Niloufer Selvadurai

Director of Research and Innovation, Macquarie Law School, Program Director, Legal and Ethics of Cyber, Macquarie Cyber Security Hub, Professor


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Personal profile


Professor Niloufer Selvadurai is a technology law scholar at Macquarie University. Niloufer researches and teaches on the effective governance of emerging and evolving technologies. She explores how technological change undermines the efficacy of laws, especially in the fields of digital finance, smart contracts, cyber security, data privacy and IP, and how legal frameworks can be reimagined to strengthen explainability and trust. A feature of her work is interdisciplinary collaborations with computing, engineering and finance. She is presently Director of Research and Innovation, Macquarie Law School and Program Director, Legal and Ethics of Cyber, Macquarie Cyber Security Hub. Formerly, she was Deputy Dean, Operations and Planning, of the Macquarie Law School. In 2022, Niloufer was the recipient of the Australian Legal Education Award for Excellence in Graduate Supervision from the Australian Law Academic Association (ALAA), and in 2021 the Executive Dean's Award for Research Engagement.

Qualifications include a BA LLB (First Class Hons) from the University of Sydney, a PhD from Macquarie University and admission as a solicitor in the Supreme Court of New South Wales.

Niloufer is an academic partner of the Digital Finance CRC that has been awarded government and industry funding over a 10-year period to develop a commercial, technological and regulatory framework for the digitisation of real-world assets. 

Together with Professor Dali Kaafar (lead CI), Professor Shlomo Berkovsky, Dr Ian Wood, A/Professor Mark Dras, she is a CI on an Australian Research Council NIS Discovery Research Grant on 'Fighting Global Phone Scams with Conversational AI'.

Professor Joshua Fairfield, Washington & Lee University, Virginia, USA, and Niloufer are the recipients of an University of California (UCLA) JOLT 2021-2022 Honorarium for their work on 'Governing the Interface between Natural and Formal Language in Smart Contracts'. The article can be accessed at

Niloufer is presently undertaking a research project on blockchain smart contracts, supported by a 2022-2023 Honorarium from Washington & Lee University, Virginia, USA.

Other present research projects include a Fintech Governance project funded by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and participation in the SIENNA (Stakeholder informed ethics for new technologies with high socio-economic and human rights impact), European Union H2020 research and innovation programme, University of Twente, Netherlands. Former multinstitutional research projects include an AI governance project with Qatar, and information technology projects with Malaysia, Vietnam, Belgium, Greece and the United Kingdom. Niloufer has advised government and industry on issues relating to digital privacy, cybercrime and telecommunications law and has been co-author of Australia's submission to the World Congress of AIPPI on multiple occasions. Niloufer teaches technology law and intellectual property law, and is a member of the Macquarie University Human Research Ethics Committees (Medical Sciences).

Prior to joining Macquarie, Niloufer practised as a solicitor in the media, technology and telecommunications group at Ashurst and worked at Allens. Niloufer is the Telecommunications Editor of the Australian Journal of Competition and Consumer Law and was the Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Technology Policy Law, 2009-2021.

See further - ‘Speaking with Professor Niloufer Selvadurai’ in (2020) (1) The Brief 27-29 at Interview in the Brief 

Recent videos - 

CPI Talks with Prof Niloufer Selvadurai - Data interoperability and portability law, Melbourne University Law School

Link - Interview on data governance

Link - Panel 3 discussion - Big data

Should AI-generated inventions be patentable?

AI, Health and Human Rights, panel discussion with Professor Enrico Coiera and others

AI, Health and Human Rights Webinar - YouTube

Codes, conflicts of laws and digital jurisdiction, 'Code is law: Blockchain smart contracts'

The regulation of emerging tecnologies in the energy sector, CENRIT

CENRIT website

Research interests

Niloufer's present research centres on the following themes:

(a) Digital finance and smart contracts - Focussing on AI and blockchain smart contracts governance. Recent works include 'Governing the Interface between Natural and Formal Language in Smart Contracts,' in (2022) 27(2) UCLA Journal of Law and Technology 79-118, with Joshua Fairfield; 'The governance of AI technologies in the Asia Pacific region' (2020) 24(2) Journal of Internet Law, with E Karim, Wolters Kluwer USA; 'A hard fork in the road: Designing  a regulatory framework for public blockchain platforms' (2021) Information and Communications Technology Law, forthcoming with Steve Penzo; 'The relevance of internet architecture to law,' ANU Journal of Law and Technology, forthcoming with Joshua Gacutan; and a research project on 'The difficulty of discerning intention in blockchain smart contracts' supported by an Honorarium from Washington & Lee University, Virginia, USA.

(b) Explainable and trustworthy AI - Recent work includes ‘A right to explanation for AI generated decisions’ in (2020) 28(3) International Journal of Law and Information Technology 193, with J Gacutan, Oxford University Press; and ‘The right to information’ (2021) 16(1) Asian Journal of Comparative Law 61-83, with Uyen Lu, Cambridge University Press.

(c) AI and IP - Niloufer was lead author on Australia’s 2019 Submission to the AIPPI World Congress on ‘AI and Copyright’. Recent works include an edited book, with N Koutras, Recreating creativity, reinventing inventiveness: AI-enabled works and IP, Routledge, 2022, and a co-authored article ‘Reconsidering creativity’ in (2020) 17 Journal of Intellectual Law and Practice 489, Oxford University Press.

Data Society Research Stream -

Research student supervision

Supervision of PhD, Masters of Research and LLB Honours Candidates: Information technology law, digital intellectual property law, AI governance, telecommunications law, biotechnology and digital competition law.

Recent PhD Completions (Principal Supervisor)

Niloufer has supervised over 20 PhD students to completion. Recent PhD completions include:

  • Atiq Rahim (International - Bangladesh): Copyright law. “Designing Digital Copyright Laws to Properly Balance Proprietary and Public Interests.” Completed 2020.
  • Lam Uyen (International – Vietnam): Information technology law. “A Comparative Analysis of an Individual's Right to Information in Vietnam and Australia.” Completed 2019.
  • Jennifer Farrell (Australia): Internet law. “Enhancing Access to Justice in Australian Courts Using Web 2.0 Applications.” Completed 2018.
  • Jingyi Li (Cotutelle candidate with Shandong University, China): Intellectual Property Law. “Reconciling Intellectual Property Rights and Human Rights.” Completed. 2018.

Recent MRes and MPhil Completions (Principal Supervisor)

  • Nipun Agarwal (MPhil): International commercial law.Applying Negotiation Theory to Increase the Effectiveness of International Trade Dispute Resolutions.” Completed 2021.
  • Asal Ozgoli (MRes): Internet law. “The adequacy of Australian laws in protecting consumers from misleading influencer advertising on social media: a review and the need for reform.” Completed 2021.
  • Suman Poder (MRes): Internet law.  “The Regulation of Open Banking in Australia.” Completed 2020.
  • Vanessa Ho (MRes): Internet law. “The Merits of Forum Shopping in Appropriate Circumstances in International Intellectual Property Litigation.” Completed 2020.


Law and Technology - LAWS5029 (undergraduate) and LAWS8068 (postgraduate)

Intellectual Property Law - LAWS5023 (undergraduate) and LAWS8024 (postgraduate)

Education/Academic qualification

Law, PhD, Macquarie University

Award Date: 22 May 2006

Law, BA LLB (First Class Hons), University of Sydney

Admitted as Solicitor and Barrister of the Supreme Court of New South Wales


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