Asser was appointed the Dutch representative on the International Commission on the Freedom of Navigation on the Rhine in 1860.
In 1862 he became professor of commercial and private international law at the University of Amsterdam. At the same time he was a successful barrister.
In 1868, together with others, he began the Revue de droit international et de législation comparée. Five years later he helped found the Institut de Droit international.
In 1891 he persuaded the government to convene The Hague Conference for the unification of private law, which later became a permanent institution and was responsible for the 1902-1905 Hague treaties on family law.
In 1893 he resigned from his professorship, retired from the practice of law, and became a member of the Dutch Privy Council.
Asser was a delegate to the Hague Peace Conferences of 1899 and 1907 and helped organize the Hague Permanent Court of Arbitration, of which he was appointed a member in 1900 and where he arbitrated international problems such as the dispute between the United States and Russia over fishing rights in the Bering Straits.
He was active in the Jewish community of Amsterdam and wrote numerous books on law.
Born April, 1838
Died July 29, 1913