Visiting Doctoral Researchers

Visiting Doctoral Researchers are doctoral candidates enrolled in a doctoral degree program at another institution abroad who wish to benefit from spending one year of their research at NYU School of Law. They will be fully integrated into the JSD program as far as is relevant. The JSD Program invites approximately six to eight individuals each academic year to contribute to the Visiting Doctoral Researcher position in the JSD Program.

The Visiting Doctoral Researchers are actively integrated into the Law School community through various academic and social programs, including an invitation to participate in the JSD Forum where they may present their research.

Benefits of Participation
Participating in the Visiting Doctoral Researcher program will include the following benefits:

  1. Participation in all Law School events including those especially of the JSD Program
  2. Integration, as far as possible, into the activities and events of NYU School of Law's JSD program
  3. Workspace within the Law School. Please note that work space is not guaranteed; however, we will do our best to provide some work space if any is available to us
  4. Access to the NYU School of Law Library, including WestLaw and LEXIS
  5. An email account

The invitation to join the Law School as a Visiting Doctoral Researcher is also an invitation to a life-long relationship with the JSD Program at NYU School of Law, one that will continue to foster excellence in legal scholarship. If you are interested in applying, please view the program information and application instructions links.


Current Visiting Doctoral Researchers

Academic Year 2015-2016


Peter Dunne
Visiting Doctoral Researcher

Peter Dunne is a second year PhD student at the school of law, Trinity College Dublin, and a Trinity Ussher Fellow (2014-2017). Peter holds an LL.M degree from Harvard Law School, where he was an Irving R Kaufman Fellow, and an LL.M from the University of Cambridge. He completed his primary legal training at University College Dublin, receiving the inaugural Undergraduate of Ireland Award, and the University of Paris 2 (Pantheon-Assas).

Peter’s scholarship focuses of human rights, family law and public law. He has a particular interest in the relationship between law, sexual orientation and gender identity. Peter has previously written on topics such as civil partnership, LGBT asylum claims and the legal recognition of transgender parenting. His scholarship has been published in journals, such as the European Law Review, Public Law, Medical Law Review and the European Human Rights Law Review. Peter’s doctoral research considers human rights approaches to the legal recognition of preferred gender.

Before commencing his doctoral studies, Peter worked as a Harvard Law Fellow at the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) in New York City. In this role, Peter engaged in human rights documentation and sexuality-based advocacy before the United Nations Human Rights Treaty Bodies. In 2013, Peter was selected as an Arthur C Helton Fellow of the American Society of International Law, and worked as a national and international law advisor to Transgender Equality Network Ireland (TENI). Peter has previously been awarded the Pride Law Fund and Equal Justice America Fellowships to work at the Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders (GLAD) in Boston.

Peter has volunteered as a human rights law advisor to Transgender and Intersex Luxembourg, and as a student advocate with the Massachusetts Transgender Legal Advocates (MTLA). In 2015, as a Trinity Equality Fund grantee, he co-organised Ireland’s first ever Trans Youth Forum. From 2012 to 2013, Peter trained at the Court of Justice of the European Union in Luxembourg. He has also worked at the Financial Services Ombudsman Bureau of Ireland. Peter currently serves as a member of the TENI Board of Directors.



Ahmed Elsayed
Visiting Doctoral Researcher

Ahmed Elsayed is a PhD fellow in Law at the University of Copenhagen, working under the supervision of Professor Antoni Ninet. He read his LL.M. in human rights at SOAS, University of London and holds an LL.B. degree from Cairo University. The title of his Ph.D. research is “Understanding Egyptian Constitutionalism: swinging between absolutism and institutional authoritarianism,” in which he is seeking to historically and ideologically contextualize Egyptian constitutionalism since its emergence and until the 2014 Constitution.

Ahmed’s interests include politics in the Middle East, constitutionalism, judicial politics, Islamic Law and Public International Law. Prior to joining the VDR program, Ahmed taught PIL at University of Copenhagen, received the Chevening award for the academic year 2008-09 and the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship (2012-13). In addition, Ahmed worked as a district attorney at both Egyptian criminal and family prosecutions and currently he is a judge on a leave of absence.



Senthorun Raj
Visiting Doctoral Researcher

Senthorun Raj is an academic and advocate with a passion for popular culture, social justice, and law. Sen is completing his PhD and teaches at the Sydney Law School. His doctoral thesis titled “Feeling Law: Intimacy, Violence, and Queer Subjects” examines the way emotion has shaped legal responses that address the discrimination perpetrated against sexual and gender minorities.  He is currently working on completing the final parts of his dissertation as a Visiting Doctoral Researcher at NYU Law School.

Sen is a contributing writer for The Guardian. He has published numerous articles and academic papers on topics ranging from refugee law to social networking.  Sen is also an advisory board member of the sexuality, gender and diversity studies journal Writing from Below and has been a guest editor at the lifestyle website SameSame.

Sen is a former Churchill Fellow who completed a comparative research project on the advocacy and adjudication of sexual orientation and gender identity based asylum claims in USA, UK, and Australia. He previously worked as the Senior Policy Advisor for the NSW Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby. In a governance capacity, Sen has also served on the boards of Amnesty International Australia and ACON Health.