NU Honors Rolland for Outstanding Research and Creative Activity


Sonia Rolland04.29.20 —President Joseph E. Aoun and Provost James C. Bean have selected Professor Sonia Rolland for Northeastern University’s Excellence in Research and Creative Innovation Award, presented to a full-time faculty member to honor outstanding research and creative activity of national and international significance. The award also recognizes the work Rolland has undertaken with economists at the Global Development Policy Center (Boston University) on the tax policy impact of trade and investment treaties for developing countries. 

“I am particularly honored to receive such a recognition of my work on international economic relations at a time when recognizing common interests and working together towards solutions beneficial to all is so important,” said Professor Rolland.

Professor Rolland's writings focus on the legal framework for sustainable and socio-economic development in international economic law. She is the author of Emerging Powers in International Economic Law — Cooperation, Competition and Transformation (with David M. Trubek) (Cambridge University Press, 2019). This book reveals how emerging economies are reshaping world trade and investment law. What will the new order look like? Rolland predicts “a more pluralist world, which is neither the continued hegemony of neoliberalism nor a full-blown alternative to it, as emerging countries are experimenting with a variety of trade and investment rules meant to better support their development priorities.” Rolland's first book, Development at the WTO (Oxford University Press; hardbound 2012, paperback 2013), proposed a legal framework for development at the WTO, combining an analysis of substantive law and institutional perspectives. 

Professor Rolland regularly acts as an expert for international and non-governmental organizations including the United Nations (sovereign debt restructuring), the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (subsidies) and the India Institute of Foreign Trade (WTO negotiations). She was recenly elected a member of the Executive Council of the American Society of International Law (ASIL) and serves as editor of ASIL Insights. Professor Rolland's research interests include public international law, international economic law and development, international environmental law and energy regulation. Through the exploration of different subject matters, she examines the intersection of legal regimes to improve the understanding of an increasingly multi-layered international and transnational legal order. She teaches Public International Law, International Trade Law, International Business Transactions and Cross-Border Civil Litigation.

Professor Rolland has held appointments as visiting professor at Columbia University School of Law, Georgetown University, Boston College, and she has taught at the University of Michigan Law School. She has also lectured at the University of Cambridge, the London School of Economics, Seikei University (Tokyo) and other prominent institutions in Europe, Asia and the Pacific. Rolland has published widely in French and in English. Her writings have appeared in the Journal of International Economic Law, Harvard International Law Journal, Georgetown Immigration Law Journal, Global Community Yearbook and the European Journal of International Law, among others. Her article, “The Precautionary Principle: Development of an International Standard” (23 Michigan Journal of International Law 429, 2002), has received several awards and its findings have been endorsed by the International Law Commission in a Resolution by the General Assembly of the United Nations.

She clerked for H.E. Gilbert Guillaume and H.E. Ronny Abraham at the International Court of Justice.

About Northeastern University School of Law

The nation’s leader in experiential legal education since 1968, Northeastern University School of Law offers the longest-running, most extensive experience-based legal education program in the country and is a national leader in legal education reform. Founded with cooperative legal education as the cornerstone of its program, Northeastern guarantees its students unparalleled practical legal work experiences. All students participate in full-time legal placements, and can choose from the more than 1,500 employers worldwide participating in the school’s signature Cooperative Legal Education Program. Northeastern University School of Law blends theory and practice, providing students with a unique set of skills and experience to successfully practice law.

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