Susan Ann Samuel

Susan Ann Samuel


Susan is a PhD Student with the School of Politics and International Studies, University of Leeds, focusing on Human Rights, Climate Politics and Sustainable development. 

She is an Indian lawyer with experiences of litigation, policy research, legal analysis and court work. She has previously worked in the District/Sessions Court, Thiruvananthapuram for nearly a year before travelling to the UK to do LLM in International Law with University of Edinburgh (2020-2021). Further, she worked as a legal intern with OHCHR (Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights) in Cambodia, and UNOV/UNODC (United Nations Office in Vienna - UN Office on Drugs and Crimes) in Vienna. Her debut book - UNSEEN YET SEEN was published in May 2018.

Susan actively pursues academic and field expertise in human rights advocacy with a focus on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, Climate Politics and Sustainable Development with local, national and international organisations, as well as the third sector - with skills in policy research, legal analysis and project management.

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Research interests

Susan’s research interests include Climate Politics, International Human Rights, Sustainable Development and international norm dynamics. She is working on the Project – Towards A New International Normative Framework in Response to the Climate Crisis (Link) with Dr. Viktoria Spaiser, Prof. Richard Beardsworth, Dr. Cristina Stefan and Dr. Nicole Nisbett; focusing on international normative change in response to climate crisis. 

During her Masters, for the dissertation, she focused on the topic 'Women’s Role in Climate Change Law: Exploring the Boundaries of International Environmental Law (Critical Analysis on Climate Litigation and Legislation in Global South)'; this was done through a comparative study of Global North and South taking the nations USA and India as case studies in climate litigation and legislation patterns, further analysing on the three fold activism – to streets, Courts and Parliament in Global South.  

She was a speaker at IUCN WCEL Oslo Conference (3- 6th October, 2022). She spoke on 'Re-imagining the Legal Vision of Environmental Rule of Law through Sarvodaya' by bringing the Indian political and economic values of Sarvodaya (Mahatma Gandhi’s vision of welfare) arguing how a narrative of human rights in climate governance can bring international solidarity for climate emergency. This was done by specifically taking a few examples of environmental movements in India that followed Gandhian principle of civil disobedience and Sarvodaya in bringing transformative legal change in local, national and international levels which constituted the evolution of environmental jurisprudence in India, also informing best practices across the globe. She is an Associate Fellow at Center for International Sustainable Development Law (CISDL) where she researches on Climate Change, Human Rights, Biodiversity Law and Sustainable Development. On 10th December 2022, for the event of Biodiversity Law and Governance Day 2022 during CBD COP15 in Montreal, she was a speaker at Experts Roundtable: Genetic Information and Access and Benefit Sharing in the Nagoya Protocol,  speaking on “A Pact of Peace with Nature: Legal Nexus between Human Rights and Nagoya Protocol”. 

Professional memberships:

  • Bar Council of Kerala, India
  • International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Commission for Environmental Law (WCEL)
  • IUCN Comission on Environmental Economic and Social Policy (CEESP)
  • Centre for International Sustainable Development Law (CISDL)
  • Global Network on Human Rights and Environment (GNHRE) 
  • European Society of International Law (ESIL)


  • Master of Laws (LL.M International Law) - University of Edinburgh
  • Bachelor of Laws (BA LL.B 5 year integrated course) - Government Law College, Thiruvananthapuram.