Padideh Ala’i
Padideh Ala’i

Message from the Director


Unity in diversity is the philosophical approach we take toward international law and the world view that we strive to convey to the next generation of international lawyers. We believe that it is the diversity of our student body and faculty and their perspectives that is our source of strength as we all work together to identify, promote, and protect common values and core principles that secure our peaceful co-existence under international law. It is my great honor to lead the renowned international and comparative legal studies programs at American University Washington College of Law (AUWCL). International and comparative law has long been central to the educational mandate of AUWCL, and our cutting-edge international program has been consistently ranked among some of the most elite and prestigious programs in the United States.

For over 20 years, AUWCL has grown its international offerings to include 19 programs, over 30 semester exchanges, and six dual degree programs. We continue our strength with strategic hires of international law scholars and practitioners – most recently, Susan Franck, a renowned expert in international arbitration, and Rebecca Hamilton, a recognized expert in national security law. We are delighted that Dean Emeritus Claudio Grossman’s dedication to international law remains a vital part of our institution, and that he has returned full-time to our faculty, where he can continue his important work, particularly given his recent election to the International Law Commission (ILC).

Our international programs continue to benefit from the unique global outlook of Dean Camille Nelson. We are embarking on the next stage of expanding, consolidating, and deepening our international programs and building new initiatives in areas such as international economic law, transnational business law, labor migration, and global regulatory cooperation, and exploring new partnerships with law schools around the world.

I am proud to be a part of a vibrant and renowned international and comparative law faculty committed to making a positive impact in the world for decades to come.


Padideh Ala’i - Director, International and Comparative Legal Studies