Dr. Marks is the François-Xavier Bagnoud Professor of Health and Human Rights at the Harvard School of Public Health and Director of the François-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights. His current research is a multi-country study on the right to development, funded by the Government of the Netherlands. He teaches courses on development and human rights and on health, human rights and the international system. Until July 1999, he was Director of the United Nations Studies Program and Co-Director of the Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs Concentration at the School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA) of Columbia University, where he taught courses on international law, the United Nations, preventive diplomacy, human rights and economic development. He holds academic degrees in law and international studies from Stanford University, the Universities of Paris, Strasbourg, Besançon and Nice, as well as the University of Damascus. His principal fields are international law and politics, international health, development, and human rights.
He has been a grantee of the Program on Peace and International Cooperation of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and a Visiting Fellow at the Center of International Studies of the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University. He has also taught at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School, the University of Phnom Penh Faculty of Law; Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law; the New School for Social Research; Rutgers University School of Law, and various other universities in the US and abroad. He has been a consultant or advisor to the MacArthur and Asia foundations and to international agencies and organizations, including UNDP and the High Commissioner for Human Rights. He serves on the board of directors of numerous organizations and is active in several leading professional associations, including the American Society of International Law and the American Public Health Association. He is President of the American Committee for the International Service for Human Rights-USA and represents the International Secretariat of that organization at the United Nations.
In 1992-93, he served as head of human rights education, training and information for the United Nations Transitional Authority in Cambodia (UNTAC). Previously, he was Assistant to the Independent Jurist, United Nations Mission for the Referendum in the Western Sahara; Director of the Program in International Law and Human Rights at Cardozo School of Law, program officer for international human rights at the Ford Foundation; senior program specialist in the Division of Human Rights and Peace of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO in Paris); and senior staff at the International Institute of Human Rights, in Strasbourg.
His publications relate to various aspects of international law and organizations, public health, peacekeeping, development and human rights. In 1999 he co-edited (with Burns Weston) and contributed to The Future of International Human Rights (Transnational Publishers, 1999).His latest publications include Tying Prometheus Down: The International Law of Human Genetic Manipulation, Chicago Journal of International Law, vol. 3, No. 1, Spring 2002, pp. 119-140, and Human Rights Assumptions of Restrictive and Permissive Approaches to Human Reproductive Cloning, Health and Human Rights, vol. 6, No. 1, pp. 82-102.