Author Archives: Alexandra Hofer

Alexandra Hofer

About Alexandra Hofer

Alexandra Hofer is Assistant Professor in Public International Law at Utrecht University School of Law, Department of International and European Law. She is a member of the Utrecht Centre for Regulation and Enforcement in Europe (RENFORCE). Most of her research has focused on the utility of coercive practices, stigmatization and international punishment in enforcing international norms. She has published various articles and book chapters on the effectiveness and legality of the EU and US sanctions on Russia. For more information, see

Defending a Rules-Based International Order? The EU’s Adoption of Restrictive Measures in Response to Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine

The EU has adopted unprecedented “massive and targeted sanctions” in response to Russia’s ‘Special Military Operation’ in Ukraine. For Alexandra Hofer, the sanctioners are demonstrating “unmatched levels of coordination” but are struggling to garner additional international support. If the objective is to change Russia’s behaviour, she argues, the EU and its partners need to be clearer about the sanctions’ objectives. However, Russia (unsurprisingly no doubt) does not perceive the sanctions as legitimate and does not appear to believe the sanctioners are willing to lift the measures.

The post is the third in a series drawing on a RENFORCE expert seminar on the EU’s response to the war in Ukraine, held online on 8th March 2022. Click here to read Salvatore Nicolosi on the EU’s response to the migratory flow from Ukraine, and here for Nathan Meershoek on the EU’s decision to provide weapons to Ukraine. Stay tuned to RENFORCE Blog for further analysis of the EU’s neighbourhood policies and Ukraine, and of coverage of the war in the media.

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