Tilburg Young Academy

Philip Paiement

An Associate Professor in Jurisprudence at Tilburg Law School.

Can you introduce yourself?

My name is Phillip Paiement, and I am an Associate Professor in Jurisprudence at Tilburg Law School. I am originally from the United States (Minnesota), but I have been living in the Netherlands on and off since 2006 when I first moved here to study. I conduct research in the field of transnational law and governance with a particular focus on sustainability. In January 2022 I was awarded an ERC Starting Grant for my project ‘TransLitigate’ which aims to explain the development of collaborative relationships between strategic litigators working on environmental law in different national contexts.

 Outside of work, I became a father in 2021 to an energetic and happy daughter, Nina. My wife and I enjoy spending lots of time outdoors on the weekends, hiking and biking with Nina through forests and meadows. I have been a long-distance runner since my teenage years and have been running ultramarathons – preferably in the mountains – for the past decade. I also enjoy tasting natural wines and sour beers.

Young Academy

Research and education are two important pillars of academia. What do they mean to you?

Since completing my PhD, I have been very involved in teaching at Tilburg Law School, particularly in developing curriculum and teaching in the relatively new Global Law Bachelor. This has been a very meaningful part of my work, in my experience. Although it can be exhausting and time consuming, I find that teaching ultimately generates a lot of enthusiasm and energy in me and in my work, including my research. My school and university experiences were marked by very remarkable and considerate teachers, and I always esteem to offer my students the same high-quality and thoughtful instruction in their own education. For me, education is ultimately aimed at helping my students in their individual intellectual and analytic development, and I try to keep this in mind while developing and teaching my courses.

The second pillar, research, in my mind should be considered as closely related to education. My own research arises primarily out of an interest in facets of globalization which transcend foundational dichotomies in law, in particular the distinctions between private power and public authority, and between international and national law. In many ways, the initial questions that guide my research map very well onto the justifications for the development of new forms of legal education that are more suitable for legal practice amid globalization, such as the Global Law Bachelor in Tilburg.     

I am sure you all have topics that are important to you. What is your main focus in the TYA?

Before I really set myself to a priority project within the TYA, I first look forward to learning more about the other members and work accomplished in the past year. However, my first priorities tend to revolve around experimenting with organizational formats within TiU that would help identify and reduce exploitation problems in our university, both in terms of undervaluing the labor of our colleagues, students, and other laborers who work on our campus, as well as the exploitation of natural resources and the more-than-human community that makes our academic lives at TiU possible. In this vein, I would like to explore the possibility of TiU becoming a pilot zoöp, a model of organizational governance for translating the interests of non-human life into the decision making of an organization, which has recently been developed by Het Nieuwe Instituut.