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  • Author: Bruno Simma
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: European Journal of International Law
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: The ESIL Conference at which this article was originally presented as the Keynote Speech was devoted to the topic of “ International Law in a Heterogeneous World ” . The article attempts to demonstrate that heterogeneity does not exclude the universality of international law, as long as the law retains – and further develops – its capacity to accommodate an ever larger measure of such heterogeneity. After developing three different conceptions, or levels, of what the term ' universality ' of international law is intended to capture, the article focuses on international rules, (particularly judicial) mechanisms, and international institutions which serve the purpose of reconciling heterogeneous values and expectations by means of international law. The article links a critical evaluation of these ways and means with the different notions of universality by inquiring how they cope with the principal challenges faced by these notions. In so doing, it engages a number of topics which have become immensely popular in contemporary international legal writing, here conceived as challenges to universality: the so-called ' fragmentation ' of international law; in close connection with this first buzzword the challenges posed by what is called the ' proliferation ' of international courts and tribunals; and, finally, certain recent problems faced by individuals who find themselves at the fault lines of emerging multi-level international governance. The article concludes that these challenges have not prevented international law from forming a (by and large coherent) legal system. Most concerns about the dangers of fragmentation appear overstated. As for the ' proliferation ' of international judicial institutions, the debate on fragmentation has made international judges even more aware of the responsibility they bear for a coherent construction of international law. They have managed to develop a set of tools for coping with the undesirable results of both phenomena. Despite some evidence of competition among international courts for ' institutional hegemony ' , such competition has hitherto been marked by a sense of responsibility on the part of all concerned. Thus, from the viewpoint of a practitioner, the universality of international law is alive and well; there is no need to force the law into the Procrustean bed of ' constitutionalization ' .
  • Topic: International Affairs
  • Author: Roda Mushkat
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: European Journal of International Law
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: In a series of influential articles, Ryan Goodman and Derek Jinks, professors at Harvard Law School and University of Texas Law School respectively, have proposed a distinctly sociological approach to analysing compliance with human rights law. The conceptual framework which they have constructed for this purpose is grounded in the notion of acculturation, a well-established social process whose dynamics in the international legal context has been examined by the two authors in a multi-step fashion, featuring a progression from general model-building to elaborate responses to specific issues raised by critics. Their latest contribution on the subject falls predominantly into the latter category. It is entitled ' Incomplete Internationalization and Compliance with Human Rights Law ' and has been recently published in the European Journal of International Law .
  • Topic: Human Rights, International Affairs
  • Political Geography: Europe, Texas
  • Author: Kirsten Schmalenbach
  • Publication Date: 04-2009
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: European Journal of International Law
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: The monograph at hand is based upon the author's PhD thesis, successfully defended before the University of Amsterdam in 2005. Although it is not indicated by the main title, International Institutional Veil in Public International Law, the book deals mainly with the many different aspects of the law of treaties concluded between, or with, international organizations. The choice of the title is a result of the author presenting the topic with a broad foundation, in the context of which she thoroughly scrutinizes the specific nature of international organizations and their independence in dependence.
  • Topic: International Organization, International Affairs
  • Author: Robert Howse
  • Publication Date: 11-2008
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: European Journal of International Law
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: Together with developments in international criminal justice and humanitarian law, the human rights revolution in international law has had a profound structural effect on the international legal order as a whole; we are today only beginning to discern and to digest this effect, to say nothing of the broader consequences for global politics. New actors have been empowered in the international legal system (not only individuals but various kinds of non-state collectivities as well); conceptions of responsibility have been altered; classic notions, such as territorial sovereignty and recognition of statehood, have sometimes subtly and sometimes radically been reshaped or adapted; and the balance of institutional actors charged with interpreting and applying inter-national law has shifted towards courts and tribunals (a major theme of Petersmann) and away from diplomats and their ministers.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Sovereignty, International Affairs