GroningenFaculty of law, University of Groningen

General Information

Ever since its establishment in 1614 the University of Groningen has been educating people to serve society. All this knowledge and experience has stimulated the University to become what it is now: a modern, international university where work is being carried out at the frontiers of knowledge. It is a university with its own character. This is partly due to its geographical situation in the north of the country. The University is bold enough to be different: sober, but inventive; reliable, but surprising; solid, but prepared to accept challenges. The University of Groningen not only admitted the first-ever female student in the country but also produced the first Dutch space traveller: pioneering is a trait that is fundamental to this university. The University of Groningen is a classical university that knows the challenges of the future.

The Faculty of Law of the University of Groningen is a modern, internationally oriented institution that has existed for nearly four centuries. Since it has the ambition to measure itself with the best law faculties in Europe, advanced systems of quality control have been implemented to continuously improve the Faculty’s research and education. And although the Faculty has grown to become one of the largest law faculties in the Netherlands, it has kept its friendly and informal atmosphere and its concern for good relations amongst its staff, students and alumni.

Groningen, an old but modern city of about 190,000 inhabitants, is the cultural, commercial and business capital of the province of the same name in the north of the Netherlands. It was founded over 950 years ago and is a centre of trade and transport, culture, education and science. It has two large hospitals, several theatres and museums, bookshops specialized in all European languages, and art galleries. Its industry includes sugar, tobacco and coffee factories, and the printing of schoolbooks.

Groningen is a University city; the presence of the University staff and students can be felt in all aspects of city life. But it is not only the University that leaves its mark. Other educational facilities, vocational training, art academy, etc. also give the city a very special and particularly youthful character. Over 50% of the inhabitants is under 35!


The Faculty of Law in Groningen offers the following English-taught programmes:

Bachelor programme:

This unique bachelor’s programme provides you with thorough knowledge of both public international law and European law. You will study law from a conceptual point of view, where no national law system is taken as a basis. The concepts in each field of law that build all law systems in the world are discussed to give you a solid basis in the legal way of thinking and legal structures. On top of that, all factors influencing both European law and public international law, like international relations, economics, decision-making structures, will be studied. A truly international law programme with unique features and a highly international population.


Master programmes:

Today, the energy sector is rapidly changing as a result of market liberalization and climate change concerns. The EU presents a typical example of this scenario but similar developments can also be found in other parts of the world. This specialized programme will present the main principles of energy market liberalization and how climate law affects the energy sector, with the EU often used as a case example. Core courses: Energy Law and Policy, Climate Law, Energy Contracting, Energy Market Law, Energy Investment and Trade Law.

The European Market Law program covers the central aspects of European Market Law, meaning that students learn about the many different types of law, including institutional law, labour law, tax law, and the European protection of human rights. Core courses: European Internal Market Law, Market Regulation, Seminar European Market Law, Competition Law, Constitutional Principles of the EU Market, EU Trade Law.

The Global Criminal Law LLM explores the application of criminal law - both substantive and procedural - in the context of global criminality, such as organized, transnational, and international criminality. This programme offers you the two-fold opportunity to study substantive and procedural criminal law from a comparative and international perspective but also to specialise in the study of specific criminal behaviour, such as organised and financial crimes, cybercrimes, and international crimes. Core courses: Comparative Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure and Human Rights, Organised and Financial Crime, Cyber crime and Cybersecurity, International Criminal Tribunals and Courts, International Crimes

Increasing globalization and regional integration creates the need for good knowledge of international commercial law. This knowledge is especially important if you wish to enter a career in the field of international private law and when you are planning of becoming a lawyer working in internationally operating private firms or law firms. This LLM programme covers specialization in (international) commercial law, especially with regard to contracts and subjects of contracts, and also looks at the solving of (commercial) disputes when needed. Core courses: International Contracts Law, Comparative Property Law, International Commercial Dispute Settlement Law, Comparative Private International Law, Seminar Contracts Law, Comparative Tort Law, Cross-border Commercial Transactions

Human rights are of all times and places, they are just not recognized everywhere, nor interpreted the same in all countries. There are several human rights systems in place and, in some cases, it can leave victims and their lawyers in a situation where they have to choose which forum to go to or which system to choose to seek their justice. In this programme, you will be trained in human rights at the international level, but also in international humanitarian law and other related fields of (international) law. You will learn about the different systems and how human rights are interpreted within these systems and in different countries. Core courses: International Human Rights Law, International Institutional Law, International Health Law, International Criminal Tribunals and Courts.

Imagine a peaceful, prosperous and environmentally sustainable world society where human dignity and social justice were widely respected. Would this be possible without international law? Allow yourself to become a good international lawyer by getting to know the achievements and shortcomings or international law today, and develop ideas about how to improve international law by acquiring the skills to advise your government, an international organization, a company, individuals, or groups. This LLM programme is designed to provide an optimal mix of learning to ensure the realization of our goals in the field of knowledge dissemination and the training of academic, legal, and practical skills. Within these parameters the programme offers some flexibility in the range of courses that can be chosen, and students can opt for a peace & security, an economic/environmental, or a dispute settlement focus. Core courses: International Human Rights Law, International Institutional Law, UN Peacekeeping and Peace Enforcement, Settlement of International Disputes, Advanced International Law, International Law in Practice.







Attending an LL.M. Programme at RuG has been a very rewarding choice indeed. The list of courses offered is broad enough to cover one’s academic interests and their content fully corresponds to the legal practitioner’s professional needs. The number of attendants per class is kept to such limits so as to facilitate learning and interaction in class. Professors are highly qualified and thus provide students with the most updated developments systematically, yet simultaneously leaving room for discussion.

Additionally, the people forming RuG’s administrative staff are always there for the student, either by everyday contact for practical matters or by organizing events that encourage a student’s integration in the social and political life of the University, the city of Groningen and the Netherlands as a whole. Thanks to them, I felt particularly at home.

The educational facilities are exceptional, thanks to the vast number of books and periodicals forming the catalogue of the University’s Library.

Compact in size, with a vast population of Dutch and international students, Groningen is definitely an ideal city for students itself.

It is for all these reasons that I returned to Groningen after 5 years of my first stay there as an Erasmus student in 2001.

Eleftheria Gerontidi, Greece

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