Beate Sjåfjell is Professor Dr Juris at the Faculty of Law, Department of Private Law (since 2011), Visiting Professor at College of Europe, European Legal Studies Department (since 2021), and Academic Chair for the Knowledge Hub on Climate in the European University Alliance Circle U (since 2022). Professor Sjåfjell is founder and head of the Oslo Faculty’s Research Group Companies, Markets and Sustainability (the Company Law Group, 2012-2022), and for the new Research Group Sustainability Law, starting up in August 2022.
Professor Sjåfjell’s publications include the edited volumes Cambridge Handbook of Corporate Law, Corporate Governance and Sustainability (Cambridge University Press, 2019, co-editor Christopher M. Bruner); Creating Corporate Sustainability: Gender as an Agent for Change (Cambridge University Press, 2018, co-editor: Irene Lynch Fannon), and Company Law and Sustainability: Legal Barriers and Opportunities (Cambridge University Press, 2015, co-editor: Benjamin Richardson), translated into Korean. Her monograph Towards a Sustainable European Company Law (Kluwer Law International, 2009), is now freely available in full-text on SSRN. Professor Sjåfjell publishes extensively, notably on EU law, company law and corporate governance, and the integration of sustainability. Many of her papers are available at SSRN, where she is among the top 0.14 per cent of authors based on total downloads across fields.
Through active and innovative dissemination and communication Professor Sjåfjell contributes to corporate law debates and sustainability discussions both in the public debate and in academia in Norway and internationally.
Fields of interests
Professor Sjåfjell’s main field is company law and corporate governance, with much of her research concentrating on the integration of sustainability into the role of the corporate board. Already in her doctoral thesis, successfully defended in May 2008, she broke new ground, identifying and integrating sustainability as an overarching objective into EU company law and securities law. This was followed up in the Sustainable Companies Project (2010-2014), which focused on environmental sustainability in its multi-jurisdictional comparative analysis of company and accounting law. Her increasing interdisciplinary focus is reflected in the H2020-funded project Sustainable Market Actors for Responsible Trade (SMART, 2016-2020), which was successfully completed in the spring of 2020. SMART Legacy initiatives include the Futuring Nordics project, and continued industry engagement through the Business and Finance Forums.
Professor Sjåfjell collaborates extensively with scholars from many different countries. The international nature of her work is reflected in the membership in the Research Group as well as the two research networks she has founded and coordinates: the Sustainable Market Actors Research Network (the SMART Network) and Daughters of Themis: International Network of Female Business Scholars.
At the Faculty in Oslo, Professor Sjåfjell is responsible for coordinating company law research at the Department of Private Law and for the advanced company law elective for master students, and she supervises master students and PhD candidates on a variety of topics. At College of Europe, Professor Sjåfjell is responsible for the LLM course ‘Ensuring Sustainability through EU Law’.
Current PhD candidates include:
- Andreas Hösli, The Directors’ Duty of Care and Climate Change – Corporate Board Responsibility in the Anthropocene (working title)
- Chiara Morfea, De-Risking the Oil & Gas Sector Through Sustainability Due Diligence and the EU Taxonomy on Sustainable Finance (working title)
Successfully supervised PhD candidates include:
- Hanna Ahlström, Achieving Sustainability in EU Business and Financial Market Law – A Systems Thinking Approach (2020), currently Manager, Tax & Law, at EY
- Basang Wangdui, The Supervisory Role of the Board in China: A Comparative Study of Legal Evolution, Transplantation and Influence from Germany and the United States (2019), currently Associate Professor at Faculty of Law and Political Science, Tibet University
- Linn Anker-Sørensen, The Multifaceted Corporate Group. Testing EU’s response to hidden control structures (2019), currently senior manager at EY
- Founder and head of the Research Group Companies, Markets and Sustainability (2012-2022)
- Member of the European Commission’s Informal Group of Company Law Experts (2020-2024)
- Member of the Board for the PhD Course in Law and Innovation at the University of Macerata, Department of Law (from 2022)
- Member of the Advisory Board for the ERC Starting Grant project, ‘Law as a Vehicle for Social Change: Mainstreaming Non-Extractive Economic Practices’, University of Amsterdam (2020-2025)
- Founder and coordinator of Daughters of Themis: International Network of Female Business Scholars
- Founder and coordinator of Sustainable Market Actors Research Network (the SMART Network)
- Contact person, member of the steering group and of the group for PhD activities of the Nordic network in company Law
- Member of the European Corporate Governance Institute
- Editor of the University of Oslo Faculty of Law Legal Studies Research Paper Series on SSRN (contact: email@example.com)
- Editor of the International and Comparative Corporate Law Journal (contact: firstname.lastname@example.org)