Dr Maris Köpcke Tinturé, Tutorial Fellow at Worcester College and Lecturer at Brasenose College, has won the European Award for Legal Theory. This award is assigned, once every two or three years, to the author of the best doctoral thesis submitted anywhere in Europe, in the area of legal theory and philosophy of law. The competition is judged by a jury with members representing the various sub-disciplines within legal theory and philosophy of law, from several different countries. Dr Köpcke's doctoral thesis (University College, Oxford, 2009) studies the moral function of legal validity. It argues that the mechanism of legal validity enables a diverse population to coordinate action around shared standards and that, for this reason, it is morally necessary that legal validity does not (primarily) turn on moral considerations. As part of the award, Dr Köpcke's doctoral thesis will be published by Hart Publishing Ltd of Oxford and she will be appointed as a lecturer at the European Academy of Legal Theory, in charge of a seminar for a period of three academic years.

The award ceremony took place on 18 August 2011, at the International Association for Philosophy of Law and Social Philosophy World Congress. Dr Köpcke is pictured with some members of the jury.