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Dr. Aparna Chandra

Assistant Professor

B.A. LL.B (Hons.), National Law School of India University, Bangalore [2006]

LL.M, Yale Law School [2007]

J.S.D., Yale Law School [2013]

Aparna graduated from the B.A. LL.B (Hons.) program at the National Law School of India University, Bangalore (NLSIU) in 2006, and secured the first rank in the University. She was awarded 8 gold medals, including for Best All Round Graduating Student; Jurisprudence; and Criminal Laws. At NLSIU, Aparna was Chief Editor of the National Law School of India Review, and an editor of the Socio-Legal Review.


Aparna received her LL.M and JSD degrees from Yale Law School in 2007 and 2013, respectively. She was a Lillian Goldman Scholar at Yale Law School from 2010-2012, and a Tutor in Law at the law school in 2011-2012. Her doctoral dissertation (under the supervision of Judith Resnik and guidance of Bruce Ackerman and Alec Stone Sweet) examined the role of international law in domestic constitutional adjudication, with a primary focus on the Indian Supreme Court.

From 2007 to 2009, Aparna worked at the National Judicial Academy, India, where she focused on developing “human rights based approaches” to judging, especially through mainstreaming rights in the judicial reasoning process. She also worked on issues of access to justice and participated in the Academy’s policy initiatives in this area.

In 2009, Aparna joined NLSIU as a Visiting Faculty. She taught courses on Legal Methods, Constitutional Interpretation, and International Criminal Law, as well as a paper on Access to Justice, for the PG Diploma on Human Rights Law.

Since 2013, Aparna has been an Assistant Professor at the National Law University, Delhi, where she teaches courses on public law and legal theory. Aparna is also the Research Director of the Centre for Constitutional Law, Policy and Governance at the National Law University, Delhi.She has been involved in various law reform efforts and has undertaken government advisory work, especially on the issue of human rights and civil liberties. Aparna has been working closely with the Law Commission of India on multiple reports on judicial process reform.She was also appointed by the Ministry of Law and Justice, Government of India, to be part of a committee to study the feasibility of introducing Judicial Impact Assessment in India. In addition, Aparnawas a Lead Researcher on a government funded project on systemic reforms in the criminal justice system in the State of Madhya Pradesh.

Aparna's areas of interest are constitutional law, human rights, gender and the law, and judicial process reform. Aparna has published widely and has presented her work at various national and international academic fora. Her on-going research work includes a collaboration with the Israel Democracy Institute on a European Research Council funded multi-nation study titled “Proportionality and Public Policy”; and a University of Chicago funded research project titledEmpirical Analysis of Indian Supreme Court decisions. Aparna has also collaborated with various human rights organizations, including Human Rights Law Network, Lawyers’ Collective, and Amnesty International India, on research and advocacy projects.

Aparna is an editor of the Journal of National Law University, Delhi; and faculty advisor of the NLUD Student Law Journal. 


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Area of Interest.
    • Constitutional Law
    • Human Rights
    • gender and the law
    • Judicial process reform.