International Women's Day: In Conversation with Dr Mavluda Sattorova

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Dr Mavluda Sattorova

March 9, 2021

To mark the 2021 International Women’s Day themed #Choose to Challenge, Afronomicslaw.org celebrates Dr Mavluda Sattorova’s brilliant contributions to International Investment Law and Investor-State Arbitration. Dr Sattorova is Reader at Liverpool Law School, University of Liverpool. She works closely with international organisations and government agencies involved in the design and reform of international investment treaties and national investment policies.

#Choose to Challenge: A challenged world is an alert world and from challenge comes change. So let's all choose to challenge.”

Afronomicslaw.org (A): Please tell us about your research.

Dr Mavluda Sattorova (MS): My research focuses on international investment law, with a particular focus on the ways in which investment treaty law interacts with national policy-making. My most recent work has explored these interactions with the aid of empirical data.

A: How did you become interested in academia and international economic law?

MS: Purely accidentally! But my father was a maths professor, and even though I did not inherit his gift for exact sciences, following his footsteps into academia felt natural. I became fascinated by investment law during my LLM, after a seminar on the NIEO and its impact on investor-state transactions.

A: What informs your scholarly interventions?

MS: I came to realise that being as a scholar from the global South does inform a lot in what and how I research. Curiosity is also major factor: I am intrigued by people and praxis hidden behind the facade of norms and institutions.

A: Have you faced any challenges in your career because of your gender? If you have, how did you overcome these challenges?

MS: Of course! Being a woman in academia or elsewhere comes with a whole raft of challenges. I never consciously thought about overcoming these challenges - I just tend to try things.

A: What lessons have you learned in the course of your career so far?

MS: It might sound a bit cliched but staying true to yourself and a bit of humility is something that has helped me to stay grounded whilst also expanding my horizons.

A: What advice would you give to younger female academics and students?

MS: Mentors and role models are important, but you can be your own, authentic role model.

A: Please describe yourself in three words.

MS: Curious, restless, funny.

A: What changes to the world would you like to see?

MS: I worry a lot about ecological degradation and would like to see concrete steps to reverse it.