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How did Philippe Sands become a QC? watch

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    From reading his profile on wikipedia, as well as at UCL, it seems that Professor Sands was in academia since he passed the BVC in 1984, including for nine years in New York! Nonetheless he was appointed QC in 2003. I don't understand how he managed to do that. I know he practices as a barrister at Matrix, but I thought that in order to take silk you have to pretty much practice full time for 15 years or so, and that you can't become a QC/KC through the academic route. Can anyone help explain how Professor Sands QC managed it?
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    Academics get made honorary QCs
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    Just because somebody holds an academic position, it doesn't mean that that is their main job. It may be that his position in New York involved him only being there a few times a year. The Wikipedia page suggests that there is some overlap between him holding an academic position in New York and academic positions at SOAS and UCL. Often academic positions are fairly symbolic and don't really involve that much teaching, if at all. I also don't think it's that unusual for academics to practise as barristers and vice versa. Certainly I don't think being an academic would stop him from practising as a barrister and the following information seems to suggest that he has quite extensive experience in that area.

    From the Matrix website:

    (Original post by http://www.matrixlaw.co.uk/Members/17/Philippe%20Sands.aspx)
    He has appeared before many international courts, including the European Court of Justice; the International Court of Justice; the World Trade Organisation dispute settlement organs; the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea; and the Special Court for Sierra Leone. He has appeared in arbitrations under the rules of the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes, the Permanent Court of Arbitration and the International Chamber of Commerce; the World Bank Inspection Panel; and the Special Court for Sierra Leone). Philippe also appears regularly before the English courts.
    From the UCL website:

    (Original post by http://www.ucl.ac.uk/laws/academics/profiles/index.shtml?sands)
    As a practicing barrister he has extensive experience litigating cases before the International Court of Justice, the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, the International Center for the Settlement of Investment Disputes, and the European Court of Justice. He frequently advises governments, international organisations, NGOs and the private sector on aspects of international law. In 2003 he was appointed a Queen's Counsel. He has been appointed to lists of arbitrators maintained by ICSID and the PCA.
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    good points tommehr..thanks!
 
 
 
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