Foundation for the Advancement of and Education about the Rule of law (FAER)

With the founding of FAER  - in Dutch: Stichting ter Bevordering van en Educatie over de Rechtstaat (SBER) - on 12 November 2009, the real work could begin! This foundation sprung from ideas and ambitions that had been nurtured for over two years. The founders and board members, Tom Zwart, Sophie Borst, and Laura Henderson, are excited to be moving forward in organizing activities and projects that will serve the advancement of and education about the rule of law. This page will shortly describe FAER’s mission, as well as some of our activities and our contact information.


FAER’s mission is to facilitate the advancement of and education about the rule of law. Our mission has both an internal and external aspect, meaning that we concentrate on the rule of law within the Netherlands as well as abroad.

FAER acts as a platform for its members to act collectively in addressing the many different elements of the rule of law. Collective action is the most effective and efficient way to deal with these issues because their interconnected and interdependent nature calls for coordinated action on a large scale. 

FAER is a not-for profit organization.


Educational exchange with China:

FAER is currently engaged in negotiations with Chinese universities regarding a study abroad program. FAER will raise money for and facilitate the study of Chinese students in the Netherlands. The Netherlands is a good example of a state with a functioning rule of law and this program will provide Chinese students the opportunity to learn more about this concept.

  •  Conferences and Seminars:

FAER organizes activities geared at informing students, academics, and practitioners about the state of the rule of law, both in the Netherlands and abroad. These conferences and seminars also aim to stimulate debate about the issues discussed. The first conference was held, in cooperation with the Netherlands School of Human Rights Research, on December 9th. This conference focused on the state of human rights in China and included contributions by Professors Peter Baehr and Tom Zwart.

  •  Cooperation with other relevant organizations:

FAER is committed to cooperation with organizations which share our dedication to the rule of law. The conference mentioned above, which we are holding in cooperation with the Netherlands School of Human Rights Research is a prime example. Additionally, FAER is seeking contact with law-student organizations in Utrecht and hopes to collaborate with these organizations in informational and fundraising activities.  

  • Advocacy:

FAER finds it necessary to take an active role in defending the rule of law when state or private actors endanger its integrity. FAER’s first line of action will always be to discuss an issue of concern with the relevant actor. We hope to make these actors aware of the consequences of their actions for the rule of law. We will propose different and better policies and advocate the adoption of these policies. However, if discussion does not prove to be fruitful, FAER will continue its defense of the rule of law via legal avenues.  


We welcome all your correspondence at the following address:

Stichting ter Bevordering van en Educatie over de Rechtstaat

Drift 15, 3512 BR Utrecht, The Netherlands

Tel: 03 0253 8033

E-mail: Stichting.Rechtstaat at

The FAER board-members are:

Professor Tom Zwart (Chair)

Sophie Borst (Treasurer)

Laura Henderson (Secretary)