• University life,
  • Institutional life,

Philippe Sands and Johannes Masing receive honorary doctorates from Jean Moulin Lyon 3 University

Published on April 18, 2023 Updated on April 18, 2023

On Monday 19 September 2022, Jean Moulin Lyon 3 University, at the suggestion of its Faculty of Law, awarded the title of Doctor Honoris Causa to Johannes Masing, professor of law and former judge at the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe (Germany), and Philippe Sands, British-French professor of law, lawyer, writer and novelist.

Honorary doctorate award ceremony | 19 September 2022 | Roubier Amphitheatre - 15 quai Claude Bernard - Lyon 7th arrondissement

From l. to r.: Mathilde Philip-Gay, Professor of Public Law; Hervé de Gaudemar, Honorary Dean of the Faculty of Law; Olivier Gout, Dean of the Faculty of Law; Philippe Sands, Doctor Honoris Causa of Jean Moulin University; Olivier Dugrip, Rector of the Académie de Lyon; Éric Carpano, President of Jean Moulin University; Johannes Masing, Doctor Honoris Causa of Jean Moulin University; Frédérique Ferrand, Professor of Private Law.

© Photo credit: David VENIER - Université Jean Moulin Lyon 3

The Honorary Doctorates

Philippe Sands Philippe SANDS

Professor of law and lawyer Philippe Sands is committed to the defence of human rights and to the affirmation of international justice and was a pioneer in defining the crime of ecocide. He was recently one of the first international lawyers to call for the creation of a special criminal court to judge the crime of aggression committed against Ukraine.
Philippe Sands is also a well-known writer and novelist, addressing the history of human rights and the challenges of memorialisation. The author of several acclaimed books (East West Street and The Ratline), his work deals with issues related to the memory of the Second World War and crimes against humanity, particularly the Holocaust. His latest work, The Last Colony (French version published on 31/08/22 by Albin Michel), is a denunciation of the horrors of colonialism viewed through Britain’s devastating stranglehold on the Chagos Archipelago, its last colony.


Johannes Masing Johannes MASING

A law, philosophy and music graduate, professor of constitutional law at the University of Freiburg im Breisgau, former judge at the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe from 2008 to 2020, and former Director of the Department of Environmental Law at his university, Johannes Masing has been a visiting professor at several universities, including the Jagiellonian University in Krakow, the University of Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, Paris-Panthéon-Assas University (Paris 2), the University of Pennsylvania Law School and Jean Moulin Lyon 3 University.
His work focuses on the defence of fundamental rights and more generally on analysing the interaction of different human rights protections at a national, European and international level.


Each of these figures is fighting for a Europe of fundamental rights and the defence of the rule of law. Each of them, through their commitment, has laid the groundwork for re-founding the European ideal at a time when it is being called into question on all sides.

Éric Carpano, President of Jean Moulin University.