References

I had the pleasure of being a member of the doctorate committee of Annemarie’s PhD dissertation. Her work struck me as very original and creative, taking a multi-disciplinary approach to the question of how human rights treaties work (or not) in practice, in particular in relation to Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). Her research made an important contribution to the academic debates on treaty law and compliance, universality of human rights and traditional practices. Annemarie has not only proven to be a real expert on these topics, but she knows how to transform theoretical and conceptual ideas into practical legal and policy advice. Annemarie has further taught several courses on Public International Law at the University of Amsterdam at the Department of International and European Law and in the interdisciplinary programme PPLE. She is a very dedicated teacher who can explain complex concepts well and encourages students to think critically about the law. She is well organized and very pleasant to work with.

Prof. dr. Yvonne Donders
Head of the Department of International and European Public Law - University of Amsterdam

I have known Annemarie Middelburg for some five years now. I was one of the supervisors of her PhD-thesis and as the then Director of the International Victimology Institute Tilburg (INTERVICT), I also came across her on a frequent basis in all kinds of different activities she undertook during her tenure in Tilburg (the Netherlands). From day one she has struck me as a very active and able member of staff. She always operated in a remarkably independent way. She is curious by nature and has an astounding appetite for knowledge. She works long hours and she is highly disciplined. This enables her to be a prolific writer, as is also testified by her substantial list of publications. She is dedicated to her job and very result oriented. Annemarie operates on the basis of high quality standards; she is always looking for ways to improve her research and is never shy to consult others who can add a dimension or perspective to the problem at hand. All in all, I regard Annemarie Middelburg as a person who is ideally positioned to run her own business in consultancy and research in her extensive areas of expertise.

Prof. dr. Marc Groenhuijsen
Founding President, INTERVICT - Tilburg University

I had the pleasure of working with Annemarie as she was the lead author of one of our large publications on Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), entitled: ‘Analysis of Legal Frameworks on Female Genital Mutilation in Selected Countries in West Africa’. This report was developed within the framework of the UNFPA-UNICEF Joint Programme on Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting. The study includes an analysis of legal frameworks on FGM in Burkina Faso, the Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Mauritania, Nigeria, Senegal and Sierra Leone. Annemarie is very pleasant to work with, highly professional and dedicated. She went above and beyond to finish the work beyond the time that was calculated for the work and always respected deadlines. She listened well to feedback and took it into account without question, while not shying away from giving her expert opinion which was very much appreciated. Annemarie is a good communicator and very responsive. She has a solid knowledge of FGM and everything that has to do with legal frameworks, their limitations and implementation. All and all, Annemarie is very professional with a strong work ethic and great personality.

Meike Madeleine Keldenich
Technical Specialist FGM/C - United Nations Population Fund West and Central Africa Regional Office

I have known Annemarie close to one year and worked closely with her for two weeks when she visited Ghana as a consultant to the Girls Advocacy Alliance (GAA) Programme. Her in-depth understanding of violence against girls and young women in Africa especially in Senegal increased my curiosity and drew me closer to her to learn more. She became an asset to the Ghana GAA team and the Local Implementing Partners. Her professional and refined approach to group discussions, kept everybody focused and active in fine-tuning the project theory of change, outcomes, outputs and activities. It was through her tireless work ethics, insistence on consistency and time consciousness that the team, was for the first time, able to compile a draft annual report during the annual review meeting. Annemarie was able to facilitate and at the same time capture all relevant points from the discussions. During one of the sessions with her, a colleague tapped me and said: “This woman is a high-flier and she knows how to pull people along with her.” Every session with Annemarie was remarkable. Besides being a joy to work with, Annemarie possesses an outgoing personality that makes her willing to share her thoughts, feelings and experiences with all. In a meeting with a group of girls in one of the project schools, where some girls shared with us abuses they suffered in the past, we were all amazed at Annemarie’s emotional disposition. She exhibited love and concern for their predicaments and quickly shared her personal experience growing up as a girl in a European country. This exposition by her brought smiles on the faces of the girls. I recommend Annemarie Middelburg without reservation. She is a trustworthy individual and I am confident that, she will continue to apply herself diligently every endeavor assigned to her.

Anna N. Nabere
Project Manager Girls Advocacy Alliance - Plan International Ghana

I first sought Dr. Annemarie Middelburg’s collaboration when I was having a hard time to find a professional who could advise me in Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) matters in the United Kingdom. Even though we were in different countries and time zones, Dr. Middelburg’s commitment and professional ethics allowed me to have the best support I could have to assist my client. We discussed the case, my client’s background and the information we would like to have addressed in her expert report; the work she delivered was incredibly well done. She went in deep details of the overall situation of FGM in the country we were working and simultaneously faced all the particularities of the case of my client, preparing a report that was beautifully made and extremely organized, clear, well presented and accurate. I can only thank Dr. Middelburg for her empathy, sense of otherness and commitment to human rights; to deliver a work that was very helpful to prepare the case of this victim of FGM seeking for asylum in the UK and to assist us with brevity and punctuality, enabling us to present all the information in Court when needed. I vividly recommend Dr. Annemarie’s work for the professionalism, completeness and accuracy of her knowledge on human rights.

Gustavo Bussmann Ferreira
Legal Advisor - Farani Taylor Solicitors

Annemarie moderated the final panel of our conference on 'Gender-related vulnerabilities in the EU asylum procedures: Spotlight on FGM’ in Brussels. She was extremely thorough in her preparation of the event and coped with professionalism and grace with last minute changes. The panelists and participants were a mixture of different backgrounds, professions and experiences, including those directly affected by FGM; Annemarie was sensitive to the challenges that this presented and adapted the discussion accordingly. She also had the difficult task of summarizing and rounding up the conference at the end of the day. She did this succinctly, with energy and clarity and was really able to highlight our key recommendations and demands. I would recommend Annemarie as a speaker, moderator or panelist very highly. Aside from her professionalism, commitment and astute strategic thinking, she is a real pleasure to work with.

Natalie Kontoulis
Advocacy and Communications Officer - End FGM European Network

I have had the pleasure to work with Annemarie at the University of Amsterdam, where we have been the supervisors of the thesis in Law & Economics written by students in the Philosophy, Politics, Law, and Economics (PPLE) program. Annemarie has always been very organized and she prepared each class and meeting in details. I was impressed by her skills as lecturer and supervisor. She has in-depth knowledge of International Law and of the methodologies for conducting legal analysis. Her comments and suggestions to students were always accurate and right to the point. In fact, one of her students won the prize as best master thesis in the whole PPLE. Most important, she is a passionate lecturer, respected and estimated by the students, and a wonderful colleague. I believe Annemarie will have a terrific impact on the organizations she will join in her professional life.

Dr. Marco Fabbri
Research Fellow - University of Amsterdam

I have worked with Annemarie on a number of occasions. Among others, I was one of her supervisors during her PhD research and we conducted a study for the European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) entitled Female Genital Mutilation in the European Union and Croatia (2013). I appreciate Annemarie especially for her keen interest to learn, her determination and ability to deliver high quality work within strict deadlines. Her professionality is a real asset for anyone working with her.

Dr. Els Leye
Associate Professor, International Centre for Reproductive Health - Ghent University

I attended the lectures of Annemarie during the course Public International Law at the University of Amsterdam. She has extensive knowledge of international law, especially in the field of human rights. Over the weeks, it became very clear to me how passionate she is about human rights in general and the practice Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C) in particular. Because of her enthusiasm and fascinating stories about her experiences in the field, I developed a great interest in international human rights law. I decided to write my Bachelor Thesis about FGM/C and I asked Annemarie to co-supervise my thesis. Both the lectures and feedback sessions with Annemarie were not only very informative, but also a lot of fun. She has the ability to make people feel at ease and comfortable. It was always a pleasure working with her. She is helpful and always prepared to share her knowledge. For instance, when I needed advice about my thesis, she gave me a push in the right direction, but at the same time gave me the chance to find and process information my own way. During the lectures, Annemarie encouraged students to travel the world and explained the added value of studying abroad. When she said that, I started to seriously think about an exchange program. As a result, I will go to Madrid for six months this year! All in all, Annemarie is very positive and someone you can really count on.

Ruby Groeneveld
Student - University of Amsterdam

I had the pleasure of having Annemarie as a lecturer for the course Public International Law for my Bachelor’s degree at the University of Amsterdam. Up until then I always enjoyed studying law, but never really knew which field of law I would have liked to pursue. That all changed after attending the classes Annemarie gave. With her help I developed a strong interest and passion for Public International Law. With vivid examples from her impressive experience in the field she always knew how to fascinate me and bring the subject to live. Annemarie is skilled in teaching you to be accurate and pay attention to details while not losing eye for the bigger picture. She really motivates you to work hard and gives good advice as for how to plan your academic career. I enjoyed the experience of having Annemarie as a lecturer immensely and I hope to have her as a lecturer again or maybe one day work with her.

Frans-Joseph Biermans
Student - University of Amsterdam

Annemarie and I taught together the course ‘Public International Law’ at PPLE in the academic years 2016/2017 and 2017/2018. PPLE is a three-year interdisciplinary Bachelor's programme (combining Politics, Psychology, Law and Economics) at the University of Amsterdam. Only a limited number of highly motivated and talented students are accepted to the challenging programme. First of all, Annemarie very knowledgeable, but she is also a hardworking and a solution-oriented colleague. She is a key player for the organization and implementation of the course. In the second place, it was great to share with Annemarie my research ideas as well as future career plans: Annemarie gave me great and valuable advice! It was a pleasure working with her and I look forward to teaching the course with her next year again.

Dr. Marta Bo
Researcher - T.M.C. Asser Institute

Annemarie supervised the writing of my Bachelor’s thesis on the Me Too movement and human rights. The title of my thesis was 'The Me Too Movement and Human Rights: How can Human Rights Instruments Contribute to the Objectives of the Movement?' She provided invaluable expertise on women’s rights and international human rights instruments applicable to sexual violence against women. Annemarie readily made time to meet with me and provided constructive feedback to incorporate into my thesis drafts. Her input and advice really helped to give direction and form to the final product. Annemarie provided positive and encouraging guidance and a wealth of knowledge relevant to women’s rights and gender-based violence.

Cailyn Prins
Student - University of Amsterdam

Annemarie was my internship and Master’s thesis supervisor. She is a great professional, truly passionate about her Ph.D. research on Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting and fully devoted to her work. Not only was I impressed by the love she showed towards her work as well as extraordinary supervisory skills, but also, due to her guidance and constructive feedback, she motivated me to perform well while working with her. Annemarie is a hard-working person, with great communications skills, knowing how to talk to people regardless of their background, has a strong personality and hands-on attitude. On a personal level, Annemarie has a warm and kind personality. I highly recommend her as a professional and knowledgeable researcher as well as a cheerful and amazing person.

Alina Balta
PhD Candidate - Tilburg University

Annemarie joined us as a lecturer at the department of Public International Law and European Law at the University of Amsterdam. She taught the course ‘International Public Law’ (in Dutch Internationaal Publiekrecht) during the academic year 2016-2017. She is friendly as she is knowledgable, and contributed a great deal to the team. With her dedication, enthusiasm and relevant field experience, she inspired our students. As the coordinator of the course, I surely look forward to working with her again.

Dr. Antoinette Hildering
Assistant Professor - University of Amsterdam

Annemarie was my tutor in my “Public International Law” course which is a part of the PPLE Law Major at the University of Amsterdam. She was amazing at guiding us trough the content and motivating each and every student to challenge ourselves and engage with the material. To be honest, it was a tough course which covered a lot of information, but Annemarie was able to point out important details to keep in mind while still demonstrating how these matter for the bigger picture. Furthermore, Annemarie’s vast experience and examples motivated me to work hard, and her impressive stories actually inspired me to consider Public International Law as a part of my future academic career. Annemarie was so passionate about the topic and she successfully emphasized the importance and significance of this subject. Apart from teaching this course, Annemarie also took the time to discuss several questions I had and my future career plans while having a cup of coffee, which I appreciated greatly!

Viktoria Bergert
Student - University of Amsterdam

We invited Annemarie to chair and moderate an informative evening about Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting, organized by the Women's Group of Amnesty Nijmegen. Annemarie gave an insightful presentation about her fieldwork in Senegal and she clearly presented to the audience how complex the problem of FGM/C is. She nicely introduced the other speakers and she led the discussion with the audience perfectly. Annemarie closed the evening with a striking recapitulative speech. Tribute to the way Annemarie has led this evening.

Hélène van der Sijp
President - Women's Group Amnesty Nijmegen