Interview Manuella Appiah

Manuella Appiah
  • 28 years
  • Researcher, Global Governance Program at The Hague Institute for Global Justice
  • Nationality: Ghanaian/Dutch
  • Study: International and European Public Law: Accent Human Rights (LL.M.)
  • Year of graduation: January 2012
  • Linkedin

‘I was surprised how in depth the courses were! The lecturers were able to take the students from the basis to the advanced level in just a few weeks’.

Alumna Manuella Appiah about the program:



Can you describe what your current position involves?

First and foremost I take part in developing and executing (new) projects under the Global Governance program. In short, the Global Governance program of The Hague Institute detects and develops innovative solutions in the multilateral system of governance concerning matters such as cyber, labor rights, intellectual property rights and international migration. In order to be able to develop new projects, a lot of literature research is undertaken as to find the niche in the system which we can hopefully develop innovative plans of action for. In addition, I also organize and manage international conferences and roundtables on contemporary matters in the field of international law and global justice.

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Could you give an example of a recent project you participated in?

I was recently involved in the organization of a roundtable on the enforcement of fundamental labor rights in manufacturing industries. This roundtable brought together about thirty stakeholders to discuss the fragmentation in fundamental labor rights instruments and what can be done to ensure that multinational corporations effectively live up to their international obligations. For this roundtable, the Rana Plaza disaster was used as the case study.

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How did you get in touch with this company?

One of my professors at the Law Faculty recommended The Hague Institute to me when I was in the last phase of completing the master’s program. I took his advice and solicited for the position of a project officer which – after a long process - thankfully resulted in a contract.

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What has surprised you about you Master's program?

How in depth the courses were! I was really surprised regarding how much I learnt while taking the courses International Trade Law and European Competition Law. The lecturers were able to take the students from the basis to the advanced level in just a few weeks. I also really enjoyed how engaging the professors were in the master’s program. Most lectures had an atmosphere of seriousness, while also being collegial.

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During your studies, did you also participate in extracurricular activities? If yes, how did these activities contribute to your personal development?

I was part of the Top Class during my bachelor at Tilburg Law School. This exposed me to very important legal subjects which students do not get to learn in the regular classes. In addition, I greatly improved my presentation skills while participating in the Top Class. This is highly useful for my current job, since I often have to present projects to colleagues and partners.

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What is your ambition? Where do you see yourself in 2020?

I want to make a difference in the world, as cliché as this may sound. By 2020, I hope to be part of a team that executes hands-on projects which promote democracy and human rights in a developing nation. I would be honored if I can assist in creating practical and effective solutions to complex international law challenges for a prominent international body, such as the UN Department for political affairs or the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

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Who gives you inspiration and why?

One of my role models is Professor Willem van Genugten. I admire the lens which he uses in analyzing international law and how he manages to move through theoretical research and practical advisory responsibilities.

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