Dermot Groome

Dermot Groome

Professor of Law
Harvey A. Feldman Distinguished Faculty Scholar

Phone: 717-241-3512

J.D., Boston College Law School 
B.A., Queen’s College, City University of New York

Groome on Teaching

I have spent most of my legal career as a prosecutor, investigating and prosecuting domestic and international crimes. I am passionate about justice and helping the most vulnerable obtain it. No matter what course I teach, I try to imbue my students with that passion.  I teach each of my courses (criminal law, international criminal law, human rights and advocacy) with an appreciation of the important role each area of law plays in ensuring justice for the victims of crimes and human rights abuses.

I also believe that good legal education is a transformative process. When students finish their education they should not simply be more knowledgeable but should be intrinsically different people. They should be people with integrity, good judgment, they should be responsible and committed to the public service aspects of the legal profession. I endeavour to impart this to students in everything I teach.

Groome on Scholarship

My research and writing is very much informed by my work as an international criminal prosecutor. I try to write with an authentic voice that strikes a balance between theory and praxis. I am interested in exploring recent developments in international criminal law and discovering new ways and contexts to apply criminal law’s principle of accountability.

Over the last few years I have done significant research into the “right to truth,” an emerging human right with both individual and collective dimensions. I consider it to be one of the most important developments in the law of human rights. I enjoy the intellectual and conceptual challenges of working with a right whose precise definition and application is still evolving. 

Groome on Service

The rule of law is an important concept in our modern world. Nearly every aspect of our lives, every relationship we have with another person or entity is affected by a complex system of laws. We, as attorneys, have an important obligation to help ensure that the laws that impact the lives of people are just, fair, and effective. I am part of several initiatives related to my particular fields of expertise. I also provide advice to both states and non-governmental organizations on matters related to international law and human rights. I am currently a member of an expert group advising State Parties to the International Criminal Court on how to make the court more effective.

I also believe that we, as lawyers, have an obligation to assist those without a voice in securing justice. To this end, I also advise the families of victims who believe that they have been denied justice by the criminal justice system.

Groome on Community

I really enjoy working with young lawyers. I consider the opportunity to shape future attorneys to be one of the most important and fulfilling aspects of my work. I enjoy hearing what attracts aspiring lawyers to the profession and what they hope to achieve during their careers. I consider it an honor to be able to play some part in the development of young lawyers and advocates.

Groome's Publications

“Expert Initiative on Promoting Effectiveness at the International Criminal Court”

Groome, D. (2014) Evidences in Cases of Mass Criminality. Featured in: I. Bantekas & E. Mylonaki (Eds.), Criminological Approaches to International Criminal Law (pp. 117-158). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Handbook of Human Rights Investigation, 1st ed., Human Rights Press, 2001; 2nd ed. Humanitarian Law Centre (in conjunction with OSCE)