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The International Association of Constitutional Law convenes a Research Group for studying under a comparative perspective the way Constitutions deal with gender equality and women’s rights as well as the adjudications of international and domestic courts, which represent a fundamental field of study for assessing the respect of contemporary constitutionalism. Notably, the Research Group focuses on crucial issues still pending in the fields of the protection of women’s rights, such as the guarantee of equality in marital relations, the protection of women’s autonomy and independence, sexual and reproductive rights, especially the right to abortion, states’ commitment in erasing specific gender-related physical, psychological and sexual violence.

The Research Group also focuses on issues as substantive gender equality, intersectional discriminations, representation of women and people with different sexual orientation in the legal profession, role of women in constitutional making, access to public services, right to political participation, sexual harassment and violence against women, reproductive rights, the impact of religious norms on women’s rights, women’s rights in war and post-conflict situations, and transitional justice.

Aiming thus to address these topics both at the level of constitutional theory and at the level of the practical aspects on rights’ protection, the group welcomes constitutional law scholars, constitutional designers and practitioners in the field of women’s rights.

Indicative Activities

The Research Group aims at acting as a platform for facilitating a critical dialogue among scholars working on gender issues in relation to constitutional law, also by establishing collaborations with educational institutions, international organizations, national human rights institutions and civil society organizations.

The Research Group will therefore perform the following main activities:

(1) To organize periodic workshops and roundtables (including webinars) on various issues and themes concerning the intersection of gender and constitutional law. These workshops/roundtables may have different purposes, e.g., discussing draft papers/articles written by RG’s members; debating topical issues of national or comparative constitutional law; and engaging with non-academic actors working in the field.

(2) To apply for research grants to conduct research on issues related to gender and constitutional law.

(3) To organize panels related to gender and constitutional law at international conferences, including at the IACL-AIDC World Congresses.

(4) To foster the gender perspective in the IACL-AIDC activities and to increase gender-sensitivity in academia.

(5) To contribute gender-related pieces to the IACL-AIDC blog.


The blog of the research group is under construction. It will provide all the information related to the Research Group’s activities, it will represent the main platform of confrontation among the Research Group members, and between them and the civil society, and it will collect blogs and articles gathered thanks to the contributions of the members but also open to the free contributions of experts and people engaged in the field of women’s rights.

Current members of the group

Surya Deva
Associate Professor of Law, City University of Hong Kong

Sophie Weerts
Associate Professor of Public Law, University of Lausanne, Switzerland

Irene Spigno
Director of the Centre of Comparative Constitutional Studies of the Inter-American Academy of Human Rights

Francesco Biagi
Adjunct Professor of Comparative Constitutionalism, University of Bologna School of Law

Elena Yi
Ph.D., University of Berkley

Ruijun Dai
Associate Professor, Institute of International Law, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS); Secretary General, Center for Gender and Law Studies of the Law Institute of CASS

Ana Micaela Alterio
Associate Professor of Constitutional Law, ITAM (Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México)

Helena Maria Alviar Garcia
Professor of Legal Theory, University of Los Andes

Ruth Rubio Marin
Professor of Constitutional Law, University of Sevilla

Kelly Picard
Post-doctoral Researcher at the School of Advanced Studies in the Social Sciences, France 

Bertil Emrah Oder
Dean of the Koç University Law School, Director of the Koç Center for Gender Studies (Koç-Kam)

Eleonora Ceccherini
Associate Professor of Constitutional Law, University of Genoa

Simona Rodriquez
Assistant Professor of Comparative Public Law, University of Genoa

Lídia Balogh
Research Fellow, Institute for Legal Studies
Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Centre for Social Sciences

Magdalena Ines Correa Henao
Director of the Department of Constitutional Law, Externado, Colombia

Nora Götzmann
Senior Adviser, Business and Human Rights, Danish Institute for Human Rights; Adjunct Researcher, Centre for Social Responsibility in Mining, Sustainable Minerals Institute, The University of Queensland

Francesca Brunetta d’Usseaux
Associate Professor in Comprative Law, University of Genoa


Contact Details

  • Valentina Rita Scotti
    Post-doctoral Fellow in Comparative Public Law, Koç University School of Law, Istanbul, Turkey
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  • Janaìna Penalva
    Professor of Constitutional Law at the University of Brasília, Brazil
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  • Irene Spigno
    Director of the Center of Comparative Constitutional Studies, Academia Interamericana de Derechos Humanos (Saltillo, Coahuila, México)
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