Prof. Dr. Jens Scherpe

Professor of Comparative Law, University of Cambridge

Languages spoken: German

A professor of Comparative Law at the University of Cambridge, Jens joined QEB as an Academic Door Tenant in 2011.


Jens is a Professor of Comparative Law at the University of Cambridge, specialising in Family Law and Comparative Family Law, and has held visiting positions at universities in Hong Kong, Belgium, Australia, England, Germany, New Zealand, Italy and Spain. He joined QEB as an Academic Door Tenant in 2011.

One of his key areas of expertise is matrimonial finance, particularly cases involving an international dimension and/or marital agreements. He has acted as consultant in cases in England, Germany, Hong Kong and Belgium, including Radmacher v Granatino [2009] EWCA Civ 649, Z v Z (No 2) [2011] EWHC 2878 (Fam) and SA v SPH [2011] HKCFI 1649 (HCMC 1/2011) and CACV 99/2012.

Jens is fluent in German and Danish. Before taking up his position in Cambridge he was Head of the Department of the Law of the Nordic Countries at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law in Hamburg/Germany.

His major publications include the books ‘Marital Agreements and Private Autonomy in Comparative Perspective’ (editor, Hart Publishing 2012); ‘The Future of Family Property in Europe’ (edited with Katharina Boele-Woelki and Jo Miles, Intersentia, 2011); ‘The Legal Status of Transsexual and Transgender Persons’(editor, Intersentia 2015) a four volume book set on ‘European Family Law’ (editor, Edward Elgar, 2016) including a monograph on ‘The Present and Future of European Family Law’; ‘The Future of Registered Partnerships – Family Recognition Beyond Marriage?’ (edited with Andy Hayward, Intersentia 2017); ‘The Legal Status of Intersex Persons’ (edited with Anatol Dutta and Tobias Helms, Intersentia 2018); and ‘Eastern and Western Perspectives on Surrogacy‘(edited with Claire Fenton-Glynn and Terry Kaan, Intersentia 2019).

  • Fully qualified as a German lawyer (1. State Exam, Berlin 1998; 2. State Exam, Hamburg 2002)
  • University of Hamburg (PhD, 2002)
  • Somerville College/University of Oxford (MJur, 2005)
  • Gonville and Caius College/University of Cambridge (MA, 2010)
  • PhD by Special Regulations 2014, University of Cambridge
  • Professor of Comparative Law, University of Cambridge
  • Director of International Strategy and Partnerships, Faculty of Law, University of Cambridge
  • Fellow and Director of Studies, College Lecturer and Tutor, Gonville and Caius College/Cambridge
  • Honorary Professor, University of Aalborg/Denmark
  • Cheng Yu Tung Visiting Professor in Law, University of Hong Kong
  • Honorary Fellow, St. John’s College/University of Hong Kong
  • Associate Fellow of the International Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (IAML)
  • Member of the Wissenschaftliche Vereinigung für Familienrecht e.V.
  • Member of Council, European Law Institute
  • Editor, International Journal for Law, Policy and the Family

Born 1971 in Heidelberg/Germany. Married and lives in Cambridge together with his wife and daughter. Without much success supports Liverpool FC and the Australian Rules Football team St.Kilda FC.

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