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Profile: Nicolas Kyriakides

Man standing at podium at Cyprus Forum

Nicolas Kyriakides (2011, MSt in Law and DPhil in Law)

Nicolas Kyriakides completed his DPhil at Oxford under the supervision of Adrian Zuckerman and is now Partner at Harris Kyriakides, a leading law firm in Cyprus. He has been a Visiting Researcher at Harvard Law School with Professor David Rosenberg and lectures regularly at the University of Nicosia. He also wrote Cyprus Banking Law with Nomiki Vivliothiki. He was recently awarded the European Citizen’s Prize.

Why did you choose to study an MSt in Law and DPhil in Law at Univ?
My elder brother Michael completed his MSt eight years before I went to Oxford (2003 and 2011 respectively). I remember him talking very highly about it, so I also wanted to apply. (Actually, the then Master Sir Ivor Crewe allowed me to take a photo of the college register with my brother’s entry!). Then, I fell in love with Oxford, the Law Faculty, my supervisor Professor Adrian Zuckerman, and the topic of my research, so I decided to apply for the DPhil.

Football team wearing Univ colours How do you think you changed from the first moment you stepped through Univ’s doors to your graduation?
Studying at such a great university and college, I felt the responsibility to do something useful in my life and this thought is still on my mind. Also, I think that reading so many books on law and philosophy and interacting with so many spiritual people changed me as a person and made me less superficial.

Have you faced any challenges in your life that you are happy to share here? If so, how did you cope with them?
I am a second-generation lawyer and I come from Cyprus, which is a country with a decent standard of living. Thus, I can’t say that I have faced many challenges in my academic and professional life compared to others. But I always felt that I wanted to do something out of the ordinary and sometimes this is something difficult to cope with!

What is your proudest achievement (personal or professional)?
Founding an NGO called Oxygono (in Oxford actually with two classmates in 2012), which tries to improve the policymaking process in Cyprus and make it more scientific, transparent and participatory. Our main projects are the Cyprus Forum, the largest policymaking conference in Cyprus, and Nomoplatform, the first and only parliamentary observatory in Cyprus.

Also, my little girl, Marilia!

Do you have any words of wisdom to share with current students?
“A man’s character is his fate” by the Greek philosopher Heraclitus. Hard work, kindness, and honesty are always the right answer.

Describe Univ in three words.
Spiritual earthly paradise.

Published: 3 January 2023

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