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Violeta Moreno-Lax

Violeta Moreno-Lax

Queen Mary University London


Dr Violeta Moreno-Lax is Full Professor of Law (on special leave) at Queen Mary University of London, specialising in international and EU law at the intersection with migration, border violence, and security. She is the founder of Queen Mary’s Immigration Law programme and inaugural director of its Centre for the Legal Study of Borders and Migration: (B)OrderS. At Queen Mary, she has also co-founded and served as inaugural co-director of the Centre for European and International Legal Affairs (2014-18) and as PI and coordinator of the SAROBMED: The Search and Rescue Observatory for the Mediterranean, a multi-disciplinary, multi-stakeholder, award-winning consortium documenting and analysing human rights violations at sea occurring during interdiction/rescue operations.  

Professor Moreno-Lax currently holds a prestigious Ramóm y Cajal Senior Research Fellowship at the University of Barcelona. Since 2017, she has been Visiting Professor at the College of Europe, where she teaches a course on the EU’s Area of Freedom, Security and Justice: Internal and External Aspects. She also serves as Co-Chair of The European Law Observatory; as a member of the Advisory Board of Equal Rights Beyond Borders; as a member of the Steering Committee of the Migration and Law Network; and has been Senior Research Associate of the Refugee Law Initiative of the University of London since 2018. As an internationally recognised expert in EU and international refugee and migration law, she regularly consults for the EU institutions and other organisations worldwide. 

Previously, Professor Moreno-Lax has held academic appointments at the Universities of Oxford, Liverpool and Louvain, and research fellowships at the European University Institute (Fernand Braudel Senior Research Fellowship, 2021), the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law (Senior Research Grantee, 2018), and The Hague Academy of International Law (Centre for Studies and Research, 2010). She has held visiting positions at the Universities of Ghent: European Law Institute (2019), Macquarie Law School (2017), New South Wales: Kaldor Centre for International Refugee Law (2017), Oxford: Refugee Studies Centre (2010-12), and Nijmegen: Centre for Migration Law (2009-10). She has published widely in the areas of international and European refugee and migration law, including her monograph: Accessing Asylum Europe: Extraterritorial Border Controls and Refugee Rights Under EU Law (Oxford University Press, 2017). For further details on her publications, please, consult her Academia page


Selected publications

  • Moreno-Lax, Violeta; Ziegler, Katja S

    2022.“Autonomy” of the EU Legal Order - A General Principle? On the Risks of Normative Functionalism and Selective Constitutionalisation.In:

    K.S. Ziegler, P.J. Neuvonen and V. Moreno-Lax (eds)

    General Principles in EU Law: Constructing Legal Orders in Europe.Edward Elgar,pp: 36.
  • Moreno-Lax, Violeta.2022.The Informalisation of the External Dimension: The Hard Implications of Soft Law.In:

    L. Tsourdi and P. De Bruycker (eds)

    Research Handbook on EU Immigration and Asylum Law.Edward Elgar (forthcoming).
  • Ziegler, Katja S.; Neuvonen, Päivi J.; Moreno-Lax, Violeta (eds)

    2022.Research Handbook on General Principles in EU Law: Constructing Legal Orders in Europe.Edward Elgar.
  • Moreno-Lax, Violeta.2021.Mutual (Dis-)Trust in EU Migration and Asylum Law: The Exceptionalisation of Fundamental Rights’.In:

    M. González Pascual and S. Iglesias Sánchez (eds)

    Fundamental Rights in the EU Area of Freedom, Security and Justice.Cambridge:CUP,pp: 77-99.
  • Moreno-Lax, Violeta.2021.Protection at Sea and the Denial of Asylum.In:

    C. Costello, M. Foster, and J. McAdam (eds)

    The Oxford Handbook of International Refugee Law.Oxford:OUP,pp: 483-501.
  • Mitsilegas, Valsamis; Moreno-Lax, Violeta; Vavoula, Niovi (eds)

    2020.Securitising Asylum Flows: Deflection, Criminalisation and Challenges for Human Rights.Leiden/Boston:Brill.
  • Moreno-Lax, Violeta.2017.Accessing Asylum in Europe: Extraterritorial Border Controls and Refugee Rights under EU Law.Oxford:Oxford University Press.
  • Peers, Steeve; Moreno-Lax, Violeta; Garlick, Madeline; Guild, Elspeth

    2015.EU Immigration and Asylum Law.2nd, Vol. 3 (Asylum). Leiden/Boston:Brill.