Sam Muller

Interview conducted 27 May 2015 in The Hague, Netherlands, by David P. Briand, Linda Carter and Leigh Swigart.

portrait of sam mullerBackground

Interview Content

In this interview, Sam Muller reminisces about the creation of the Coordination Council by Claude Jorda, president of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), to ensure communication between different sectors of the ICTY; the thought process leading to the election of ad litem judges; the impact of Bruno Cathala in developing indicators for efficiency within the ICTY Registry that were then implemented by Hans Holthuis; the practice of Judge Jorda, Muller, and others to use French in the tribunal despite it being more comfortable for most of the employees to use English; and transitioning into his role as an advisor in the Registry of the International Criminal Court (ICC).

He discusses his role in negotiating victim and witness agreements; coordinating investigations in Kosovo; the differences between civil and common law systems; the life cycle of ICTY and its focus at different states; the need to develop and fund ICTY outreach; ICTY lessons for ICC; and his personal view on wherein lies the future of international justice.

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Biographical Information

Sam Muller was born in Noordwijk, The Netherlands. He holds both a Master of Laws and doctoral degree from Leiden University. He was associate professor and program coordinator of the Master of Laws Program at Leiden University from 1995-96, after which he worked for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency.

Muller served as senior legal adviser at the ICTY from 1998 to 2002, then transitioned to the International Criminal Court, where he acted as special adviser on external relations from 2002 to 2004. He founded HiiL, the Hague Institute for Innovation of Law, in 2005 and is currently the organization's chief executive officer, overseeing initiatives that connect knowledge about what works and is needed in the justice field with meaningful reform processes.