Ioanna Tourkochoriti is a legal scholar working in the field of human rights, jurisprudence, constitutional law, comparative law, political and moral philosophy. For eight years she held various research and faculty appointments at Harvard University. She was a Wertheim Fellow with the Labor and Worklife Program at Harvard Law School and a Lecturer on Law and Social Studies at the Committee on Degrees in Social Studies at Harvard University.
She received her PhD (in Law) from the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales - Paris, France. Her dissertation (743p.) was awarded the Highest Academic Distinction (unanimously, French/English defense). In order to finish writing it she spent two years as a Visiting Researcher at Harvard Law School. She received a Masters in Political Philosophy from EHESS - Paris, and an L.L.M. in Public Law from Université Panthéon-Assas, Paris II, France. She holds an L.L.B. in Law (4 year law degree) from Athens Law School, Greece. She has received a number of Fellowships and grants from the Greek State and the European Union.
She is the author of the book “Freedom of Speech: A Philosophical Inquiry Into the Revolutionary Roots of American and French Legal Thought" (under review), where she argues that the difference in the balancing of the two rights reflects a difference in the understanding of the role of the state concerning the definition of the content and the limits of liberty. She is also the author of numerous scholarly publications on freedom of expression, human dignity, anti-discrimination law, comparative constitutional law, transnational law. Her paper "The Burka Ban: Comparing Freedom of Religion in France and the USA has been downloaded more than 8,200 times at: http://scholarship.law.wm.edu/wmborj/vol20/iss3/4/ She is currently working on projects relating to freedom of speech, to the concept of human dignity and to comparing U.S. and E.U. Employment Discrimination Law.
She has lectured at numerous Universities all around the world. At Harvard University she taught courses on human rights and constitutional liberties from a comparative and international perspective, jurisprudence, social and political theory. She received Teaching Excellence awards almost every semester she taught at Harvard by the Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning and the Dean of Harvard College. She supervised a number of thesis and served as a member of the Board of Academic Advisors at the Committee on Degrees in Social Studies. She has also taught at the University of South Carolina (Comparative Law) and at the Law Department of Carleton University, Canada (Equality-Discrimination). She is currently Associate Professor at the School of Law of the National University of Ireland Galway.
Among other academic activities, she is a Member of the Board of the Younger Comparativists Committee of the American Society of Comparative Law, a member of the Board of Editors of the American Journal of Comparative Law and a member of the Social Sciences Outreach Group of the American Society of Comparative Law.
Apart from being a legal theorist she has also practical experience as a lawyer. She has handled human rights cases at the European Court of Human Rights and she has served as Investigator with the Greek Ombudsman (Human Rights Division). In this position she mediated in cases of complaints of the citizens against the government for violations of their rights and authored numerous reports proposing solutions to the Greek Government towards a more efficient public administration respectful of citizens' rights.