Amsterdam Center for International Law

Mr S.J. (Sander) Wirken LLM

  • Faculty of Law
    Criminal Law
  • Visiting address
    Oudemanhuispoort 4-6  Amsterdam
  • Postal address:
    Postbus  1030
    1000 BA  Amsterdam


Sander Wirken joined the University of Amsterdam as a PhD researcher in September 2012. He conducts research focused on transitional justice, organized crime and the rule of law, with case studies on Guatemala and Colombia.

He obtained his LL.B. (Law) and his B.Sc. (International Relations) from the University of Amsterdam. He completed his LL.M. degree (International Public Law) at the University of Amsterdam cum laude . For his master's thesis about impunity in Guatemala he was awarded the University of Amsterdam Thesis Prize 2011. He obtained an M.Sc. degree (International Security) cum laude from Sciences Po Paris, and was awarded the Bourse d'Excellence Descartes 2010 and the Sciences Po Prix de la vie étudiante 2012.

Together with documentary director Joey Boink, Sander made Burden of Peace, a documentary about former Attorney General of Guatemala Claudia Paz y Paz. The documentary had its premiere at the Movies that Matter Film Festival 2015 and has since screened at over 30 festivals around the world. Burden of Peace received awards at film festivals in Biarritz, Brussels, Bratislava and Vienna, and was nominated for the Golden Calf for Best Documentary at the Netherlands Film Festival 2015. 

Sander is a member of the Supervisory Board of Niños de Guatemala; of the Board of Impunity Watch; and of the Advisory Board of the Ibero-American Institute of the Hague. 


  • Bosdriesz, H., & Wirken, S. (2014). An imperfect success - The Guatemalan genocide trial and the struggle against impunity for international crimes. International Criminal Law Review, 14(6), 1067-1094. DOI: 10.1163/15718123-01406007 [details]
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