Towards a professional career

The LLM in Public International Law has a strong connection to practice, so it offers you an excellent introduction to the legal profession.  Moot courts, visits to legal and professional organisations and guest lecturers from the field provide a concrete vision of what it is like to work in public international law. With the ability to critically reflect on today’s driving legal issues – such as human and environmental rights –  you will be well-prepared for a legal career. Graduates from prior years have done well in a range of employment areas, including:

  • Corporate and private law practice
  • National public service as a diplomat or civil servant
  • International courts
  • Consultants for governments, international political organisations and NGOs
  • Academic or legal research

After finishing your studies, you can work as a:

  • Diplomat, lawyer, or policy officer in national government (for example, as a legal advisor in Foreign Affairs).
  • Teacher or researcher/PhD in the field of international public law.
  • Lawyer or policy officer in international government, NGOs, or businesses (for example, legal advisor at Greenpeace).
  • Attorney specialising in the area of international public law.

Alumni stories

Curious about the jobs our alumni got? Browse the LinkedIn profiles of some of our graduates in Public International Law.

Towards an academic career

On average, Utrecht University School of Law has 40 PhD students who are working under the supervision of a professor towards the title ‘Doctor of Law’. A PhD programme typically takes four years, during which you will produce and submit a thesis. We also encourage you to establish yourself as a researcher during this time by publishing articles related to your research and contributing to seminars and conferences. We have an international reputation for excellence in research and teaching and our academics are at the cutting edge of scholarship. If you wish to find out more about studying our 2-year LLM Master's programme Legal Research, or openings for paid PhD positions, please go to vacancies

Facts and figures

The Job Market Monitor indicates that many alumni from Utrecht University School of Law programmes find jobs immediately after graduating. An average of four months post-graduation, all of them have found employment. A small percentage go on to follow a PhD programme or other study after their Master. Many students come into contact with their future employer during their Master, i.e. during their internship, at a career fair, or by carrying out (thesis) research on behalf of an organisation or business. The Utrecht University Faculty of Law, Economics and Governance has strong links with practice.

Career preparation

The Master in Public International Law prepares you for tomorrow’s job market:

  • Students learn to adapt quickly to a new or renewed topic, and to quickly understand the development of rules and doctrines. This is a skill focused on what the professional workspace expects of graduates (in addition to readily available knowledge).
  • Students gain an empathetic understanding of real-life case studies and develop practical argumentation skills (especially through International Law Moot Court).
  • Through a pro bono clinic, students grant legal advice to a variety of institutions (Capital Selecta modules).
  • Students consider the complex and succinct legal issues that an internationally oriented lawyer will face in future advice or litigation practice.
  • Students organise career events in cooperation with relevant student associations like URIOS.

Also check the testimonials to get an impression of the jobs that other alumni of the LLM in Public International Law have obtained.