Jana Van der Smissen is an FWO predoctoral researcher (Fundamental Research mandate) in the Faculty of Law at the University of Antwerp since November 2023 under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Dirk Vanheule. She obtained a Master of Laws degree (LL.M) at the University of Antwerp with great distinction (2022). For her Master’s thesis on the post-Brexit regime to return and readmit migrants from the UK to Member States, she studied a semester abroad at the University of Westminster (Erasmus+). Thereafter, she subsequently pursued a master-after-master’s degree in EU law from the Ghent University, which she obtained with great distinction (2023).

Jana's doctoral research concerns the role and legal value of the principle of solidarity in EU Migration and Asylum law. This project strives towards the elaboration, emphasis, conceptualisation, and enforcement of the principle of “EU solidarity” within the context of EU Asylum and Migration law, with focus on the EU’s external border legal set-up. Her personal motivation to pursue a PhD project stems from her passion for EU Asylum and Migration law, her interest in attempting to tackle highly topical and much-discussed challenges and her ambition to contribute to current legal literature.

Areas of Expertise:​

  • EU Law
  • EU Asylum and Migration Law
  • The Principle of Solidarity


ORCID 0009-0003-7669-3691