Dr. Rik Torfs


Rik Torfs was born on October 16, 1956. After studying classics at secondary school, he obtained a Master of Law in 1979, a Master of Notarial Studies in 1980, and a Master of Canon Law in 1982, all at KU Leuven. He completed his Ph.D. in Canon Law in 1987. He then began a career as a Professor of Canon Law at KU Leuven. He chaired the Faculty of Canon Law for several terms. He was also a Visiting Professor at several universities, including the Universities of Paris (F), Strasburg (F), Stellenbosch (SA), and Nijmegen (NL).

He was elected a member of the Belgian Parliament, Senator for the Christian Democrat Party (2010- 2013). In 2013, he resigned to take part in the elections for the office of Vice-chancellor of KU Leuven. He served KU Leuven as Vice-Chancellor from 2013 to 2017.

He has authored more than 350 scholarly pieces but has also published books with a wide readership. He has given presentations and organized international conferences and colloquia in more than forty countries across five continents.

As a writer, he is a recognized opinion maker. He is a well-known media figure, in part thanks to his many opinion pieces in the Flemish and international press and his appearances on TV and radio.