UCL Faculty of Laws


Yanwen Zhang

Key information 
Yanwen Zhang 2022



Yanwen joined UCL Laws as a MPhil/PhD Candidate in September 2019. Her doctoral research in international investment law addresses the judicial function and institutional design of investor-State dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanisms, with a particular focus on the ISDS reform at United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Working Group III. Yanwen’s research is supported by the UCL Graduate Research Scholarship and the UCL Overseas Research Scholarship.

Alongside her PhD, Yanwen joined the UCL Laws teaching teams of International Law of Foreign Investment (LLM), Law of the World Trade Organization (LLM), Public International Law (LLB), European Union Law (LLB), Criminal Law (LLB), and Laws’ Connections (LLB) either as a module tutor or as a teaching assistant. She was also a visiting researcher at Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law in Heidelberg in 2022.

Research Supervisors

Research Interests

Public International Law, International Economic Law, International Dispute Settlement, International Human Rights Law

Professional Experience

  • Assistant Editor, The Journal of World Investment & Trade
  • Member of Editorial Board, UCL Journal of Law and Jurisprudence
  • Research Assistant, Research Center on Belt and Road Initiative at National Judges College in Beijing
  • Case Manager Assistant, Beijing Arbitration Commission/Beijing International Arbitration Center

Recent Publications & Conference Presentations

  • Yanwen Zhang, ‘Equitable Representation on International Benches and the Appointment of Tribunal Members in Investor-State Dispute Settlement: A Historical Perspective’ (2023) 14(4) Journal of International Dispute Settlement 428
  • Yanwen Zhang, ‘Appointing Adjudicators in Investor-State Arbitration and International Dispute Settlement: Diversity Concerns and Policy Responses’ UCL Laws International Law Group Event (November 2023)
  • Yanwen Zhang, ‘The Judicial Function of Investment Tribunals: Taking Foundational Assumptions Seriously’ (2022) 25(1) Journal of International Economic Law 129
  • Yanwen Zhang, ‘The Historical Roots and Institutional Reforms of Investor-State Dispute Settlement: A Public International Law Perspective’ Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, MPIL Agora (June 2022)