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Steven Schneebaum

Steven Schneebaum

Adjunct Lecturer


Steven M. Schneebaum, Interim Director of the International Law and Organizations Program for the 2019-20 academic year, has been a lawyer in private practice in Washington, DC, and a university teacher of international legal topics, for four decades. After partnerships in three national law firms, he established his own firm in 2014. He has taught international advocacy at SAIS since 1990, the law of the European Union from 2000 through 2007, and constitutional law since 2008.

Schneebaum’s professional focus has been on litigation and international law, representing clients in courts around the country (at both trial and appellate level) as well as in international and domestic arbitral proceedings. He also counsels clients on dispute avoidance through negotiation. His practice over the years has concentrated on such areas as international trade (including matters before the WTO), antitrust, constitutional law, contracts, legal malpractice, public and private international law, and judicial review of both government agency actions and arbitral awards.  

He has chaired numerous organizations dedicated to making legal representation available to people who cannot afford it (including individuals on Death Row), and to promoting the study, practice, and implementation of international law, focusing especially on human rights. He has written or co-authored dozens of articles published in scholarly journals and legal periodicals, as well as at least eight problems for the Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition. He is a frequent speaker on international law topics at educational institutions and professional associations, and has lectured in England, Germany, Italy, Moldova, Ukraine, Japan, Korea, India, and Pakistan, among others. He has acted for clients throughout the United States, as well as in Canada, Liberia, Mali, Somalia, the U.K., France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Turkey, Chile, Venezuela, Ecuador, Korea, Myanmar, Australia, and throughout Central America. On behalf of human rights organizations, he has observed elections or criminal trials in Liberia, Korea, Nepal, and Chile, and Myanmar.

Schneebaum currently serves on the Boards of Directors of the American Branch of the International Law Association, the International Law Students Association (of which he was founding Chairman), the Council for Court Excellence, and Child Justice, Inc.; as well as advisory boards to the British-American Project and the Center for Justice and Accountability. He is a Counsellor to the American Society of International Law, and a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation. In addition to Johns Hopkins SAIS, Schneebaum has taught at Catholic, American, Cornell, George Washington, and Oxford Universities.

He was educated at Yale University, from which he received a Bachelor of Arts degree magna cum laude, at Oberlin College (Master of Arts in philosophy), Oxford University (Bachelor and Master of Arts in jurisprudence, the former with First Class Honors), and George Washington University Law School (Master of Comparative Law). His honors and awards include the Msgr. Geno Baroni Caritas Award from Catholic Community Services (2005), the United States Army Commander’s Award for Public Service (2009), and the Pamela Young Lifetime Achievement Award from the International Law Students Association (2018). He is a member of the District of Columbia Bar and numerous federal trial and appellate bars, including that of the United States Supreme Court.



  • International Law
  • Constitutional Law
  • European Union Law
  • International Trade Disputes

In the News

What in the world? U.S. elections seen through the lens of international human rights law.

Steven Schneebaum delivered lecture for University of the Caucasus, 12/04

U.S. elections: Trump threatens to contest poll at Supreme Court.

Steven Schneebaum interviewed on CGTN, 11/05

U.S. election: The legal challenges explained.

Steven Schneebaum interviewed on Radio New Zealand, 11/05

What role will the courts play in determining the election’s outcome?

Steven Schneebaum interviewed in Johns Hopkins Hub, 11/03

What does international law have to say about nuclear weapons?

Steven Schneebaum wrote for SAIS Review of International Affairs, 4/17