As of October 2014, Yousra Benfquih is a PhD fellow of FWO Vlaanderen (Research Foundation Flanders) in the research group Law and Development of the Faculty of Law of the University of Antwerp. In the preceding academic year, she gained significant teaching experience as the teaching assistant of prof. dr. Wouter Vandenhole in the field of both Fundamental Rights and Liberties and Legal Reasoning and was a fellow at the Human Rights and Social Affairs Division of the Delegation of the European Union to the United Nations in New York.
Yousra graduated (Master of Laws) magna cum laude and top of her class at the University of Antwerp (with a study exchange at the Université Catholique de Louvain, UCL) and summa cum laude in her subsequent European Master’s Programme in Human Rights and Democratisation (E.MA) at the European Inter-University Centre for Human Rights and Democratisation (EIUC) in Venice (with a research exchange at the University of Utrecht, the Netherlands). During her training, she participated in multiple moot court competitions, interned in different law firms, and was awarded several prizes and scholarships, including by the Vocatio and Rotary Foundation.
Her research is entitled: 'God in school? A legal inquiry into the right to reasonable accommodation of religion and belief in educational institutions’ (Dutch title: ‘God op de schoolbank: een juridische analyse van het recht op redelijke aanpassing op grond van godsdienst en levensbeschouwing in het onderwijs’). In an interdisciplinary manner, the research aims to develop a human rights framework to guide the debate on the active encounter between public and private educational institutions and religious diversity of students.
As a researcher, she is mainly attentive to the interrelation between law, diversity and education, with her research interests lying in non-discrimination and equality law, religious freedom, children’s rights law, education law, and inclusive education. Although due to medical developments she was forced to temporarily interrupt her research activities in December 2015, she has recently picked up her mandate anew.