Independent Geographic Consultant and Educator

Robert W. Smith

Dr. Smith advises on all aspects of ocean policies and planning and developing strategies for exploring and exploiting offshore resources. He provides geographic and technical expertise for maritime boundary negotiations and arbitrations, offshore jurisdictional claims, and sovereignty disputes. His clients include the Philippines, Thailand, Bangladesh, Colombia, Turkey, British Gas (now Shell), and several international law firms. Previously, he worked for almost 31 years as a geographer for the U.S. Department of State where he was the U.S. government expert on maritime boundary and jurisdictional issues. He was responsible for the technical and geographical aspects of negotiating U.S. bilateral maritime boundaries and establishing U.S. claims to marine jurisdiction. Dr. Smith oversaw and was the principle author of the State Department’s Limits in the Seas studies in which analyses is given on the state practice of maritime claims and boundaries. He is the co-author of three books on excessive maritime claims, the author of a book on the exclusive economic zone, and was the co-editor for three volumes of the American Society of International Law’s International Maritime Boundaries series. He has extensive teaching experience having taught at Georgetown University, the Rhodes Academy, Semester at Sea (F10, May12, F12, SU14, and the spring 2013 Enrichment voyage) and George Mason University. He has been an expert witness in both U.S. Supreme Court and international court cases. He received his PhD at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.