Professor Cécile Aptel joined The Fletcher School in 2011, initially as a full-time tenure-track associate professor of international law. She is now Professor of Practice of International Law while serving as the Deputy Director of UNIDIR. She is also a Distinguished Visiting Scholar at Harvard University. Until 2020, she was director of policy, strategy and knowledge at the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.
A recognized expert in the areas of child rights, transitional justice and international criminal justice, she has over 20 years of experience in international affairs, working primarily with the U.N., managing legal and policy programs, notably at the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, the International Independent Investigation Commission, and the U.N. Internal Oversight Services.
Prof. Aptel has also worked for the European Union, think-tanks and NGOs, including the International Centre for Transitional Justice, where she established and directed the Program on Children and Transitional Justice. She was awarded the Jennings Randolph Senior Fellowship by the United States Institute of Peace in 2010 for her work on child protection, was invited to brief the UN Security Council on children and armed conflicts, and has published extensively on child rights and international law.