Page tree

Get started by adding some pages to this space. Create page.

Skip to end of metadata
Go to start of metadata

Name: Stefanos Xenofontos

PhD: Human Rights and International Law

Thesis Title: "The constitutionalisation of international law and the evolving nature of the ECtHR: Towards a European Constitutional Court for human rights?"


Thesis Description:

My research project focuses on European human rights law and, in particular, the work of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), from an international and constitutional law perspective, seeking solutions to make the entire European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) system more effective. The thesis intends to make a clear link between the constitutionalisation process and the current challenges of the Convention system. The central research question that the thesis seeks to examine is whether the evolution of the ECtHR into a European Constitutional Court is the only definite and viable solution that can effectively tackle the ongoing challenges of the Convention system and ensure the future stability and integrity of the entire European human rights project.

Essentially, this research project purports to go beyond the short-term reform proposals presented in the recent Brighton Declaration, which was followed by a series of conferences among the Convention member states, and propose that the constitutionalisation of the Court is the only effective method capable of securing its long-term future. However, this  raises questions of legitimacy, and may fuel states’ allegations of illegitimate self-aggrandisement and trespass on domestic legal systems by the Court.  The main aspect that will be examined through the thesis will thus be whether moving away from the current dual functionality of the ECtHR (constitutional and adjudicatory body) and concentrating on the constitutionalist function of the Court can provide a permanent and viable solution to the issue of case overload (e.g. 40650 applications in 2015), enhance uniform implementation of the Convention rights across all member states and ensure prompt and effective enforcement of Court judgments.


Supervisors and Institution(s): 

Professor Fiona de Londras (University of Birmingham)

Dr Natasa Mavronicola (University of Birmingham)


Publications (please include full details with page nos. or web links):


  • Stefanos Xenofontos, 'The criteria for using electronic surveillance and anti-terrorism laws: Are the national law provisions accessible, precise, foreseeable and include clear legislative norms in the context of surveillance and anti-terrorism provisions?' in ELSA International (ed), Report on Freedom of Expression and the Protection of Journalistic Sources (Council of Europe 2016) (August 2016), available at: <>



Academic Biography:

  • Law with a Year Abroad (LLB Hons), University of Leicester, UK, 2011 – 2015
  • French Legal Studies (Erasmus), University of Strasbourg, France, 2013-2014
  • Public International Law LLM (Distinction), University of Leicester, UK, 2015-2016
  • Midlands3Cities DTP funded PhD Researcher, University of Birmingham, 2017 -  present


Scholarly / Public Engagement Activities / Seminars & Conferences:

  • Participation at the International Conference on "International Judicial Dialogue in the Protection of Fundamental Rights”, organised by the University of Salamanca, Spain, in collaboration with the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law during 27-28 November 2017. Conference info:


Other Research Interests:

  • International and Comparative Human Rights Law
  • Public International Law
  • Constitutional Law
  • International Legal Theory




University email address:

Birmingham Law School profile:



  • No labels