR in Irish Law. Dublin: Jordans. , pp.81-110 [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (2000) 'Succession Rights under the European Convention on Human Rights' In: Suzanne Egan; (eds). Liber Memorialis for Professor James Brady. Dublin: Round Hall: Sweet and Maxwell. [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (2000) 'European Asylum Policy: Reflections on the Tampere Conclusions' In: Suzanne Egan; (eds). Irish Human Rights Review. Dublin: Round Hall. , pp.168-197 [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (1994) 'European Integration and Refugees' In: Suzanne Egan; (eds). Human Rights: A European Perspective. Dublin: Round Hall Press. [Details]

Edited Books

Egan, S., Thornton. L. and Walsh J (Ed.). (2014) Ireland and the European Convention on Human Rights: 60 Years and Beyond. Dublin: Bloomsbury. [Details]

Peer Reviewed Journals

Suzanne Egan (2015) 'Tackling the Rise of Child labour in Europe: Homework for the European Court of Human Rights'. International and Comparative Law Quarterly, 64 (3):601-630. [Details]
Suzanne Egan (2013) 'Strengthening the United Nations Human Rights Treaty Body System'. Human Rights Law Review, 13 :209-243. [Details]
Suzanne Egan (2013) 'The New Complaints Mechanism for the Convention on the Rights of the Child: A Mini Step Forward for Children?'. International Journal of Children's Rights, :1-19. [Details]
Suzanne Egan (2012) 'The Necessary Elements of Torture: A Consideration of the Views of the Human Rights Committee in Giri v Nepal'. Dublin University Law Journal, 35 :300-305. [Details]
Egan, S & Murray, R; (2010) 'Casting a Cold Eye on the Origins and Development of an All-Island Charter of Rights'. Fordham International Law Journal, 34 . [Details]
Egan, S; (2009) 'The Optional Protocol to the UN Convention Against Torture: Paying the Price for Prevention'. Irish Jurist, . [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (2008) 'Protecting the victims of trafficking: problems and prospects'. European Human Rights Law Review, 1 :106-119. [Details]
Suzanne Egan and Rachel Murray; (2007) 'A Charter of Rights for Ireland: An Unknown Quantity in the Belfast Agreement'. International and Comparative Law Quarterly, 56 :797-835. [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (2003) ''The European Convention on Human Rights Act 2003: A Missed Opportunity for Domestic Human Rights Litigation''. Dublin University Law Journal, 25 :230-248. [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (1998) 'Human Rights Considerations in Extradition and Expulsion Cases: The European Convention on Human Rights Revisited'. Contemporary Issues in Irish Law and Politics, 2 :188-215. [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (1995) 'Asylum in Ireland'. European Review of Public Law, 7 . [Details]

Other Journals

Suzanne Egan and Andy Storey; (1992) 'European Asylum Policy: A Fortress Under Construction' Trocaire Development Review :49-65. [Details]

Published Reports

Suzanne Egan and Kevin Costello; (1999) Refugee Law Comparative Study. Government Publications, Dublin. [Details]

Book Reviews

S. Egan; (2007) Book Review of S. Greer, The European Convention on Human Rights: Achievements, Problems and Prospects (Cambridge University Press, 2006). (2007) 42 Irish Jurist: Book Reviews [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (1998) Book Review of B.Dickson ed. Human Rights and the European Convention. Irish Jurist: Book Reviews [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (1998) Book Review of Janis, Kay and Bradley eds. European Human Rights Law. Irish Jurist: Book Reviews [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (1996) Book Review of R. Cook ed., Human Rights of Women. International and Comparative Law Quarterly: Book Reviews [Details]


Suzanne Egan; (2001) The Illegal Immigrants (Trafficking) Act 2000. Dublin: Annotations [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (2000) The Immigration Act 1999. Dublin: Annotations [Details]
Suzanne Egan; (1997) The Refugee Act 1996. Dublin: Annotations [Details]


Research Interests

International Human Rights Law
European Human Rights Law
Asylum Law and Policy (Domestic and International)

Research Projects

Sponsor : Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences (IRCHSS)
Title : A Charter For Rights For Ireland
Start Date / End Date : 09-SEP-03 / 31-JAN-10
Sponsor : Dept. of Justice, Equality & Law Reform (DJELR)
Title : Comparative Study between Irish legislation and that of our EU partners to ascertain what changes might be necessary to the Refugee Act, 1996 to align Irish policy more closely with that of our EU partners.
Start Date / End Date : 15-JUL-98 / 31-DEC-98


Teaching Philosophy

My teaching philosophy emphasizes the importance of active learning in creating the conditions for independent and creative thinking and the achievement of positive learning outcomes. The essential characteristics of a good, research-active teacher include good communication skills, openness, responsiveness to diverse student needs and a constant commitment to student feedback.

Enhancement of Teaching

My experience as a teacher confirms the challenges identified in pedagogical literature faced in teaching international human rights law (IHRL) to law students and in teaching IHRL to students with no previous legal training. Law students find it difficult to conceptualise IHRL as "law", in the absence of binding methods of enforcement, especially when the systems in place are largely unfamiliar to them (Berman, 1985). Non-law students find it difficult to navigate alien material, such as judgments and legal reasoning. My classes to law students also tend to be very large, further influencing the pedagogical space in which I am operating. I have experimented with numerous tools to meet these challenges, from module design, reading material, methods of assessment, Blackboard and my personal teaching style. On the latter, I have increased my efforts in active learning by regularly encouraging student participation in classes using visual imagery and case studies to make the material more accessible. My post-graduate seminars, tend to be smaller, thus opening space for more active learning methodologies. Starting from a base where I assigned reading material in advance and flagged "issues for discussion", I have moved to a point where I use rounds as "icebreakers" and organise syndicates for debates and problem-based learning sessions. An entry in my portfolio in 2010, based on student feedback, records my reflections on the usefulness of this particular technique in an inter-disciplinary setting. I have also developed my methods of ensuring smart feedback on assessments.