Human Rights Law Centre

Our People

The Human Rights Law Centre (HRLC) has a dedicated staff as well as a diverse and dynamic membership, providing a home for leaders in the field of human rights law.



Aoife Nolan

Co-Director and Professor of International Human Rights Law

Professor Nolan’s professional experience in human rights and constitutional law straddles the legal, policy, practitioner and academic fields. She is Vice-President of the Council of Europe's European Committee of Social Rights, Europe’s leading monitoring body on economic and social rights which she joined in 2017.

She has published extensively in the areas of human rights and constitutional law, particularly in relation to children's rights and economic and social rights. She currently leads a major three-year international research project on ‘Advancing Child Rights Strategic Litigation’. Professor Nolan has acted as an expert advisor to a wide range of international and national organisations and bodies working on human rights issues, including numerous UN Special Procedures, UN treaty bodies, the Council of Europe, multiple NHRIs and NGOs.

She has held visiting positions at academic institutions in Europe, Africa, the US and Australia. She is an Academic Expert member at Doughty Street Chambers where she co-leads the Children’s Rights Group.


Sangeeta Shah

Co-Director and Professor of International Law & Human Rights

Sangeeta Shah joined the University of Nottingham in 2003 as a Research Fellow in the Human Rights Law Centre, and took up the co-Directorship in 2022. Professor Shah researches across a wide range of human rights issues, both domestic and international. Her current focus is the work of the UN Human Rights Council and the insights this can provide on state’s perceptions of human rights. She is co-editor of the leading textbook, International Human Rights Law (OUP, 2022) which is now in its fourth edition.  

She has been a visiting scholar at UNSW Law (Sydney), School of Law, University of Canterbury (Christchurch) and the Max Planck Institute for International and Comparative Law (Heidelberg) and has been a visiting lecturer at the Faculty of Law, University of Lisbon. She also sits on the editorial boards of the Modern Law Review and the Human Rights Law Review.

Research and academic staff


Zinat Jimada

Research and Projects Assistant 

Zinat joined the HRLC as a Research and Projects Assistant in January 2022. She completed the BCL at the University of Oxford in 2021 and holds two bachelor's degrees, in Law and Psychology, from Queen Mary University of London and the University of Ghana, respectively.

Zinat has worked for Rights and Security International conducting human rights analyses of conditions in detention camps in northeast Syria. She also worked at REDRESS where she contributed to projects on the prohibition of torture as a Fellow of the Bonavero Institute of Human Rights. She has broad interests in public international law, human rights and constitutional law.


Thomas Welch

Research and Projects Assistant 

Tom joined the Human Rights Law Centre as a Research and Projects Assistant in March 2022. He holds an LLB in Law and Criminology from the University of Lincoln and an MA in Applied Human Rights from the University of York.

Prior to joining the HRLC team, Tom worked as Programme Coordinator at The Access Project and as a Teaching Associate at the University of Lincoln Law School, where he taught Public Law on the undergraduate degree programme. He maintains a broad interest in human rights law, international public law, and penological theory. 


Laura Wills-2

Laura Wills

Research Associate

Laura Wills joined the Human Rights Law Centre in March 2014. Laura holds an LLB, LPC and an LLM in Human Rights Law.

Within her current role Laura conducts research under the Centre’s FRANET contract, assists with the design and implementation of the Centre’s bespoke training and capacity building programmes, is the Assistant Editor of the International Human Rights Reports and module convenor of the International Refugee Law module on HRLC's Distance Learning Course.

Laura is also the Director of HRLC's Refugee Clinic having co-founded the Clinic in January 2020. She oversee's the Clinic's casework and research and supervises the team of Student Caseworkers.



Human Rights Law Centre

School of Law
University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

+44 (0)115 846 8506