The University of Tartu has conferred the degree of Honorary Doctor of Law on Professor Astrid Stadler for her outstanding achievements in law and years of successful cooperation with the University of Tartu School of Law in forming the new generation of legal scholars.
Astrid Stadler was born on 4 September 1959 in Ulm (Germany). In 1984, she graduated from the Faculty of Law of the University of Konstanz, Germany, and took her second examination in law in Baden-Württemberg in the same year. She defended her doctorate in law (doctor iuris) in 1988, and her habilitation treatise was formally accepted by the University of Freiburg in 1993.
In 1990 and 1992, Astrid Stadler was a visiting scholar at the University of California, Berkeley, and was elected a full professor at the University of Konstanz in 1993. Since 1994, Stadler has been holding the Chair of Private Law, Civil Procedure, Private International Law and Comparative Law at the University of Konstanz. From 2011–2015 she also held a part-time chair at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam. Professor Stadler has been the dean of the Faculty of Law at the University of Konstanz and the vice rector for teaching at the University of Konstanz.
Professor Stadler has authored a number of scientific publications, mainly on collective redress and international civil proceedings, contract and property law. She is the author of several monographs, research articles, textbooks and commentaries on the law. In recent years, Astrid Stadler has focused her scientific interest mainly on collective redress, being one of Europe's leading legal scholars in the field. Since the beginning of the 2000s, she has advocated in favour of a European specific class action type of collective redress.
She has worked as a consultant for the German and Austrian Ministries of Justice and built an international network of legal experts in collective redress. Since 2013, the research of her team of PhD students has been repeatedly funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). Based on intensive comparative research, she has written and co-edited books with leading experts in the UK and France. Within the European Law Institute (ELI) and International Institute for the Unification of Private Law (UNIDROIT) project on Model Rules of European Civil Procedure (2014–2020), she was head of the Working Group drafting rules on collective redress focusing on litigation funding, particularly third-party funding.
Professor Stadler's contribution to European law-making has been significant, in particular through participation in international expert groups of the European Commission and the joint project of the ELI and UNIDROIT "From Transnational Principles to European Rules of Civil Procedure – Model Rules of European Civil Procedure". Shortly after the adoption of the rules, she formed a team of civil procedural experts from all over Europe to write the first commentary on the rules, which will be published in 2022. Her participation in the councils formed in the government, her activities in professional law associations and editorial boards of law journals should not go unmentioned.
Professor Stadler's cooperation with the University of Tartu Faculty of Law began in the early 2000s, when she initiated a project of joint doctoral seminars together with Professor Rainer Hausmann and Paul Varul. The seminars have proven to be a very important and valuable opportunity for young researchers to get the experience of international research cooperation. Articles have been published based on many presentations done at the seminars, and more than a dozen doctoral students have successfully defended their theses.
Astrid Stadler is a friendly, supportive and cooperative colleague whose consistent interest in Estonia and the Estonian law and jurisprudence, as well as in the activities of the University of Tartu in general, has contributed to closer cooperation between Konstanz and the University of Tartu.