Contact Dr Anicee Van Engeland
Prior to joining Cranfield University in 2016, Anicée (Anisseh) worked at the University of Exeter and SOAS. Her main research interests are the study of the relations between international law and Islamic law looking at security and defence, with a niche expertise in Iranian affairs. At Cranfield University, Anicée is the deputy to the academic director for the defence engagement programme "Managing Defence in the Wider Security Context" programme (UK MoD), the Assistant Director of Research and one of Cranfield’s Knowledge Exchange representatives. She is the leader of the 'Security and Society' Grand Challenge
Anicée holds a PhD in Islamic Studies, Politics and Law from the Institut d'Etudes Politiques in Paris (2006). She graduated in law from Paris II Assas and furthered her studies with three masters: a masters in law from Harvard Law School (2004), a masters in international relations from Paris II Assas (2002) and a masters in Iranian studies from Paris III Sorbonne.
She has been a visiting
academic at Cardiff University, the Oxford University’s Centre for Socio-Legal
Studies, Institute of Ismaili Studies, European University Institute, the
Tehran Middle East Center, University of Westminster, Trento University, Nagoya University and the Institute of Ismaili Studies. She has been a guest teacher at
George Marshall Center, European
Young Leaders Summer School, University of Tehran, Université de Nice and
Tehran Azad University.
Anicée welcomes PhD and masters’ students working in the field of human rights, humanitarian law, constitutional law, governance, rule of law, Islamic law and Iranian affairs.
Anicée Van Engeland is an Associate Professor of International Security & Law. She is an expert in the relations between Islam and international law, with a focus on human rights. She works on the whole Muslim world, with an expertise on Iran and Afghanistan. Anicée examines strategies to reconcile Islamic law and international law to avoid the fragmentation of international law, working at the intersections of governance, rule of law, human rights and humanitarian law.
Thanks to her work with the UK Ministry of Defence and the UK FCDO, she also has developed expertise on Ukraine, Georgia, Moldova, Morocco, Egypt, Lebanon, Sudan, Ethiopia and the Caribbean. She has an in-depth knowledge of the legal system of each of those countries, completed with a focus on the security sector. She has, for example, advised Ukrainian military and civilian leaders working in the Donbas in 2018 and has assisted the Ukrainian MOD in passing laws on combat prior to the Russian invasion in 2022. She has also been consulted about police-military cooperation from a legal perspective in the Caribbean. At Cranfield, she teaches modules on weapons procurement law, business law and weapons as well as legal and ethical frameworks for security and defence exports.
Anicée was the recipient of a 2022 UKRI Policy Support Fund and a 2021 British Academy writing workshop grant to develop a research project entitled 'Rethinking Liberal Peace through “Southern” Eyes'. She was the co-recipient of a Midlands Innovation grant in 2019: along with Professor Rebecca Gould, she created a research network in Islamic studies for the Midlands. She received a SOAS internal cross-disciplinary research grant in 2015 to theorise the reconciliation between the State and Sharia in a western context, a Higher Education Academy grant to implement a new teaching pedagogy in Islamic law, a two Higher Education Funding Council for England grants in 2009 for research-informed teaching. She was also involved in the Swiss Initiative to Commemorate the 60th Anniversary of the UDHR. She has received several small grants to work in Iran such as the Arthur C. Helton Fellowship provided by the American Society for International Law, or the Institut Français de Relations Internationales. She has been the recipient of small research grants funded by the Irmgard Coninx Stiftung Institute and Institute for Migration and the Hague Academy of International Law.
Before being an academic, Anicée was a human rights worker and aid worker. She still acts as a consultant for NGOs and international organisations, providing training and analysis, mainly in the field of Islamic law. She alo acts as an expert witness to courts in the UK, the US and the Netherlands, mostly in the field of immigration law. She has addressed the United Nations at several side-events during the Human Rights Council in Geneva. She has also spoken at the Iranian Parliament.
She is an editor for the Journal of the Contemporary Study of Islam, an editor for the Asian Yearbook of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law and an associate editor for the Muslim World Journal of Human Rights. Anicée is a member of Midlands Innovations, and a member of the Steering Committee of the Overseas Development Institute’s Advocating for Humanity: Opportunities for Improving Protection Outcomes in Conflict’s project. Past positions include being a member of the Steering Committee for Overseas Development Institute’s project Global History Project-Middle East (2012-14), being a council member for the British Association for Islamic Studies (2011-2016), and being a member of advisory board of the Irmgard Coninx Foundation in Berlin (2006-2014).
Ukrainian Ministry of Defence
Royal Air Force
UK Ministry of Defence
Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office
British Red Cross
United Nations Development Program
Articles In Journals
- Van Engeland A (2019) What if? An experiment to include a religious narrative in the approach of the European Court of Human Rights, Journal of Law, Religion and State, 7 (2) 213-241.
- Van Engeland & A (2018) Far from a revolution: the 2017 Iranian riots [published title What next after the storm in Iran?], New Statesman (London, England (8 January 2018).
- Van Engeland A (2016) Contextualisation of humanitarian assistance and its shortcomings in International Human Rights Law, Israel Law Review, 49 (2) 169-195.
- Van Engeland A (2015) Verse 9:5 of the Qurʾān as an Intermixed Ground for jus ad bellum and jus in bello: adapting Islamic classical theory to modern asymmetric conflict, GAIR-Mitteilungen 2015 129-149.
- Van Engeland A (2014) The balance between Islamic Law, Customary Law and Human Rights in Islamic constitutionalism through the prism of legal pluralism, Cambridge International Law Journal, 3 (4) 1321-1348.
- Gill A & Van Engeland A (2014) Criminalization or ‘multiculturalism without culture’? Comparing British and French approaches to tackling forced marriage, Journal of Social Welfare and Family Law, 36 (3) 241-259.
- Van Engeland A (2011) Transcending the Human Rights Debate: Iranian Intellectuals’ Contemporary Discourses and the New Hermeneutics of the Sharia, Middle East Journal of Culture and Communication, 4 (1) 72-89.
- Van Engeland A (2011) Human Rights and Strategies to avoid Fragmentation as a Threat to Peace: Iran as a case-study, Interdisciplinary Journal of Human Rights Law, 5 (1) 25-47.
- Van Engeland A (2008) Refugees in Iran – The Afghan and Iraqi Communities: Voluntary Repatriation Process, International Journal on Multicultural Societies, 10 (2) 144-168.
- Van Engeland A (2008) The Differences and Similarities between International Humanitarian Law and Islamic Humanitarian Law: Is there Ground for Reconciliation?, Journal of Islamic Law and Culture, 10 (1) 81-99.
- Van Engeland A (2016) Is Daesh a state in International Law and in Islamic Law?. In: American Society of International Law Annual Meeting (ASIL 2016), Washington, DC, 30 March - 2 April 2016.
- Van Engeland A (2016) New approaches to (de)radicalisation looking at the role of communities: the case of Islam. In: Cambridge Inter-Faith Programme, Cambridge, 21 May 2016.
- Van Engeland A (2015) Muslims living in the West: Between Inclusion and Exclusion. In: SOAS, SMLSSK & CALE Joint Workshop on Migration and Pluralism, Nagoya, 27 January 2015.
- Van Engeland A (2015) The Slow Emergence of a Legal Pluralism “à la française” and its Consequences. In: International Conference: Legal Pluralism and Human Rights within Family Disputes in Europe, Ghent, 26 October 2015.
- Van Engeland A (2015) Jihad, Conflict Transformation and Islamic Law: how British Muslim Communities deal with Violence. In: Oxford Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, University of Oxford, Oxford, 23 November 2015.
- Van Engeland A (2014) Challenges for Islamic law in the 21st century: Shii Islamic Law at a crossroads. In: 1st British Association of Islamic Studies Conference, Edinburgh, 10 April 2014.
- Van Engeland A (2014) “The tensions between Shari’a and international law through the lens of CEDAW”, Shari'a responsibility: conditions and conflicts. In: 2nd AMI Contemporary Fiqhi Issue Workshop, Birmingham, 3 April 2014.
- Van Engeland A (2014) Meeting the Challenge of Developing a Gender-Inclusive Methodology in Islamic law. In: IGLP Research Conference: Heterodox Approaches to Islamic Law and Policy, Harvard, 2 June 2014.
- Van Engeland A (2014) An Argument in Favour of Transnational Refugee Law: An Analysis of the Case of Afghan Refugees. In: International Law Association British Branch Spring Conference 2014, Foundations and Futures of International Law, London, 23 May 2014.
- Turns D & Van Engeland A (2021) Chapter 4: the legal framework for security. In: Managing security: concepts and challenges, London: Routledge, p. 64-81.
- Van Engeland A (2019) Chapter 17: sexual politics and law in Iran: the narrative surrounding the 2013 bills. In: The Asian yearbook of human rights and humanitarian law, Leiden: Brill, p. 429-451.
- Van Engeland & A (2017) Be Karbala Miravim!: Iran and the Challenges of Internalizing International Humanitarian Law in a Muslim Country. In: Do the Geneva Conventions Matter?, Oxford: Oxford University Press, p. 250-280.
- Van Engeland A, (2016) Women's Rights in the Middle East: constitutions and consequences. In: Routledge Handbook on Human Rights and the Middle East and North Africa. Anthony Tirado Chase (ed.), Abingdon: Routledge, p. 243-254.
- Van Engeland A (2015) The Protection of Public Property. In: The 1949 Geneva Conventions: A Commentary. Clapham A, Gaeta P, Sassoli M (ed.), Oxford: Oxford University Press, p. 1535-1550.
- Van Engeland A (2014) Bridging Civilizations: The New Hermeneutics of Islamic Law. In: Engaging the Other: Public Policy and Western-Muslim Intersections. Mahmoud Eid and Karim Karim (ed.), New York: Palgrave MacMillan US, p. 111-132. Dataset/s: 10.1057/9781137403698
- Rudolph R & Van Engeland A (2013) From Terrorism to Politics. Abingdon: Routledge.
- Van Engeland A (2013) Islam as Religion of Peace: an Articulated Reply to Terrorism. In: The Liberal Way of War: Legal Perspectives. Robert Barnidge Jr (ed.), Abingdon: Routledge, p. 239-258.
- Van Engeland A (2011) Civilian or Combatant? A Challenge for the 21st century. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Van Engeland A (2010) Islam and the Protection of Civilians in the Conduct of Hostilities: The Asymmetrical war from the Transnational Terrorist Groups’ Viewpoints and from the Muslim Modernists’ Viewpoints. In: Jihad and the challenges of international and domestic law. Cherif Bassiouni, Amna Guellali (ed.), The Hague: Hague Academic Press/Springer, p. 136-166.
- Van Engeland A (2009) On the Path to Equal Citizenship and Gender Equality: Political, Judicial and Legal Empowerment of Muslim Women. In: Gender Equality: Dimensions of Women Equal Citizenship. Linda McClain, Joanna Grossman (ed.), Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, p. 390-408.