Suzanne Spears

Suzanne Spears

Global Professor of Law
Notre Dame London Law Programme

Home Affiliation: Founder and Principal, Paxus LLP

Suzanne Spears is recognized globally for her expertise in international law, international arbitration, and business and human rights. Prior to founding Paxus LLP in 2022, she spent 20 years practicing in these areas with leading global law firms in London and New York. Most recently, she was a Partner in the Litigation, Arbitration & Investigations Group at Allen & Overy, where she co-headed the Global Business & Human Rights Practice and co-founded the ESG Group.

Spears advises and represents governments, international organisations and private clients on a wide range of contentious and non-contentious issues arising under public international law. She regularly acts as counsel before international commercial and Investor-State arbitration tribunals (including under the ICC, UNCITRAL, ICSID, PCA and other rules) and she has experience in transnational tort litigation, State-to-State arbitration and proceedings before the International Court of Justice.

She also advises clients on dispute prevention, risk management, due diligence, compliance and governance with respect to business and human rights. She is often instructed to advise on highly sensitive issues, such as relationships with host governments, security forces, communities and civil society.

In addition to being a lawyer, with a J.D. from Columbia University School of Law, she is a political and social scientist by background, with a master’s from Columbia’s School of International and Public Affairs, and a bachelor’s in International Relations from Tufts University. She was a U.S. Fulbright Scholar in Spain and has held positions with the United Nations (in New York and Colombia), the Council on Foreign Relations and the Inter-American Institute of Human Rights.

Originally from California, she is admitted in New York and practiced as a foreign registered lawyer in London for many years.