Hilal Elver

Resnick Center for Food Law and Policy Global Distinguished Fellow

  • J.D. University of Ankara Law School, 1974
  • Ph.D. in Law, University of Ankara, 1985
  • S.J.D. UCLA School of Law, 2009

Hilal Elver is a Global Distinguished Fellow at the Resnick Center for Food Law and Policy.

Since 2002, Elver has been a visiting professor at the University of California Santa Barbara, and the co-director of the Project on Climate Change, Human Security, and Democracy housed at the Orfalea Center. She started her teaching career at the University of Ankara Faculty of Law and taught there until 1993. During this period, she was also appointed by the Turkish government as the founding legal advisor of the Ministry of Environment, and later became the General Director of Women's Status in the Office of the Prime Minister. In 1994, she was appointed to the UNEP Chair in Environmental Diplomacy by the United Nations Environment Program at the Mediterranean Academy of Diplomatic Studies of the University of Malta. Since 1996 she has taught law school courses in Roman law, comparative law, public international law, international environmental law and international human rights law.

Elver has had fellowships and visiting professorships at several universities: University of Michigan Law School; Rutgers Law School (Newark), Princeton University; McGill University, Faculty of Law; Chapman Law School; and most recently Dickson Poon School of Law At King's College London. Her op-eds have been published in various media outlets, including The Guardian, Al Jazeera International and America.

Currently, she is a member of the Academic Council of the UN Least Developed Countries (2011-2021), and a member of the official delegation of the Turkey's UN Climate Change Framework Convention. In May 2014, she was appointed by the United Nations Human Rights Council as the Special Rapporteur on the Right to Food.

Elver is a 2009 graduate of the S.J.D. program at UCLA School of Law, and holds a J.D., as well as a Ph.D. in Law from the University of Ankara.  Elver is the author of three books, including The Headscarf Controversy: Secularism and Freedom of Religion (2012) and Peaceful Uses of International Rivers:  The Case of the Euphrates and Tigris River Basin (2002).  She has contributed to numerous other books as well, and has published a number of articles, including most recently “Racializing Islam before and after 9/11,” 21 Journal of Transnational Law and Contemporary Problems 119 (2012).