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Posthumous doctorate Thijmen Nuninga: 'Right, duty, remedy or The promise of the rule'

On Thursday 22 September 2022, the posthumous PhD ceremony will be held of Thijmen Nuninga who passed away February this year. His doctoral thesis had already been approved at that time.

Thijmen Nuninga started his PhD research in 2016 at the Institute of Private Law. In January this year, he started working as a lawyer.

In the doctoral thesis, Nuninga provides practical guidance on how to determine which private law remedy is appropriate in a specific case and how it should be applied. In the modern approach to liability law, there is a disconnect between rights and legal action.  Much attention is paid to the existence of rights and duties, but less to the remedy attached to a breach of a right or the breach of a duty. As a result, it may be unclear in advance which remedy is appropriate in a given case. Moreover, it is not always easy to explain in retrospect why precisely this remedy had to be imposed. This creates legal uncertainty and legal inequality, putting effective legal protection under pressure.

'Right, duty, remedy' sets out how a relational approach to remedy law fits with applicable law and discusses how it helps to enhance legal certainty and realise substantive law claims. The author explains why a remedy should not be considered in isolation. The remedy should flow from the rule to which it is attached and the scope of that rule. In other words, the rule carries the promise of an appropriate remedy.

The thesis is relevant for various audiences within the legal field. Lawyers can use it to strengthen their legal tools, by getting a better understanding of the application and interpretation of private law remedies. Judges will find tools to arrive at a just and insightful reasoned judgment with regard to legal claims in private law disputes. For legal scholars, this work provides insights into the fundamentals of delictual remedial law, with clear legal-theoretical and comparative considerations and comprehensive analyses of lower court case law in this area.

The ceremony is on Thursday 22 September at 16.15 and can be watched via een livestream.


The commercial edition of the doctoral thesis of Thijmen Nuninga is published by Wolters Kluwer in the series Recht en Praktijk.

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