Maayan Niezna is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Modern Slavery and Human Rights at the Bonavero Institute of Human Rights, and a Fellow of the Modern Slavery Policy and Evidence Centre, funded by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). Her socio-legal research focuses on trafficking for labour exploitation, the regulation of labour migration, and the rights of non-citizens. She holds PhD in Law from Kent Law School, MSc in Human Rights from the London School of Economics, and LL.B in Law and Philosophy from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She is a Visiting Research Fellow at TraffLab: Labor Perspective to Human Trafficking (ERC project).
Her PhD (supported by the Modern Law Review Scholarship) concerned the elements that constitute trafficking for labour exploitation (including slavery and forced labour): the concepts and ideas that explain what is trafficking for labour exploitation, and the policies that result in trafficking. The latter were discussed through an empirical study of developments in policy areas that made migrant and Palestinian workers in Israel vulnerable to exploitation.
Prior to her doctoral studies, she led the legal work on trafficking at the Hotline for Refugees and Migrants-Israel, worked on issues concerning the freedom of movement of Palestinian resident as a lawyer at Gisha-Legal Center for Freedom of Movement, and worked on issues related to trafficking at the Office of the National Anti-trafficking Coordinator, Israeli Ministry of Justice, and UNHCR. Her work on trafficking and slavery has been cited by NGOs, policymakers, and Israel’s Supreme Court, and has been referred to in parliamentary committee meetings and national media.