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Dr Alexander Gilder

Alexander Gilder

Director, Global Law Programmes (PGT)

Deputy Director, Global Law at Reading (GLAR)

Deputy Exams Officer

Module convenor for Contemporary Issues in International Law (LWMCIL), Foundations of International Law (LW2FIL), and Co-convenor for International Law and Global Security (LW3IGS)

Areas of interest

Dr Gilder works on areas related to international peace and security, such as UN peace operations, peacebuilding, and human security. His research is interdisciplinary, drawing on perspectives from law and international relations. Alex investigates various aspects of UN peacekeeping including stabilization, counter-terrorism, the rule of law, the protection of civilians, and security sector reform. His research has also applied the multidisciplinary concept of human security to examine the role of the individual in international law. 

Alex has published on the aforementioned topics as well as other areas of international law including the law of occupation, international human rights law, and the law on the use of force. His research has appeared in journals and volumes, such as International Peacekeeping, the Journal of International PeacekeepingGlobal Policy, the Netherlands International Law Review, the Indian Journal of International Law, the Journal of International Humanitarian Legal Studies, the Wisconsin International Law Journal, the NYU Journal of International Law and Politics, the Utrecht Law Review, the Asian Yearbook of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, and the Palgrave Encyclopedia of Peace and Conflict Studies.

His monograph, Stabilization and Human Security in UN Peace Operations (Routledge 2022), includes case studies on Mali (MINUSMA), the Central African Republic (MINUSCA), and South Sudan (UNMISS) that examine whether the concept of human security can be seen in the UN's current stabilization activities.

Postgraduate supervision

Alex welcomes PhD applications that fall within his above areas of interest.


Alex teaches on the following modules:

  • Contemporary Issues in International Law (PG) (Module convenor)
  • International Law and Global Security (UG) (Module co-convenor)
  • Foundations of International Law (UG) (Module convenor)
  • Introduction to International Law (PG)
  • The Use of Military Force (PG)
  • Public Law 1 (UG)
  • Criminal Law (UG)

He is particularly interested in clinical legal education and has been involved in the development and supervision of international law and human rights-based clinical projects. In one such project, a collaboration with the Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies (Somaliland), students produced a publicly accessible website on human rights and peacebuilding which is available at The project won the British International Studies Association (BISA) Distinguished Excellence in Teaching International Studies Award 2022, the Royal Holloway Team Teaching Prize 2022 and a Commendation in Royal Holloway’s 2021 Team Teaching Prize. You can read more about the project in the European Journal of Legal Education.


Alex is Lecturer in International Law and Security, Director of the Global Law Programmes (PGT), and Deputy Director of Global Law at Reading. Before joining Reading, he taught at Royal Holloway, University of London, the University of Essex, and City, University of London.

He is actively externally as Co-convenor of the International Law Section at the Society of Legal Scholars and serves as an External Examiner at both the University of Lincoln and Glasgow Caledonian University. He is a member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of International Peacekeeping and has been involved with editing several other journals including as Editor (Developments in State Practice) for the Asian Yearbook of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, the Editorial Assistant for the Journal on the Use of Force and International Law,and an Executive Editor for the Utrecht Journal of International and European Law.

Alex’s expertise is utilised internationally as a Visiting Professor at the Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies, University of Hargeisa, where he delivers a postgraduate module on Peace, Conflict & Human Rights and has been a Guest Instructor on the University of Notre Dame’s London Law Programme and Guest Lecturer at Green Templeton College, University of Oxford.

Academic qualifications

PhD (City, University of London), LLM (Utrecht University), PgCAP (City, University of London) LLB (Hons) (University of Lincoln).

Recent speaking engagements and conference participation

  • ‘Accountability and Impunity in Global Crises: The Responsibility of the United Nations During Stabilization Operations’, ISA-IDSS Conference on Global Crises: Responses and Recoveries, 17-19 June 2022 (speaker).
  • ‘Stabilization and Human Security in UN Peace Operations’, Humans of Security Podcast, Trilateral Research, April 2022 (invited guest).
  • ‘Stabilization and Human Security in UN Peace Operations’, Human Security and Peacebuilding Programme, Royal Roads University, 3 November 2021 (invited guest lecture). Available to watch here.
  • ‘Where now for UN peace operations? A reflection’, General and Complete Disarmament: Contemporary Perspectives on World Peace Through World Law, City, University of London, 15 September 2021 (invited guest).
  • ‘UN peace operations and (re)building the rule of law’, BISA 2021 Annual Conference, 21-23 June 2021.
  • ‘Clinical Legal Education, International Collaborations, Human Rights and Virtual Opportunities’, Turning Challenges into Opportunities: Justice Education in Times of Crises, Northumbria University, 16-18 June 2021 (with Nicola Antoniou and Professor Jill Marshall).
  • ‘Responding to Diverse Security Threats Amid Fragmentation of the International Legal Order’, 10th Annual Conference of the Cambridge International Law Journal, 18-20 March 2021.


Recent events organised

  • UN Involvement in Afghanistan: Where Next for the International Community, Global Law at Reading and the Afghan and Central Asian Association, 16 May 2022 (organiser)
  • ‘Responding to Complex Relationships in International Law’, SLS International Law Section PhD Workshop, 13 May 2022 (co-organiser with Dr Arman Sarvarian).
  • International Law Association British Branch Spring Conference 2022, University of Surrey, 29-30 April 2022 (organising committee).
  • ‘The Duty of States to Cooperate in International Law’, 30th Annual SLS/BIICL Workshop, 29 November 2021 (co-organiser with Dr Arman Sarvarian, Dr Jean-Pierre Gauci, Kristin Hausler and Dr Berenika Drazewska).
  • Discussion Group: Legal Pluralism, Voluntary Compliance, and Universal International Law, SLS International Law Section, 28 May 2021 (co-organiser with Dr Arman Sarvarian).
  • The meaning of ‘stabilization’ in peace operations, Webinar for the BISA Peacekeeping and Peacebuilding Working Group, 7 May 2021 (organiser and chair).
  • SLS PhD Workshop on International Law, SLS International Law Section, 30 April 2021 (co-organiser with Dr Arman Sarvarian).
  • Discussion Group: Nuclear Weapons and International Law, SLS International Law Section, 13 January 2021 (co-organiser with Dr Arman Sarvarian).
  • Militarisation and the Local in Peacekeeping: Ambition, Pragmatism, and Adaptability, BISA Working Group on Peacekeeping and Peacebuilding, City, University of London, 20 September 2019 (co-organiser with Sabrina White).