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dr. G. van der Schyff

Associate Professor 

Tilburg Law School
Department for Public Law, Jurisprudence and Legal History


Gerhard van der Schyff's main research deals with various topics of comparative and European constitutional law and fundamental rights. This includes a focus on constitutional identity, constitutional review by the judiciary, church and state relations, the right to freedom of religion and the constitutional relationship between the EU and its Member States. Gerhard has published widely, including in journals such as the European Constitutional Law Review and the Oxford Journal of Law and Religion. In 2015 he held a Humboldt Foundation Fellowship for Experienced Researchers at the Chair of Professor Christian Calliess at the Free University of Berlin, researching various aspects of constitutional identity. He also won a VENI subsidy, funded by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO) on the topic of constitutional review in the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and South Africa, which resulted in his second doctorate in 2010 from Leiden University. Gerhard's first doctorate was awarded in 2005 from the University of Antwerp in Belgium on the limitation of rights under the ECHR and the South African Bill of Rights. He has spoken widely at universities and conferences, including events in the United Kingdom, Iceland and Poland. Gerhard's research has been cited in various academic works and by various judges, including Justice LeBel of the Supreme Court of Canada (Alberta v. Hutterian Brethren of Wilson Colony, 2009 SCC 37), Judge of Appeal Ponnan of the Supreme Court of Appeal of South Africa (De Lange v. Presiding Bishop of the Methodist Church of Southern Africa, [2014] ZASCA 151), Justice Shore of the Federal Court of Canada (Bennett v. Canada (Attorney General), 2011 FC 1310), Justice Jubran of the Supreme Court of Israel (sitting as the High Court of Justice in matter 7348/08 in 2009) and Justice Malan of the Johannesburg High Court (Taylor v. Kurtstag NO, [2004] 4 All SA 317 (W)). The Dutch cabinet also made use of Gerhard's research in drafting its response to the 2010 report by the State Commission on the Constitution.


Principal publications

  • Judicial review of legislation: A comparative study of the United Kingdom, the Netherlands and South Africa (Dordrecht: Springer, 2010), 233 pages
  • Limitation of rights: A study of the European Convention and the South African Bill of Rights, Nijmegen (The Netherlands), Wolf Legal Publishers, 2005, 369 pages
  • "Constitutional review by the judiciary in the Netherlands: A bridge too far?", 11 German Law Journal 2010, 275-290
  • "Waarom het wetsvoorstel Halsema tekort schiet: Mythes rondom het verdragsargument", Nederlands Juristenblad 2009, 2408-2414
  • (with S. Sottiaux) "Methods of international human rights adjudication: Towards a more structured decision-making process for the European Court of Human Rights", 31 Hastings International and Comprative Law Journal 2008, 115-156

Click here for the list of publications in the Research Portal

Last amended: 12 May 2016