Martin Palouš

Martin Palouš is a Senior Fellow at Florida International University’s School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA) and Director of the Václav Havel Program for Human Rights and Democracy.

Born in Prague on October 14, 1950, Palouš studied Natural Science, Philosophy and International Law. In 1974, he received a Doctorate in Natural Sciences and went on to earn a Higher Doctorate in Political Science/Philosophy at Charles University (Prague), where he became an Associate Professor. He also completed his PhD in International Law in 2007 at Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic, with a dissertation entitled "Freedom of Expression in the European Court of Human Rights".

One of the first signatories of Charter 77, Palouš served as spokesman for this dissident human rights group. A founding member of the Civic Forum (November 1989), he was elected to the Czechoslovakian Federal Assembly in 1990 and became a member of its Foreign Affairs Committee. He joined the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Czechoslovakia as adviser to Minister Dienstbier and was Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs from October 1990 to October 1992. From October 1998 through September 2001, he served as Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of the newly formed Czech Republic, and was then asked by President Václav Havel to travel to Washington, D.C. as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Czech Republic to the United States from September 2002 to November 2005. Dr. Palouš was then designated as Ambassador of the Czech Republic to the United Nations, where he served in New York from 2006 through 2010. As of 2011, he became Director of the Václav Havel Program for Human Rights and Democracy at FIU. He also serves as President of the Václav Havel Library Foundation and President of the International Platform for Human Rights in Cuba.

Palouš has engaged in rich academic praxis for more than 25 years. He has lectured at many universities both in the Czech Republic and in the world (particularly in the United States), and has authored numerous publications in the areas of political philosophy, contemporary history, international relations and international law.

See Dr. Palouš's Publications on Our Publications and Resources Page