Jeff Handmaker joined as Senior Lecturer the ISS (International Institute of Social Studies) in The Hague in 2007. Before that, he was lecturer in Law (Human Rights and Development) at the ISS.
He studied law in England (1992: LLB-Newcastle and 1994: LLM, with Merit, School of Oriental and African Studies, London) and was called to the English bar in 1995. He obtained a PhD in the sociology of law at Utrecht University with a thesis on "Advocating for Accountability: Civic-State Interactions to Protect Refugees in South Africa".
From the early 1990s, off and on until early 2000, he worked for the South African organisation Lawyers for Human Rights (LHR), and for seven years after that as a freelance consultant, trainer and researcher, based in The Hague. Since 1999, he has published scholarly work, in academic and other journals, as well as four books and one special issue of the “South African Journal of Human Rights”.