Marcus Tullius Cicero once said: “we are bound by the law, so that we may be free.” Much ink has been spilled on the questions raised by this statement. Is law a useful tool to achieve freedom, or are there better alternatives? How must the law be structured to make freedom possible? What if the law is unjust: are we still bound by it?

I have always been intrigued by questions relating to law, freedom, and justice more generally. My fascination for these topics was also the main reason why I decided to study law. I pursued my legal studies at the University of Zurich, where I obtained a Bachelor of Law degree in 2012, and a Master of Law degree in 2014.

During my studies, I discovered that particular fields of law such as Constitutional Law, Human Rights Law, and International Law are closely related to freedom and justice. I also realised that discussions about these issues are predominantly held among legal academics. In order to learn more about these matters and to partake in relevant discussions, I worked as a student assistant at chairs that deal with Constitutional Law, International Law, Human Rights Law, Philosophy of Law, and Roman Law.

Since I graduated from my Master of Law degree, I have been working as a research assistant at the Law Faculty of the University of Zurich. Specializing in Constitutional Law and Human Rights Law, I have co-authored scientific publications, taught classes, and supervised students.

With the generous support of the Fondation Zdenek et Michaela Bakala, I will be pursuing the Magister Juris (MJur) programme at the University of Oxford from September, 2015 to September, 2016. In my programme, I will delve into the legal and philosophical complexities of my fields of interest and will explore new approaches and solutions to the questions that fascinate me. The knowledge and experience I gain at Oxford will hopefully also bring me one step closer to answering the question raised by Cicero: do we need laws – and which laws do we need – in order for us to be free?