Universiteit Leiden

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Willemien den Ouden

Professor of Constitutional and Administrative Law

Prof.mr.drs. W. den Ouden
+31 71 527 --

Professor Willemien den Ouden is Professor of Constitutional and Administrative Law at Leiden Law School and a Research Fellow of the E.M. Meijers Institute of Legal Scientific Research (one day a week). She is also a State Councillor at the Administrative Jurisdiction Division at the Dutch Council of State.

More information about Willemien den Ouden

As Professor of Constitutional and Administrative Law at Leiden Law School and as a Research Fellow of the E.M. Meijers Institute of Legal Scientific Research, Willemien den Ouden's work focuses mainly on administrative law. Her field of expertise is European and Duch financial administrative law (subsidy law, limited public rights, concessions, the law concerning the European Structural Funds and State Aid, education funding and allowances) and general administrative law.

Curriculum vitae
Willemien den Ouden (1971) studied theology, graduating in 1994 with a specialisation in philosophies of life, and law, graduating in 1996 with a specialisation in administrative law, both degrees from Leiden University.

She first joined the Department of Constitutional and Administrative Law at Leiden Law School as a PhD student and subsequently became a lecturer at the same department. In January 2002, she successfully defended her doctoral thesis entitled ‘Wie betaalt bepaalt? Een onderzoek naar de rechtmatigheid van subsidieverplichtingen (Deventer: Kluwer 2002) (Who pays decides? A study on the legality of aid commitments). She was subsequently appointed to the position of Associate Professor, and in March 2007 she became a full professor. Her inaugural lecture held on 11 April 2008 was entitled ‘Het wankele evenwicht tussen Europees en Nederlands subsidierecht bij de uitvoering van Europese structuurfondsen’ (The unstable balance between European and Dutch subsidy law in the realisation of European structural funds). From 2012 - 2016 she was Dean of the University Honours Academy. From September 2017 to May 2020, she was the Academic Director of the Institute of Public Law at Leiden Law School. Currently, she works one day a week as professor. In addition, she holds the position of State Councillor at the Administrative Jurisdiction Division of the Dutch Council of State. In addition, she is also a deputy councillor at the Dutch Trade and Industry Appeals Tribunal. She is also Chairman of the Board of the Dutch Administrative Law Association, the scientific association for the practice of administrative law with more than 1,500 members. 

For over two decades, Willemien den Ouden has published books and articles in Dutch as well as in international law journals in the field of European and Dutch administrative law and financial administrative law. She was selected as the best candidate by her peers for writing the best Dutch annotation of the year on administrative case law in 2007 (with Tom Barkhuysen), 2010 and in 2011 (with Michiel Tjepkema). She contributed to the English textbook Europeanisation of Public Law, published in 2015. In 2016 the book Scarcity and the State: The Allocation of Limited Rights by the Administration was published with Willemien den Ouden as one of the editors. She regularly contributes to (scholarly) collections or books. For example, together with J.E. van den Brink, she made published a contribution in Wollenschläger F., Wurmnest W., Möllers T.M.J. (Eds.), Private Enforcement of European Competition and State Aid Law: Current Challenges and the Way Forward. International Competition Law Series, Deventer: Kluwer Law International, entitled ‘Private Enforcement in the Netherlands. New Dutch Legislation, but Little Action.’

Relevant additional functions

Administratiefrechtelijke Beslissingen (journal for annotated administrative case law
Chairman of the editorial board

College van Beroep voor het bedrijfsleven (Trade and Industry Appeals Tribunal)
Deputy judge

Ministerie van Binnenlandse Zaken en Koninkrijksrelaties (The Ministry of the Interior and Kingdom Relations)
Member of the ‘Referendumcommissie’ (commission for referenda)

Stichting Recht en Overheid (Foundation Law and Government)
Member of the board

European Group of Public Administration (EGPA)
Member of the study group ‘Law and Public Administration’

Nederlandse Publieke Omroep (Netherlands Public Broadcasting)
Member of the commission of appeal

Review of European Administrative Law (REALaw);
Member of the Editorial Advisory Board

Nederlands Juristenblad (Netherlands Law Journal)
Staff member

Thorbecke chair
Member of the board and the curatorium

Netherlands Administrative Law Library (NALL)
Member of the board

European Public Law Organisation (EPLO);

Vrouwennetwerk Bestuursrecht (Women’s Network for Administrative Law)
Member of the board

Europa Instituut Leiden University
Member of the curatorium

De VAR Vereniging voor bestuursrecht (Association for Administrative Law)

Relevant former additional functions

  • Member of the commission of appeal of the ‘Ministerie Volksgezondheid, Welzijn en Sport (VWS)’;
  • Member of the commission of appeal of the municipality Zoetermeer;
  • Member of the commission of guidance ‘Burgerraadslieden Leiden’.

PhD Supervision

Willemien den Ouden supervised the PhD research of Dr Chris de Kruif, Dr Jacobine van den Brink, Dr Olaf van Loon, Dr Annemarie Drahmann, Dr Alke Metselaar en Dr J.M.J. van Rijn van Alkemade, Dr Jaap Wieland, Dr Clara van Dam, Jouke Tegelaar. She is currently the (co)supervisor of Ali Mohammad Georgina KuipersLouise VerboeketHeleen van AmerongenEsmée DriessenAli Al Khatib and Demy Jongkind

Willemien den Ouden lectures at Leiden University, and also outside the University, in the field of (financial) administrative law.

Professor of Constitutional and Administrative Law

  • Faculteit Rechtsgeleerdheid
  • Instituut voor Publiekrecht
  • Staats- en Bestuursrecht

Work address

Kamerlingh Onnes Building
Steenschuur 25
2311 ES Leiden
Room number --




  • College van Beroep voor het bedrijfsleven Raadsheer-plaatsvervanger
  • Nederlands Juristenblad (NJB) Medewerker
  • European group of Public Administration (EGPA) Lid studiegroep 'Law and Public Administration'
  • European Public Law Organisation (EPLO) Lid
  • Stichting Leger des Heils Welzijns- en gezondheidszorg Lid Raad van Toezicht
  • Nederlandse Juristen Vereniging lid bestuur
  • Grotius Hoofddocent opleiding bestuursrecht
  • Kluwer uiitgeverij Lid redactie Nederlands Tijdschrift voor bestuursrecht
  • Raad van State Staatsraad
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