Dr Firew Tiba





Faculty of Business and Law


BL Law


Melbourne Burwood Campus


Master of Laws, Kyushu University, 2003
Doctor of Philosophy, University of Hong Kong, 2008


+61 3 924 68276


Firew Tiba is a lecturer and Co-Director of Deakin Juris Doctor (JD) program. He joined Deakin University in 2012. Before coming to Deakin he was a Lecturer in Law at Waikato University in New Zealand. He was formerly a Research Officer and Post-doctoral Fellow with the Faculty of Law of the University of Hong Kong where he worked on Hong Kong Bill of Rights Project, The Hong Kong Basic  Law Project and a project on possible uses of technology to offer professional legal education. In 2006, he was a visiting Researcher at Max Planck Institute of Comparative and Public International Law in Heidelberg. He was also a recipient of DAAD Scholarship (2001); Monbukagakusho scholarship (Japanese Government) (2003-2004); University of Hong Kong Studentship (2004-2008) and University of Hong Kong Foundation Scholarship for Outstanding Overseas Research Students (2004).

Firew obtained his PhD in International Dispute Resolution from the University of Hong Kong in 2008. His PhD thesis on “Multiplicity of International Courts and Tribunals: Implications for Coherent Application of Public International Law” was nominated by the Faculty of Law for the University’s best thesis award. He has master of laws degrees in international economic and business law from Kyushu University (2004) and Human Rights Law from University of Pretoria in South Africa (2001). He obtained his Bachelor of Laws degree with distinction from Addis Ababa University (1999). He holds a number short term certificates in his field from the University of Pretoria, Leiden University, Utrecht University, Xiamen Academy of International Law.  

Firew’s research interests are in cross cutting issues in international dispute resolution, cross-border business transactions and international criminal law.  He has published in reputable journals as the International Journal of Criminal Justice, Chicago Journal of International Law, Cardozo Journal of Conflict Resolution, European Journal of Law and Technology Willamette Journal of Dispute Resolution and Gonzaga Journal of International Law. His book chapters are published by publishers such as Oxford University Press, Intersentia, Sweet and Maxwell of Thomson Reuters; Pretoria University Law Press. Some of his publications could be found at his SSRN author page: http://ssrn.com/author=1064136 . Follow this link for his Google Scholar citations. 

Firew has presented several papers at international and national academic conferences. Firew welcomes PhD supervision queries in his area of research and interests. Firew has experience in coaching and advising student teams seeking to participate in international and national moot court competitions and is keen to assist teams seeking his input.

Firew’s teaching and unit chair roles at Deakin include the units of Business Law; Contract Law; Introduction to Commercial Law; International Commercial Law and Corporate Law. 

Read more on Firew's profile

Research interests

International dispute resolution, international economic and business law and international criminal law.

Units taught

Commercial and Corporations Law (MLC707), International Commercial Law (MLM740), Business Law (MLC101), Contract Law (MLL111), Corporate Law (MLL221) and Introduction to Commercial Law (MLM720)

Knowledge areas

International dispute resolution, international criminal law, international human rights law, international economic and business law and commercial law


• Firew Kebede Tiba, 'Complementarity and Prosecution of Sitting Heads of States by the International Criminal Court', Inaugural Australian International Criminal Law Workshop, University of Melbourne, Thursday 12 and Friday 13 September 2013 (by invitation)

• Firew Kebede Tiba, 'Consumer finance dispute resolution: Examination of New Zealand’s experience in light of international best practices', International Conference on Consumer Law, National University of Malaysia, School of Law,  21 September 2011

• Firew Kebede Tiba, 'Ethnic Federalism and Human Rights: The Ethiopian Experience', International Conference on Recognition and Politics of Identity and Inclusion in the 21st Century: Managing Diversity in  Plural Societies, The University of Hong Kong, 28-29 April 2011

• Firew Kebede Tiba, 'Mass Trials and Mode of Criminal Responsibility in International Criminal Trials: The Case of Ethiopia', International Conference on Untold Stories: Hidden Histories of War Crimes Trials, Melbourne Law School, Australia, 14-16 October 2010

• Wilson Chow, Julienne Jen and Firew Kebede Tiba, 'Training the Next Generation of Hong Kong Lawyers: New Wine in a New Bottle', Inaugural East Asian Law and Society Conference, The University of Hong Kong, 5-6 February 2010

• Wilson Chow, Julienne Jen and Firew Kebede Tiba, 'PCLL Curriculum Review at HKU: An Evolution or a Revolution or an Evolution?', Learning in Law 2010 Conference: Perspectives on Progress, United Kingdom Centre for Legal Education, Warwick University, 28-30 January 2010

• Firew Kebede Tiba, Civil Societies and International Criminal Law, ARCA-Net Conference, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, December 2007

Professional activities

Editor, Africa Journal of Comparative Constitutional Law published by JUTA Law of South Africa and hosted by the Kenya School of Law in Nairobi, Kenya.


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Regional international criminal courts: an idea whose time has come?

Dr Firew Tiba

(2016), Vol. 17, pp. 521-549, Cardozo journal of conflict resolution, New York, N.Y., C1


Freedom of choice of occupation and academic freedom in Hong Kong

Dr Firew Tiba

(2015), pp. 909-936, Law of the Hong Kong Constitution, Hong Kong, B1


The prosecution of sitting Heads of States by the International Criminal Court

Dr Firew Tiba

(2014), Vol. 21, pp. 134-154, Williamette journal of international law and dispute resolution, Salem, Oregon, C1


Professional legal education reviews : too many 'what's, too few 'how's

Wilson Wai Shun Chow, Dr Firew Tiba

(2013), Vol. 4, pp. 1-26, European journal of law and technology, Belfast, Ireland, C1


Judges and rule of law in times of political change or transition

Suzannah Linton, Dr Firew Tiba

(2013), pp. 173-229, Global community yearbook of international law and jurisprudence: global trends: law, policy & justice essays in honour of Professor Giuliana Ziccardi Capaldo, Oxford , England, B1


Mass trials and modes of criminal responsibility for international crimes: the case of Ethiopia

Dr Firew Tiba

(2013), pp. 306-326, Hidden histories of war crimes trials, Oxford, England, B1


Evidence and witnesses

Dr Firew Tiba

(2012), pp. 134-140, Annotated leading cases of international criminal tribunals - volume XXIX : the international criminal tribunal for the former Yugoslavia 2006, Cambridge, England, B1


The Trial of Mengistu and Other Derg Members for Genocide, Torture and Summary Executions in Ethiopia

Dr Firew Tiba

(2011), pp. 163-184, Prosecuting International Crimes in Africa, Pretoria, South Africa, B1-1


Freedom of choice of occupation and academic freedom

Dr Firew Tiba

(2011), pp. 765-786, Law of the Hong Kong Constitution, Hong Kong, B1-1


The international judge in an age of multiple international courts and tribunals

Suzannah Linton, Dr Firew Tiba

(2009), Vol. 9, pp. 407-470, Chicago journal of international law, Chicago, USA, C1-1


The Mengistu genocide trial in Ethiopia

Dr Firew Tiba

(2007), Vol. 5, pp. 513-528, Journal of international criminal justice, Oxford, England, C1-1


Ralph Henham : Punishment and Process in International Criminal Trials

Dr Firew Tiba

(2007), Vol. 2, pp. 75-77, Asian Journal of Criminology, Dordrecht , Germany, C1-1


What caused the multiplicity of international courts and tribunals?

Dr Firew Tiba

(2006), Vol. 10, pp. 202-226, Gonzaga Journal of International Law, Spokane, Washington, USA, C1-1