Georgetown Symposium: Corporate Responsibility and the Alien Tort Statute

by Duncan Hollis

Just a quick note to flag an upcoming symposium at Georgetown Law on Corporate Responsibility under the Alien Tort Statute. It’s scheduled for all day March 27, 2012.  Here’s a quick description of the event:

Alien Tort Statute (ATS) litigation has emerged as a focal point in the field of corporate responsibility over the past decade, as foreign plaintiffs alleging violations of international law argue their cases in federal court.  For corporations doing business abroad, liability under this statute is controversial and has the potential for substantial effects on human rights outcomes, environmental effects, foreign investment and human development, and business practices in general. The Supreme Court will hear an Alien Tort Statute case this term, Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum, to consider the question of corporate liability under the statute.

This symposium, sponsored by the Georgetown Journal of International Law and the Center on Transnational Business and the Law, will provide a critical examination of the role of the Alien Tort Statute as it relates to corporate responsibility.  Diverse viewpoints will be well represented. The event will feature a Keynote Address by Donald Francis Donovan, Esq., Debevoise & Plimpton LL.P. and President-elect, American Society of International Law, and discussion from the following panelists: John Bellinger, Bradford Clark, William Casto, Vivian Curran, Bill Dodge, Jonathan Drimmer, Nicole Erb, Jodi Flowers, Jon Hacker, Ziad Haider, Kristin Myles, Bill Reinsch, Kirsten Sjovoll, Beth Stephens.

For more details, see the preliminary schedule here. The symposium is open to the public with registration on a first-come, first served basis.

One Response

  1. Response…
    Thanks, and twenty U.S. Supreme Court cases have already recognized that corporations and companies can have duties and rights under treaty-based and customary international law.  51 Va. J. Int’l L. 977, 978 & n.2, 986-89 (2011), available at
    Hopefully the Supreme Court Justices will follow the twenty cases.

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