Paolo Galizzi

Clinical Professor of Law; Director, Sustainable Development Legal Initiative

FLS Paolo Galizzi

SSRN (academic papers)
[email protected]
Office: Room 7-126

Faculty Assistant: Emma Mercer, [email protected]

Areas of Expertise: Human Rights, International Environmental Law, International Law

  • Paolo Galizzi is a Clinical Professor of Law and Director of the Sustainable Development Legal Initiative (SDLI) and the Corporate and Social Responsibility Program at the Leitner Center for International Law and Justice at Fordham Law School. He teaches and researches in the areas of international law, sustainable development, corporate and social responsibility, human rights and climate change law and policy.

    Prof. Galizzi has had a distinguished academic career spanning three continents and almost three decades. After graduating in 1993 summa cum laude at the University of Milan, he continued his legal education at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, where he obtained an LLM in Public International Law in 1995. He then returned to his alma mater, the University of Milan, to pursue research for his doctoral degree, which he obtained in 1998 with a thesis on “Compliance with International Environmental Obligations”.

    Prof. Galizzi began his academic career at the University of Milan and at the University of Verona in Italy. He later worked as Fellow at the British Institute of International and Comparative Law (BIICL) in London, before joining the School of Law at the University of Nottingham and moving to Imperial College London. Whilst at Imperial College London, Prof. Galizzi was awarded a prestigious Fellowship by the European Union (Marie Curie Fellowship) to pursue academic research in the United States on climate change law and policy and initially joined Fordham as a Visiting Professor (Marie Curie Fellow) in 2004. At the end of his visit, in 2008 Prof. Galizzi was offered a full-time position at Fordham Law School as an Associate Clinical Professor of Law and was later promoted to Clinical Professor of Law in 2012.

    Since joining Fordham, Prof. Galizzi has founded and directed the Sustainable Development Legal Initiative (SDLI) and later, thanks to a generous donation of PVH Corporation, the Corporate and Social Responsibly Program (CSR) within the Leitner Center for International Law and Justice. He also directed Fordham’s Summer in South Korea and continues to direct Fordham’s Summer Program in Ghana.

    For the past twenty years, Prof. Galizzi has worked in Africa and particularly in Ghana, where he has also held various academic positions (Visiting Professor of Law at the School of Law, GIMPA, Accra from 2015-2018; Founding Director of the African Center for International Criminal Law and Justice – ACICJ - and Founding Director of the African Center on Legal Ethics – ACLE – hosted by GIMPA Law School from 2016 to the end of 2018). He is currently affiliated with the School of Law at the University of Professional Studies Accra (UPSA).

    Prof. Galizzi has been actively engaged in scholarship as well as in the practical application of international rules in areas as diverse as environmental law, climate change law and policy, development, and human rights. Over the years, he has worked on clinical projects with Ghanaian Law Schools and students on prisoners’ rights, customary law, access to justice and police reform. Prof. Galizzi has worked with stakeholders in the Ghanaian legal system to address issues on access to justice and critical legal reforms. In particular, he worked closely with his Ghanaian academic partners  with the Judicial Service, the Legal Aid Scheme, the Prison Service, the Police Service and the Attorney General  to promote capacity building, training and more generally the exchange of ideas between the United States and the Ghanaian legal profession. In 2015, the American Association of Ghanaian Lawyers (AGLA) recognized his work on legal education and the law in Ghana in an award ceremony.

    Prof. Galizzi worked with then Chief Justice Georgina T. Wood for over ten years during her tenure at the head of the Judicial Service of Ghana (2007-2017). He continued working with her successor, Chief Justice Sophia Akuffo on a court solarization program funded by the Australian High Commission in Accra.  In 2014-2015, he was appointed Legal Advisor to former President of Ghana John A. Kufuor in his capacity as UN Special Envoy on Climate Change. In this role, Prof. Galizzi worked with President Kufuor to coordinate the efforts to increase the effectiveness and participation of developing countries in the climate change regime. In 2014-2016, Prof. Galizzi worked as an Advisor to the Chairman of the Council of the Ghana Prison Service on prisoners’ rights and access to healthcare for prisoners.

    Prof. Galizzi’s work in Africa included setting up a Human Rights Moot Court Competition in East Africa (Great Lakes Human Rights Moot Court) with colleagues from the Faculty of Law of INES, Ruhengeri (Rwanda) and training of judges in East Africa in partnership with the Federal Judicial Center. His field work has included projects in Malawi as well as in South Africa. He has also conducted field work in Latin America and Eastern Europe during his career. In the past five years, Prof. Galizzi has also worked in partnership with White & Case and GIMPA Law School in Accra to train African law students on legal ethics issues. The last such training program took place in Kigali, Rwanda in July 2019 and saw the participation of over 70 law students from 10 African countries.

    Prof. Galizzi has collaborated and supported the work of several international agencies and organizations throughout his career. In particular, he has collaborated with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the Equator Initiative, the Red Ribbon Initiative, the Commission on the Legal Empowerment of the Poor and the UNPFA. He currently serves as the Co-Chair of TransformU within the UNFPA and sits on the Project Advisory Board of the Access to Laws/Regulations in Africa (IMF Anti-Corruption Innovation Competition).

    Prof. Galizzi has been a successful fundraiser for his initiatives and programs. Over the years, he raised over $ 1 million (partly in partnership with his Ghanaian academic partners) from diverse sources (the Leitner Center for International Law and Justice, GE Foundation, PVH, White & Case, the Dutch Embassy in Accra, the Australian High Commission in Accra and the European Union).

    Prof. Galizzi is a prolific writer. He has edited volumes on customary law in Africa and international environmental law; he contributed to chapters in academic volumes and has written numerous articles. His latest publications include: Chapter on Atmospheric Pollution, 2nd Edition of the Routledge Handbook of International Environmental Law, forthcoming 2020 [with Kerry Gillich]; an article on Corporate Social Responsibility, Business and Human Rights in the Twenty-First Century: An Overview, in Global Law. Legal Answers for Concrete Challenges, Eds Maria Lucia Mantovanini Padua Lima & Jose Garcez Ghirardi, Jurua Editorial, 2018 [with Kwaku Agyeman-Budu]; Regulatory strategies, CSR and resource protection, in Natural Resources Law, Investment and Sustainability (S. Alam, J. Hossain Bhuiyan & J. Razzaque, Eds., Routledge: 2017) [with Emily Smith Ewing]; Human Rights and Climate Change, in Encyclopedia of Environmental Law, 15 pp. (Edward Elgar, forthcoming 2016) [with Sheila Foster]; From Ignorance, to Indifference, to Limited Familiarity: An Analysis of the Relationship Between International Environmental Law & Multinational Corporations in La Responsabilita` Sociale d’Impresa (2014).


    • University of Milan, Laurea in Giurisprudenza (Equivalent to Juris Doctor), Magna Cum Laude
    • School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, LLM, 1995
    • University of Milan, PhD International Environmental Law, 1998
  • Selected Publications

    • From Ignorance, to Indifference, to Limited Familiarity: An Analysis of the Relationship Between International Environmental Law & Multinational Corporations in La Responsabilita` Sociale d’Impresa (2014)

Paolo Galizzi Press Highlights

Fordham’s Black Law Students Association Celebrates 50th Anniversary at Annual Ruth Whitehead Whaley Dinner

First-of-its-Kind Global Anti-Racism Clinic Launches at Fordham Law

Fordham Law Clinics “Meet the Moment” in New Video Series

Fordham Law Celebrates First Alumni Dinner in Ghana

‘Ukraine, Russia, War, and Law’: Fordham Law Experts Assess Crisis in Ukraine

Racism, Black Lives Matter, and the Implications for Africa

Environmental Law Review Symposium Examines Green New Deal

Fordham Law School, White & Case, and GIMPA Law School Join the African Centre on Law & Ethics to Hold Programs on Legal Ethics

Fordham Law School Wins Award for Ethics Program in Ghana

Fordham Law Partners with White & Case and GIMPA Law School to Launch African Centre on Law & Ethics

Safe to Drink?

Closing the Gap

Changing the Climate Conversation

White & Case, Fordham Law to Launch Legal Ethics Training Programme with GIMPA Law Faculty and Judicial Service of Ghana

Global Challenges, Local Solutions

Real Work Begins After Ambitious Climate Deal in Paris

Unstable Environment

Leitner Center and Professor Paolo Galizzi Honored for Work on Rule of Law in Ghana