Stephen Gardbaum


Professor of Law

Home Department: Professor of Law

Areas of Interest

Comparative constitutional law, Constitutional theory, Federalism.




Stephen Gardbaum is the MacArthur Foundation Professor of International Justice and Human Rights.  He was a Guggenheim Fellow in 2011-12 and a Straus Fellow at New York University in 2012-13.  An internationally recognized constitutional scholar, Gardbaum received a B.A. with First Class Honors from Oxford University, an M.Sc. from London University, a Ph.D. in Political Theory from Columbia, and a J.D. from Yale Law School.  He is a solicitor of the Supreme Court of England and Wales, and teaches constitutional law, comparative constitutional law, international human rights, European Union law, and comparative law. Professor Gardbaum’s scholarship focuses on comparative constitutional law, constitutional theory, and federalism.  His book The New Commonwealth Model of Constitutionalism (Cambridge University Press, 2013) develops the theory and explores the practice of a novel form of human rights protection in Canada, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom.  He was the keynote speaker at the 2009 Protecting Human Rights Conference in Australia, part of the major debate in that country about adopting this new model through a national human rights act.  A book-length collection of his articles on the comparative structure of constitutional rights was recently translated into Spanish and published by the European Research Center of Comparative Law. Professor Gardbaum’s numerous articles have appeared, among other places, in the Harvard Law Review, Stanford Law Review, Michigan Law Review, University of Chicago Law Review and the American Journal of Comparative Law.  His recent publications include “The Place of Constitutional Law in the Legal System,” in Michel Rosenfeld and András Sajó, eds., The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Constitutional Law, Oxford University Press (2012); “How Successful and Distinctive is the Human Rights Act?  An Expatriate Comparatist’s Assessment,”Modern Law Review (2011); “A Democratic Defense of Constitutional Balancing,”Law & Ethics of Human Rights (2010); “Reassessing the New Commonwealth Model of Constitutionalism,” International Journal of Constitutional Law (2010); and “Human Rights and International Constitutionalism,” in Jeff Dunoff and Joel Trachtman, eds., Ruling the World? Constitutionalism, International Law and Global Government, Cambridge University Press (2009).  His scholarship has been cited by the U.S. and Canadian Supreme Courts, and widely translated.

Selected Research

1. The New Commonwealth Model of Constitutionalism: Theory and Practice. Cambridge University Press (2013).

2. Human Rights and International Constitutionalism, in Ruling the World? Constitutionalism, International Law and Global Government (edited by Jeff Dunoff and Joel Trachtman, Cambridge University Press, 2009).

3.  Separation of Powers and the Growth of Judicial Review in Established Democracies (or Why has the Model of Legislative Supremacy Mostly Been Withdrawn from Sale?), 62(3) American Journal of Comparative Law (forthcoming, 2014). (Full Text)