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Rhodes Academy

  • Rhodes Sign
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  • Ruins
  • Windmills
  • Palace
  • Fortress
  • Ruins

The Rhodes Academy of Oceans Law and Policy is an international collegial institution dedicated to fostering a better understanding of the modern law of the sea. Through education on the principles of contemporary oceans law and policy, the Rhodes Academy seeks to promote adherence to the rule of law in the world's oceans. Founded in 1995, the Academy held its inaugural session in the summer of 1996 and operates on an annual basis.

Applying to the Rhodes Academy

IMPORTANT UPDATE!  Due to the threat of the corona virus, the 2020 session of the Rhodes Academy has been cancelled/postponed.  The twenty-fifth session will be held july 4-July 23, 2021.

The twenty-fifth session of the Rhodes Academy of Oceans Law and Policy has been postponed. The application form for the 2021 session will be posted after 1 November 2020. Late or incomplete applications cannot be considered. The Rhodes Academy general information booklet, 2020 program brochure, and 2020 schedule are available, as is the poster.

The attendance fee for 2020 is $1,650 USD. Payment must be received by 1 June. The fee is non-refundable after 1 June. The fee includes all course material. There is no additional tuition fee. Classes and accommodations are located beside the Mediterranean Sea near Old Town, Rhodes. Accommodations and half board for an anticipated 20 night/21-day stay (28 June to 18 July 2020) in Rhodes are €1,580 to €1660 Euros for a single room and €1,140 to €1,260 Euros per person for a shared room in 2020. (The rates include VAT but do not include the stayover tax of €3 per room/day.)

Frequently asked questions

View an archive of photos of prior sessions

Comprehensive list of students who attended the Rhodes Academy 1996-2018

Scholarships/Financial Aid

The great majority of students are self-paying.  The Academy has a small number of scholarships available that are offered based on high academic merit and financial need. The scholarships are extremely competitive due to the many requests received for each session.  Virtually all of the few scholarships are designated by their grantees for applicants from developing nations. Students are urged to make every effort to secure their own funding in advance.

There is an annual scholarship sponsored by the International Cable Protection Committee for the best written paper on a submarine cable topic. The winner is awarded a full scholarship to the Rhodes Academy (alumni receive a cash prize): ICPC Writing Award

About the Rhodes Academy

The Rhodes Academy is a cooperative undertaking sponsored by the Center for Oceans Law and Policy (COLP) at the University of Virginia School of Law (Charlottesville, USA); the Aegean Institute of the Law of the Sea and Maritime Law (Rhodes, Greece); the Law of the Sea Institute of Iceland (Reykjavik, Iceland); the Max Planck Foundation for International Peace and the Rule of Law (Heidelberg, Germany); The Netherlands Institute for the Law of the Sea, Utrecht University (Utrecht, The Netherlands); and the Centre for International Law, National University of Singapore (Singapore). The Korea Maritime Institute (Busan, Korea) and Ankara University Research Center of Sea and Maritime Law (Ankara, Turkey) are associate sponsors. For many years the International Seabed Authority has provided science scholarships for developing country students. The current Directors designated by the sponsoring institutions are John Norton Moore, Tomas Heidar, Nikos Skourtos, Alex Oude Elferink, Rüdiger Wolfrum, and Robert Beckman. Administrative activities outside Rhodes are coordinated by the Center for Oceans Law and Policy, while the Aegean Institute coordinates local arrangements.

The Academy entails an intensive, three-week course of study, with lectures by leading jurists, practitioners, and international law faculty from around the world. Although it is a single course of study, the program is divided into two distinct units. The first two weeks focus on the foundations of modern oceans law, recent developments, and an overview of the 1982 United Nations Conference of the Law of the Sea. In the second week, several short courses address specific topics under the rubric of oceans law and policy. The third week typically focuses on an issue of current concern to the international community. Passing an optional examination enables students to receive a diploma from the Rhodes Academy.

In comments prepared for the inaugural session of the Rhodes Academy, United Nations Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali said, "The objective of your academy, fostering a better understanding of the law of the sea, is one to which the United Nations has dedicated itself almost since its inception. The success of the Academy is therefore of particular interest to the United Nations. . . . The exchange of ideas and other forms of cooperation between the United Nations and the Academy should serve our common purpose of fostering a better understanding of the law of the sea."

The student body of the Rhodes Academy is kept relatively small to allow for maximum interaction among students and lecturers. The distinguished international faculty and diverse student body are strengths of the Academy, bringing together different perspectives on global and regional issues. These elements make the Rhodes Academy a unique educational opportunity, and facilitate a more comprehensive understanding of the principles of oceans law and policy as reflected in the practice of States, the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and a myriad of related international agreements.


A distinguished faculty has taught at the Rhodes Academy over the past 24 years. The faculty has been selected from 16 different nationalities and its expertise is deep as well as wide ranging. The following is an alphabetical listing of lecturers who will participate as faculty during the 2020 session:

Ambassador David Balton
Senior Fellow, Polar Institute, Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars

Professor Robert Beckman
Head, Ocean Law and Policy Programme, Centre for International Law, National University of Singapore

Mr. Kent Bressie, Esq.
Partner at Harris, Wiltshire & Grannis LLP, Washington, DC

H.E. Vladimir Golitsyn
Former President, International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea

Associate Professor Maria Gavouneli
National & Kapodistrian University of Athens

H.E. Tomas H. Heidar
Judge, International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea; Director, Law of the Sea Institute, Iceland

H.E. Albert J. Hoffmann
Judge, International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea

Dr. Nong Hong
Executive Director and Senior Fellow, Institute for China-America Studies

Professor Todd Huntley
Head, National Security Law Dept, Office of the Navy Judge Advocate General (USA)

Ambassador Andrew Jacovides
Former Ambassador, Republic of Cyprus

Professor Hakan Karan
Director, Research Center of Sea and Maritime Law, Ankara University, Turkey

Professor Ronán Long
Director, Sasakawa Global Ocean Institute, World Maritime University

Mr. Lawrence Martin, Esq.
Partner, Foley Hoag, Washington, DC

Dr. Larry Mayer 
Director, Center for Coastal and Ocean Mapping/Joint Hydrographic Center, University of New Hampshire, Durham, NH

Fernanda Millicay, Minister Plenipotentiary
Argentine Embassy to the United Kingdom

Professor Alina Miron
University of Angers, Centre Jean Bodin - Recherche Juridique et politique

Professor Erik Molenaar
Deputy Director, Netherlands Institute for the Law of the Sea

Professor Emeritus John Norton Moore
Director, Center for Oceans Law & Policy, University of Virginia

Ambassador A. Havas Oegroseno
Indonesian Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the Federal Republic of Germany

Associate Professor Oya Özçayır
Honorary Fellow, University of Exeter Law School, UK

H.E. Jin-Hyun Paik
President, International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, Republic of Korea

Minister Counsellor Maria Telalian
Legal Advisor, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Greece

H.E. Tulio Treves
Former Judge, International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea; Professor, Universita di Milano, Milan, Italy

H.E. Rüdiger Wolfrum
Former President, International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea; Managing Director, Max Planck Foundation for International Peace and the Rule of Law, Heidelberg, Germany
Professor Myron H. Nordquist, the Associate Director of the Center for Oceans Law and Policy, directs the substantive portions of the Rhodes Academy while staff attend to administrative arrangements. Please contact Ms. Judy Ellis, Events Coordinator at COLP, for additional information: