Business law

The lead lawyer joins the space university mission

As part of its ongoing drive to recruit top talent, the University of Adelaide has appointed one of the country’s leading legal experts to contribute to space law and major ongoing projects.

Professor Melissa de Zwart is recognized as a thought leader in the application of law to emerging technology.

University of Adelaide Professor John Williams, Executive Dean of the School of Arts, Business, Law and Economics, said: “The University of Adelaide is delighted to have Professor de Zwart once again joining our community of world-leading researchers.”

“This is a prestigious appointment: Professor de Zwart has a distinguished international reputation in the field of international and domestic space law, as well as a proven track record in cyber law.

“She is without a doubt a national and international leader in the field of space law, and will make an excellent contribution to this emerging strength of South Australia.”

The headhunting will take place as part of the Top Talent Investing Programme, and Professor de Zwart will be based at the University’s Andy Thomas Space Resources Center (ATCSR) from Monday 4 September.

“I am very happy to be back at the University of Adelaide, given its strengths in the areas of defense and space,” said Professor de Zwart.

“My role at ATCSR will give me the opportunity to collaborate with a multidisciplinary team of experts focused on solving one of the biggest challenges of the future: how to live and work in space in a sustainable way.

“The projects that ATCSR is implementing provide national and international leadership in the areas of access to and use of outer space. I would be very happy to continue the work I have been doing with them, since their founding, as part of the Deep Space Habitat and Space Law theme leadership group.”

“The University of Adelaide is delighted that Professor de Zwart has once again joined our community of world-leading researchers.” Professor John Williams is Executive Dean of the School of Arts, Business, Law and Economics, University of Adelaide

University of Adelaide Associate Professor John Coulton, Director of the ATCSR Centre, said: “Professor de Zwart’s internationally recognized leadership in the field of space law brings expertise critical to our evolving efforts to achieve a dynamic and exciting future for humanity in space.”

Professor de Zwart’s work addresses the domestic and international legal frameworks that underpin the use of space. This will also reinforce its contribution to the recently announced ARC Center of Excellence in Plants 4 Space. The University of Adelaide is a founding partner of The Australian University in this large, global, interdisciplinary collaborative project.

The University of Adelaide’s Vice-Chancellor for Research, Professor Anton Middelberg, said: “In cementing our position as a leader in space research, I am really pleased that Professor de Zwart has once again joined the University as part of our pool of talent.”

“Her research will play a key role in the continued promotion of both the University of Adelaide Law School and the Andy Thomas Space Resource Centre.”

Professor de Zwart’s previous role was Professor (Digital Technology, Security, and Governance) at the Jeff Bleach Center for the American Alliance in Digital Technology, Security, and Governance at Flinders University. She holds a PhD from Monash University, an LLM from the University of Melbourne, a BA (Hons) and LLB (Hons) degrees from the University of Melbourne, as well as a Monash Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education and a Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education. . Education (online learning) from the University of Adelaide.

Prior to joining Flinders University, Professor de Zwart began her work at the University of Adelaide in 2011 and was Dean of Law from 2017 to 2021. She has also held visiting positions at the University of Amsterdam (2002) and the National University of Singapore (2006 and 2006). 2017).


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