Robert D. Sloane
R. Gordon Butler Scholar in International Law
Interests: public international law; the law of war; national security and foreign relations law; international legal theory and ethics; transnational criminal law; international human rights law and policy; criminal law and theory; international investment arbitration
After receiving his JD in 2000, Professor Robert D. Sloane worked for the International Committee of Lawyers for Tibet (now known as Tibet Justice Center) under the auspices of Yale Law School’s Robert L. Bernstein Fellowship in International Human Rights. He led fact-finding missions to Nepal, India and Tibet, wrote submissions for the U.N. Commission on Human Rights and human rights treaty bodies, represented asylum seekers, and published several reports and law journal articles on human rights. Professor Sloane then served two clerkships, first for Judge Robert D. Sack of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and then for Judge Gerard E. Lynch of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (at the time of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York). He also practiced international law at Debevoise & Plimpton in New York, where he worked on several international arbitrations and helped to litigate the initial stages of the Avena case before the International Court of Justice, challenging the convictions of Mexican nationals on death row based on violations of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations.
Before joining Boston University School of Law, Professor Sloane served as a visiting lecturer-in-law and Schell Fellow at Yale, where he taught international human rights and international arbitration, and as an associate-in-law at Columbia. He also continued to practice international law as a consultant, working on arbitrations conducted under the auspices of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes, the International Chamber of Commerce and specialized tribunals, as well as assisting with the preparation of expert opinions for foreign sovereigns and multinational corporations. Professor Sloane has published in the fields of public international law, international human rights, international criminal law, asylum law, the laws and customs of war, international legal theory, state responsibility, and international investment arbitration. His 2009 article “The Cost of Conflation: Preserving the Dualism of Jus ad Bellum and Jus in Bello in the Contemporary Law of War,” published in Volume 34 of the Yale Journal of International Law, received the Francis Lieber Prize, awarded by the American Society of International Law’s Francis Lieber Society for outstanding scholarship in the field of the law of armed conflict by an author under the age of 35. His 2007 article “Prologue to a Voluntarist War Convention,” published in Volume 106 of the Michigan Law Review, received a certificate of merit from the Francis Lieber Society based on the same criteria. Professor Sloane’s current research focuses on the uses and regulation of propaganda and ideology in international law, the law of armed conflict, national security and foreign relations law, and international legal theory and jurisprudence.
Professor Sloane has been a visiting professor at the University of Michigan Law School (Spring 2010); Harvard Law School (Spring 2011), where he served as the John Harvey Gregory Lecturer in World Organization; and the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy of Tufts University (2012).
He continues to practice periodically as a consultant in international investment arbitrations, public international arbitration, and other international dispute-resolution, as well as to carry out international human rights work on a pro bono basis, chiefly in his capacity as chairman of the board of directors of Tibet Justice Center.
In 2007, Professor Sloane received a high-level diploma in public international law from the Hague Academy of International Law, one of only three U.S. citizens to receive the degree in the past two decades. In fall 2012, Professor Sloane was elected to the American Law Institute, and in 2013, he was named the R. Gordon Butler Scholar in International Law.
He also received the 2013 Francis Deák Prize for "On the Use and Abuse of Necessity in the Law of State Responsibility," published in Volume 106 of the American Journal of International Law, awarded by the American Society of International Law for meritorious scholarship in the Journal by a younger author.