The President

ECHR Building

President Dean Spielmann

President Dean Spielmann

Dean Spielmann studied at the Catholic University of Louvain (Belgium) and Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge (United Kingdom). He became a member of the Luxembourg Bar in 1989. As a lawyer he worked in various fields, including administrative law, civil and criminal law and human rights law. He acted as Counsel in a number of cases before the Commission and Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. He was also a member of the Bar Council and the Disciplinary and Administrative Council of the Legal Profession, as well as sitting on various committees of the Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe (CCBE).

Dean Spielmann has also been a member of the European Union Network of Independent Experts on Fundamental Rights and the Advisory Commission on Human Rights of Luxembourg.

He has taught at the universities of Louvain Luxembourg and Nancy (France) and is a certified member of the Grand-Ducal Institute.

Dean Spielmann is an Honorary Fellow of Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge, an Honorary Professor of University College London and an Honorary Bencher of Gray’s Inn, London. He is doctor honoris causa of the State University of Yerevan.

Since 2004 Dean Spielmann has been a judge at the European Court of Human Rights, where he was elected Section President in 2010 and Vice-President of the Court in 2012, before being elected President of the Court in September 2012.

Dean Spielmann is the author of numerous publications on criminal law and human rights, amongst other subjects.

Full CV

Main publications

Photo gallery of President Dean Spielmann

Presidency of the Court

The plenary Court elects its President, for a period of three years, provided that such period does not exceed the duration of the President's term of office. The President continues to hold office until the election of his or her successors.

The President of the Court directs the work and administration of the Court. The President represents the Court and, in particular, is responsible for its relations with the authorities of the Council of Europe. The President presides at plenary meetings of the Court, meetings of the Grand Chamber and meetings of the panel of five judges. The President does not take part in the consideration of cases being heard by Chambers except where he or she is the judge elected in respect of a Contracting Party concerned.

French National Assembly

On 17 June 2015 President Spielmann addressed the French National Assembly’s Statutes Committee and answered questions from its members. André Potocki, the judge elected in respect of France, also took part in the hearing.


Speech by the President (in French only)

Congrès des notaires de France

Speech given by President at the 111ème congrès des notaires de France - May 2015


Interview - Role of the ECHR

In connection with the Belgian Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers, a video about the Marckx v. Belgium case has been produced, featuring an interview with the President of the Court, Dean Spielmann, and the former Vice-President and judge elected in respect of Belgium, Françoise Tulkens.


Interview on BBC

Interview given by President Spielmann on the BBC television programme HARDtalk - 14/01/2014

Video of the interview

Official Visits

  • French Cassation Court

    French Cassation Court

    On 10 July 2015, President Spielmann paid an official visit to Paris at the French Cassation Court. During the visit, he was received by the First President Bertrand Louvel and the Chief Prosecutor Jean-Claude Marin. Dean Spielmann was accompanied by Guido Raimondi, Vice President of the Court, Angelika Nussberger, judge elected in respect of Germany, André Potocki, judge elected in respect of France and Erik Fribergh, Registrar.

    More info

  • Law Commission

    Law Commission

    President Dean Spielmann has attended on 16 July, in London, the 50th Anniversary Reception of the Law Commission.

  • Visit by a delegation of the International Court of Justice

    Visit by a delegation of the International Court of Justice

    On 25 and 26 June 2015, a delegation of the International Court of Justice visited the Court, headed by its President, Ronny Abraham. The visiting Judges took part in roundtable discussions with Judges of the Court and members of the Registry.

    Speech by the President (in French)

    Speech by Judge Sicilianos (in French)


Visit to Spain

View all official visits

President's News

  • Conference "Internet: freedom and restrictions"


    On 26 June 2015, President Dean Spielmann participated in the conference "Internet: freedom and restrictions" organized by the Observatoire luxembourgeois du droit européen, in Luxembourg. The same day, he gave a speech entitled "Music and Human Rights" at the Oxford University Society of Luxembourg.

    Speech by the President (in French)

  • Visit by a Member of the PACE

    Visit by a Member of the PACE
    On 22 June 2015, Pierre-Yves Le Borgn’, Deputy, Member of the Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, visited the Court and was received by President Spielmann. André Potocki, the judge elected in respect of France, also attended the meeting.

View all President's news

Recent Speeches by the President

  • Conférence Saint-Yves


    « Mon expérience strasbourgeoise » - Conférence Saint-Yves, Association luxembourgeoise des juristes catholiques.

    15 June 2015

    Speech by the President (in French only)

  • Conférence annuelle du Réseau HELP


View all speeches