Lilian Tsourdi (E.)

Evangelia (Lilian) Tsourdi is tenured Associate Professor and Jean Monnet Chair in EU Migration Law and Governance at the Law Faculty of Maastricht University and the Maastricht Centre for European Law. Her research interests lie at the intersection of EU Law, Public International Law, and public policy/administration with a focus on human rights, asylum, migration, and governance theories. Lilian combines legal analysis with empirical qualitative research methods. She was the first scholar to systematically examine EU’s asylum policy from a combined perspective of EU constitutional and administrative law, as well as public policy governance theories. She analysed underexplored elements of asylum administrative governance, including adaptations instigated by the ‘migration crisis’, such as joint implementation patterns through EU agencies and the emergence of more significant forms EU funding. 

For her research Lilian has been awarded a number of prestigious research grants as PI (Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship by the European Commission; and VENI and Hestia grants by the Dutch Research Council) or co-PI (WP leader in the ongoing Horizon Europe ENSURED project). She has published her research widely (60 scientific publications) in the form of books, book chapters and international peer reviewed journals e.g. Common Market Law Review, Human Rights Law Review, European Constitutional Law Review, German Law Journal, European Journal of Risk Regulation, International Journal of Refugee Law. She has co-edited a Research Handbook Research Handbook on EU Migration and Asylum Law (co-editor with P. De Bruycker, Edward Elgar, 2022), two books Exploring the boundaries of refugee law: current protection challenges (co-editor with J.P. Gaucci and M. Giuffré, Brill 2015), and Intertwining Criminal Justice and Immigration Control in the EU: Theoretical, Interdisciplinary, and Practical Perspectives (Routledge, forthcoming 2024, co-editor with N. Vavoula and V. Mitsilegas), as well as  four special journal issues (Refugee Survey Quarterly 2016Maastricht Journal on European and Comparative Law 2017European Papers 2022; and Journal of Immigrant and Refugee Studies, forthcoming 2024). 

Lilian is the coordinator of the Law Faculty’s Master European Law School, a member of the Executive Board of the inter-faculty centre MACIMIDE (Maastricht Centre for Citizenship, Migration and Development), as well as a member of the Maastricht Centre for European Law. Lilian further contributes to university life through membership in a number of university-wide and faculty committees, e.g. current member of the Faculty’s Science (2023-2025) and Library committees (2022-2024). She previously served as chair of the working group responsible for implementing the review of the European Law School Master at the Law Faculty (2021),member of the university-wide Recognition and Rewards Committee (subfield: research) (since 2020) and was a member of the Maastricht Young Academy (2020-2023).

Lilian is also active as a current Editorial Board member of the International Journal of Refugee Law published by Oxford University Press, and Deputy Coordinator of the Academic Network for Legal Studies on Immigration and Asylum in Europe, the ‘Odysseus Network’. In addition, she co-chairs with UNHCR the European Academic Refugee Interdisciplinary Network (EARIN), established in the framework of the UN Global Compact on Refugees. EARIN seeks to implement the Global Compact on Refugees through research, teaching, and solidarity with displaced scholars and students. She is furthermore a Senior Research Associate of the Refugee Law Initiative (RLI) at the University of London and a Fellow of McLaughlin College at York University in Toronto.

Lilian obtained her PhD from the Law Faculty and the Institute for European Studies of the ULB (December 2016). Prior to her current appointment, she was Assistant Professor at the Law Faculty of Maastricht University (2019-2023) and a visiting professor at Sciences Po Paris (2016-2022). She also held academic positions at the Refugee Studies Centre of the University of Oxford (Departmental Lecturer, 2017-2019), the Law Faculty (Max Weber Postdoctoral Fellow, 2016-2017) and the Migration Policy Centre (Research Associate, 2015) of the European University Institute (EUI), the Institute for European Studies of the Université libre de Bruxelles (Research Associate, 2013-2015), and the Centre Charles De Visscher for International and European Law of Université catholique de Louvain (Research Associate, 2012-2016). Lilian also previously worked as an advisor for a Member of the European Parliament, as consultant for civil society organisations (ICMC, ILGA-EUROPE), as Policy and Advocacy assistant (CCME), and interned with the European Council on Refugees and Exiles (Brussels) and the Greek Council for Refugees (Athens).