Dr Brooke Marshall, Lindemann Foundation scholar, in conversation

September 19, 2022

A Senior Lecturer at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Brooke Marshall researches and teaches in the areas of private law, private international law, and comparative law. Before joining the University of New South Wales, she was a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute.

What is your research focus during your time as a Lindemann Scholar?

My research as a Lindemann Scholar concerns the intersection between refugee law and private international law. Although these two areas interact in multiple ways, I am beginning my investigation of the topic by looking at the law governing what is known as “personal status” under the Geneva Refugee Convention; a multilateral agreement among nearly 150 countries. The project asks which law will determine, say, whether a Ukrainian refugee in Australia, Germany, or France is legally the parent of a minor whom they assert is their child. It examines the extent to which this private international law aspect of the Convention is reflected in the law and practice of some of the countries that are party to it.

What made you visit the Institute this time?

It is the most incredibly well-resourced institute for all things comparative, private, and private international law. I am especially interested in being able to consult some of the older and more recent German language texts on the topic, such as “Der Flüchtling im deutschen internationalen Privatrecht” from 1995 and “Flucht und Migration im internationalen Familienrecht” from 2020, which are not available to me in Sydney. Being able to discuss research ideas with other scholars directly working in private international law and participating in the academic discussions of the Institute’s “Conflicts Club” has been extremely fruitful and a great pleasure.

How would you describe the Institute to someone who has never been here?

A researcher’s nirvana! Having had the privilege of writing my doctoral thesis here, I am intimately familiar with the Institute’s ever-expanding Library collection, which is truly second to none. Institute staff are warm and welcoming and the setting of the Institute itself makes it the perfect place to squirrel yourself away to think and write. The Institute’s library encircles a garden courtyard and is a stone’s throw from a tributary of the Elbe River called the “Außenalster”, which is breathtaking at all times of the year.

Image: © Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law / Johanna Detering

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