Dr Jelena Gligorijević FHEA, an expert on constitutional law and media law at The Australian National University (ANU) College of Law, has been named the inaugural Gerard McCoy Visiting Fellow at the University of Canterbury School of Law, New Zealand.
The fellowship is named in honour of the late Dr Gerard McCoy SBS, QC SC, a well-known New Zealand barrister and constitutional law expert who practised and lived for most of his life in Hong Kong.
Dr McCoy, who also taught public law in universities throughout Australasia, Asia and Europe, is known for his work in human rights and civil liberties cases, defending dissidents and political activists, and gaining a reputation as one of Hong Kong's finest counsels.
Dr Gligorijević, who will deliver lectures on constitutional law and media law as part of her fellowship, said she hoped to increase scholarly exchanges between Australia and New Zealand.
“I am honoured to receive this visiting fellowship, especially as it is an exciting opportunity to strengthen ties with one of New Zealand's pre-eminent law faculties, in the spirit of strengthening trans-Tasman links between legal scholars generally.
“I am looking forward to sharing my work across both of my disciplines with New Zealand scholars (and students), and representing ANU at Canterbury.”
In a career spanning 40 years, Dr McCoy practised across both civil and criminal law in Hong Kong. He dedicated a significant part of his career to human rights, defending leaders of the region’s Occupy movement.
Dr Gligorijević described him as “one of New Zealand’s greatest legal minds” whose legacy included a devotion to legal education, scholarship and practise.
“Although Dr McCoy practised for most of his career in Hong Kong, he was well known all across Australasia, particularly for his work representing political activists and dissidents and defending human rights and civil liberties.
“He gained a very high reputation in Hong Kong, where he practised across both civil and criminal law. He taught public law across Europe and Australasia, and was a co-author of the 2018 book Habeas Corpus: Australia, New Zealand and The South Pacific.”
The fellowship was established this year to honour the memory of Dr McCoy, who died in April 2020 aged 63 after a serious illness. He was an Adjunct Professor at the University of Canterbury School of Law.