Dr. Francine HUG is a Visiting Fellow at East-West Center, where her research focuses on international economic law in the Indo-Pacific and China’s legal system at the cybersecurity, energy, labor, environment, and Indigenous rights nexus. Prior to academia, Francine served as Senior Economic Officer at the Embassy of Switzerland to China, Mongolia, and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, where she negotiated treaties and provided ministerial advice on trade and energy laws.

Highest Level of Education

Doctorate and post-doctoral

Current Job/Study field

Academia / research


Switzerland Flag SwitzerlandGermany Flag Germany

Current employer

East-West Center

Work experience

  • Visiting Scholar
    East-West Center, Research Program - Full-time From May 2022 to Present

    Interdisciplinary research on energy and technology security concerns regarding Chinese State-owned investments in South Pacific Island Nations and the BRI at large, including impact on Indigenous rights, customary land rights, Indigenous data governance, cybersecurity, and mining laws; rnAcademic Advisor on China and Climate Change Law in the Pacific, especially regarding mining projects in Melanesia and Vanuatu’s submission to the International Court of Justice for an Advisory Opinion.

  • Senior Economic Officer
    Embassy of Switzerland to China, Mongolia, and DPRK - Full-time From February 2011 to September 2015

    Active involvement in bilateral Free Trade Agreement (FTA) negotiations between Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) and Chinese Ministries; Monitoring and follow-up negotiations on FTA implementation;rnNegotiations and revisions (Chinese version) of bilateral Agreements i.e. Double-taxation; Investment; Transport; Energy; Environment; Social Security; Pharmaceutical, Chemical and Cosmetics; Medical Devices; Clean technology projects in Sino-Swiss Ecological Industrial Park.

  • Project Officer
    CCEFIRO - Foro Salud - Full-time From January 2016 to June 2016

    Awareness-raising workshops in regional municipalities on HIV-prevention; Proposal of health policy amendments in current legislation for improved rights and fairer access to health infrastructure for people living with AIDS, particularly from vulnerable communities and including Indigenous and LGBTQIA+ rights; Regular meetings with Members of Parliament and relevant Ministries in view of the presidential elections; Coordination with pharmaceutical companies for better access to HIV-medication.

  • Liaison Officer
    Organisation of Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), Switzerland - Full-time From December 2014 to December 2014

    In charge of high-level delegation representing the Republic of Korea at the Ministerial Council; Coordination with OSCE Taskforce and Protocol Service of Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs.

  • Lecturer and Project Officer
    University Jean-Price Mars, Haiti Cosmos Foundation - Full-time From February 2012 to February 2012

    Teaching of English module with focus on Macroeconomics and Political Economy at University Jean-Price Mars and Ecole Polytechnique du Centre; rnProject assistance in remote dispensaries and laboratory for medicinal plants;rnFundraising and reporting for the NGO Haiti Cosmos Foundation and Swiss Association of Friends of Sister Emmanuelle.

  • Project Manager
    Blue Mountain Coffee Farms Ltd. - Full-time From November 2009 to February 2010

    Reporting on sustainable development for smallholder farming communities; Assistance in irrigation, soil protection, stove construction and hydro-electric power device projects; rnSetting-up of the NGO Kilimanjaro Project Initiative Charitable Association; rnCooperation on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) precursors, and micro-financing with German Development Agency (GIZ), local and international NGOs, as well as business partners like Starbucks.


  • PhD in Law
    National University of Singapore From August 2016 to May 2022
  • MA in International Law
    School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London From September 2008 to September 2009
  • BA in Chinese Studies and Economics
    Beijing Language and Culture University From August 2004 to January 2008

Area of expertise

Climate policy Coal Competition Law Emissions Trading Systems (ETS) Energy consumers' rights Energy Law Energy policy Environmental policy Environmental Regulation Institutional/public affairs


  • French
  • Chinese
  • Traditional Chinese
  • Simplified Chinese
  • German
  • Swiss German
  • Italian
  • Spanish


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