Author Archive for
An Hertogen

Book Symposium: The Electronic Silk Road by Anupam Chander

by An Hertogen

This week, we are pleased to host a symposium on The Electronic Silk Road (Yale University Press) by Anupam Chander (UC Davis). The publisher’s description is:

On the ancient Silk Road, treasure-laden caravans made their arduous way through deserts and mountain passes, establishing trade between Asia and the civilizations of Europe and the Mediterranean. Today’s electronic Silk Roads ferry information across continents, enabling individuals and corporations anywhere to provide or receive services without obtaining a visa. But the legal infrastructure for such trade is yet rudimentary and uncertain. If an event in cyberspace occurs at once everywhere and nowhere, what law applies? How can consumers be protected when engaging with companies across the world? In this accessible book, cyber-law expert Anupam Chander provides the first thorough discussion of the law that relates to global Internet commerce. Addressing up-to-the-minute examples, such as Google’s struggles with China, the Pirate Bay’s skirmishes with Hollywood, and the outsourcing of services to India, the author insightfully analyzes the difficulties of regulating Internet trade. Chander then lays out a framework for future policies, showing how countries can dismantle barriers while still protecting consumer interests.

Commentators will be Michael Birnhack (Tel Aviv University), Paul Stephan (Virginia), Molly Land (UConn), Mira Burri (World Trade Institute), Joost Pauwelyn (Graduate Institute) and Jake Colvin (National Foreign Trade Council), and hopefully also you as our readers!


Events and Announcements: October 20, 2013

by An Hertogen

Calls for Papers

  • The Journal of World Investment and Trade (JWIT) is under new editorial responsibility starting with the first issue of 2014. It operates as a double-blind peer-reviewed journal and focuses on the law relating to foreign investment relations in a broad sense, including the law of investment treaties, investor-State dispute settlement, domestic law relating to foreign investment, and relevant trade law aspects, such as services, public procurement, trade-related investment measures, and intellectual property, both under the WTO and PTAs. JWIT publishes articles, notes, case comments, and book reviews, and welcomes proposals for special issues in its fields of interest. For further information, including the full editorial board and instructions to authors, please visit the journal’s website. Inquiries and submissions may be sent here.
  • The eighth annual International Graduate Legal Research Conference (IGLRC) will be held on April 14-15, 2014 at King’s College London.The committee welcomes abstracts considering all aspects of legal scholarship. Abstracts of maximum 300 words need to be submitted online by December 6, 2013. More information is here.
  • The Journal of Law Teachers of India (JOLT-I) is inviting Articles/Notes and Comments from faculty members on any contemporary legal issue, for its next issue which is expected to be published in April 2014. An abstract of approx. 1000 words should be sent latest by October 31, 2013 with the final paper due by December 31, 2013. More information is available here.
  • Trade, Law and Development (TL&D), a biannual, student-run, academic journal published by National Law University, Jodhpur, India, is calling for papers for a special issue on Trade and Climate Change. The deadline for submissions is January 31, 2014. More information is here.
  • The Younger Comparativists Committee of the American Society of Comparative Law is pleased to invite submissions for its third annual conference, to be held on April 4-5, 2014, at Lewis & Clark Law School in Portland, Oregon.  An abstract of no more than 750 words should be e-mailed no later than November 1, 2013. Authors of the submissions selected for the conference will be notified no later than December 20, 2013. A prize will be awarded for the best paper submitted by a graduate student.  To be considered for the award, in addition to submitting an abstract by the above deadline, graduate students whose abstracts are accepted for the conference must also submit their papers in their final form by January 31, 2014, with the following subject line:  “Submission for Graduate Student Prize.”  Papers received after January 31, 2014, will not be considered for the award. Final papers by faculty members—as well as by graduate students who do not wish to be considered for the Graduate Student Prize—will be due by email no later than March 1, 2014. More information is here. Any questions can be directed to Ozan Varol. 


Last week’s events and announcements can be found here. If you would like to post an announcement on Opinio Juris, please contact us.

Weekend Roundup: October 12-18, 2013

by An Hertogen

This week on Opinio Juris, Tomer Broude completed his trilogy on behavioral international law. Also continuing from last week was Carsten Stahn’s rejoinder to Harold Koh on intervention and the use of force, and Jens Iverson’s guest post highlighting the underlying commitments of Professors Stahn and Koh.

We also published guests posts by Faiza Patel on the OPCW and by Adam Steinman on this week’s SCOTUS oral argument in Daimler v Bauman.

Of our regular bloggers, Deborah disagreed with Jack Goldsmith on the rarity of capture operations overseas, but outlined other concerns with this approach to counterterrorism. Julian pointed out how China’s understanding of the peaceful settlement of disputes excludes international adjudication. Despite finding much to like in the PTC’s decision in al-Senussi, Kevin was troubled by the inconsistency with the Gaddafi decision on the right to counsel. He also was not impressed by the PTC invoking Libya’s security situation.

Finally, Jessica wrapped up the news and listed events and announcements.

Many thanks to our guest contributors and have a nice weekend!

Events and Announcements: October 6, 2013

by An Hertogen


  • The Centre for Asian Legal Studies at the Faculty of Law, National University of Singapore, will be hosting the conference — Trials for International Crimes in Asia — on October 17-18, 2013. This will examine the legal issues arising from the tribunals convened in Asia to deal with crimes of international import – namely, aggression, war crimes, genocide, and crimes against humanity. It will consider both tribunals that have been established on the initiative of Asian governments and tribunals mounted in Asia at the behest of non-Asian governments or international organisations. In keeping with the legal theme, it will lay particular stress on the different modes of liability developed within these courts’ respective jurisdictions – among them, joint criminal enterprise, command responsibility, complicity, and defences against them. For the programme and registration details, please visit the conference webpage.

Calls for Papers

  • The Indonesian Journal of International and Comparative Law is looking for manuscripts for their inaugural volume which will be published in 2014. More information is here.
  • A group of students at Brandeis University, with support from the International Center for Ethics, Justice and Public Life are launching a new journal to explore questions of international peace and justice from an interdisciplinary perspective. For our inaugural issue, they are asking for abstracts that address the question: What is global justice, how does it work, and why is it important? They are looking for abstracts from fields as varied as psychology, anthropology, sociology, political science, economics, and history, as well as other disciplines. They are primarily seeking abstracts (300-500 words) from undergraduates and early-career graduate  students, but will accept a submission from anyone. Please email your submissions or any questions to Anastasia Austin and David Benger by Friday, November 8th.


Last week’s events and announcements can be found here. If you would like to post an announcement on Opinio Juris, please contact us.

Weekend Roundup: September 28 – October 4, 2013

by An Hertogen

This week on Opinio Juris, we organized a book symposium on Investment Law in International Law: Integrationist Perspectives, edited by Dr Freya Baetens. If you enjoyed the symposium, don’t miss CUP’s offer of a 20% discount for our readers. More details are here. Freya introduced the goals of the book, followed by comments by Laurence Boisson de Chazournes.

On Tuesday, Nicolas Hachez and Jan Wouters assessed the need for an alternative to the arbitral model to preserve the public interest. Their reply to Tullio Treves’ comments is here. Vid Prislan addressed how non-investment obligations could be taken into account in investment arbitration, with comments by Kathleen Claussen.

Gleider Hernandez explored the interaction between investment law and the law of international armed conflict, which Bill Burke-White welcomed as a great opening for further research in this area. Philipp Ambach also dealt with the interaction between these two fields of international law in his post on the international criminal responsibility of transnational corporate actors doing business in zones of armed conflict, on which Judge Howard Morrison commented.

Anastasios Gourgourinis discussed the relationship between investment law and WTO law in the minimum standard of treatment of aliens, to which Anne van Aaken responded, followed by Anastasios’ reply. Mary Footer also reflected on the relationship between investment law and trade law. In response, Gabrielle Marceau discussed what dispute settlement in trade and investment systems can learn from each other. Mary’s reply is here.

On the last day, Elisabeth Tuerk and Wolfgang Alschner discussed how international investment treaties could contribute to sustainable development, with comments by Andrea Bjorklund, and Moshe Hirsch looked at the interaction between investment agreements and human rights treaties from a sociological perspective. Andreas Ziegler’s comments rounded up the symposium.

In our regular posts, Julian wondered when the Dutch government would file an ITLOS action after Russia charged Greenpeace activists with piracyKevin asked whether the ICC had learned anything from Melinda Taylor’s detention in Libya and whether The Guardian‘s legal affairs correspondent had read Perisic. He also continued last week’s inter-blog discussion with Ryan Goodman. The inter-blog discussion with JustSecurity continued with Kevin’s four thoughts on Harold Koh’s defense of unilateral humanitarian intervention.

Ken followed up on a post by Roger last week on jurisprudence post-Kiobel, by discussing his recent essay on the resurgence of the traditional bases of jurisdiction in the Alien Tort Statute. A guest post by John Dehn also revisited an earlier post, discussing an article by Sarah Cleveland and Bill Dodge on the Offenses Clause.

Finally, Jessica provided her weekly news wrap and listed events and announcements, while Julian posted a special announcement on the 2013 International Law Weekend.

Many thanks to our guest contributors and have a nice weekend!

Book Symposium on Investment Law in International Law: Integrationist Perspectives

by An Hertogen

This week we are hosting a symposium on Investment Law Within International Law: Integrationist Perspectives, a brand new volume edited by Dr. Freya Baetens (Leiden – Law) and published by Cambridge University Press.

Here is the abstract:

Developments within various sub-fields of international law influence international investment law, but changes in investment law also have an impact on the evolution of other fields within international law. With contributions from leading scholars and practitioners, they examine specific links between investment law and other sub-fields of international law such as the law on armed conflict, human rights, sustainable development, trade, development and EU law. In particular, this book scrutinizes how concepts, principles and rules developed in the context of such sub-fields could inform the content of investment law. Solutions aimed at resolving problems in other settings may provide instructive examples for addressing current problems in the field of investment law, and vice versa. The underlying question is whether key sub-fields of public international law, notably international investment law, are open to cross-fertilisation, or, whether they are evolving further into self-contained regimes.

Freya will introduce the book later today, followed by a general comment by Professor Laurence Boisson de Chazournes (Geneva). From tomorrow until the end of the week, the discussion will focus on specific chapters dealing with the intersection between investment law and international armed conflict, human rights, trade, sustainable development and much more!

Cambridge University Press is offering our readers who wish to purchase the book a 20% discount until the end of October. To claim your discount, click here and enter the code “BaetensOJ2013″.

We look forward to what promises to be an interesting discussion and hope that you will join the debate in the comments.

Weekend Roundup: September 21-27, 2013

by An Hertogen

This week on Opinio Juris, Kevin welcomed Just Security to the blogosphere, but regretted the absence of a comments section.  Not one to be easily stopped, he went for inter-blog commentary instead with his response to Ryan Goodman’s post on whether or not the US is at war with al-Qaeda. He also criticized the Special Court for Sierra Leone’s Appeals Chamber for its incoherent — and selective — analysis of custom in the Taylor  case.

The annual General Assembly debate started this week, and as is often the case the question of attendance by not-so-squeaky-clean heads of state popped up, this time around Sudan’s President Bashir plans to attend the meeting, as discussed by Julian and John Cerone. As Kevin pointed out, Bashir changed his mind in the end.

Ken and Deborah analysed the draft Security Council resolution on Syria’s chemical weapons. Further on Syria, Julian discussed a proposed Statute for a Syrian Extraordinary Tribunal for Atrocity Crimes.

Julian also discussed the piracy charges against Greenpeace activists in Russia, and Duncan examined what the object and purpose of the arms trade treaty is.

On the intersection of US domestic law and international law, Duncan asked whether the offenses clause can save Missouri v. Holland, and Roger surveyed lower courts’ decisions post-Kiobel to find that they narrowly interpret the Supreme Court’s ruling.

Finally, Jessica recapped the weekly news on international law and international relations and yours truly listed events and announcements.

Have a nice weekend!

Events and Announcements: September 22, 2013

by An Hertogen

  • The Honourable Justice Dalveer Bhandari – one of India’s most distinguished jurists – will visit York University’s Osgoode Hall Law School from September 22 to 26. RSVP to events can be found here and here.
  • The Vermont Journal of Environmental Law (“VJEL”) at Vermont Law School is pleased to invite you to attend the 2013 Symposium entitled ”Rising Temps and Emerging Threats: The Intersection of Climate Change and National Security in the 21st Century,” held Friday, October 25, 2013 in the Chase Community Center at Vermont Law School. For more information and to register today, click here.

Last week’s events and announcements can be found here. If you would like to post an announcement on Opinio Juris, please contact us.

Book Symposium: Interdisciplinary Perspectives on International Law and International Relations, by Jeffrey Dunoff & Mark Pollack

by An Hertogen

This week, we are hosting a symposium on Interdisciplinary Perspectives on International Law and International Relations: The State of the Art, edited by Jeff Dunoff and Mark Pollack. Jeff and Mark will introduce the book later today, but here is the abstract:

Interdisciplinary Perspectives on International Law and International Relations: The State of the Art brings together the most influential contemporary writers in the fields of international law and international relations to take stock of what we know about the making, interpretation, and enforcement of international law. The contributions to this volume critically explore what recent interdisciplinary work reveals about the design and workings of international institutions, the various roles played by international and domestic courts, and the factors that enhance compliance with international law. The volume also explores how interdisciplinary work has advanced theoretical understandings of the causes and consequences of the increased legalization of international affairs.

Each day, one of the authors will introduce a chapter, followed by a comment. Richard Steinberg will be the first out of the blocks today, with his chapter “Wanted-Dead or Alive: Realism in International Law”, with Ian Hurd as commentator. Tomorrow, Ed Swaine will comment on Larry Helfer‘s chapter on flexibility in international agreements. On Wednesday, Judge Joan Donoghue will provide her perspective on Joost Pauwelyn and Manfred Elsig‘s chapter, and on Thursday, Tim Meyer and Jana von Stein will take the stage. On Friday, Ruti Teitel, Jeff Dunoff and Mark Pollack will wrap up the discussion with a general overview.

We believe we have a great lineup of participants, but would love to complete it with our readers, so please join the discussion in the comments!

Weekend Roundup: September 7-13, 2013

by An Hertogen

This week on Opinio Juris, we continued the discussion on Syria. Geoff Corn started the week by examining President Obama’s options if Congress were not to enact an AUMF, a question that also occupied Peter who yearned for the good old days of unilateral presidential authority to initiated use of force.

When the surprise Russian proposal to put Syria’s chemical weapons under international control put the Congressional vote on hold, Kevin was not convinced that this twist had anything to do with the “credible threat” of a US unilateral strike. Chris asked to what extent the OPCW could be involved in the practical implementation of the proposal. Chris’ post also pointed out how Russia has been more adept than the US at using international law rhetoric, a point he followed up on in a post comparing the international legal rhetoric in Obama’s speech with that in Putin’s NYTimes op-ed.

The possible legal basis for action continued to fascinate us. Kevin wondered what motivated President Obama’s new theory of customary international law, in which the percentage of the world’s population that lives within the territory of a party to a treaty would determine whether the treaty gives rise to custom. Julian linked to a forthcoming article by Andrew Carswell on the possibility of General Assembly action based on the Uniting for Peace resolution. Following a comment by the White House Counsel that a strike would not be prohibited under international law, Julian wanted to know more about the theory on which the White House thinks a strike would be legal under international law. Make sure you catch the comment by Charlie Savage who interviewed Ms Ruemmler.

Despite all these posts on Syria, we are not quite rebranding to Opinio Syriae just yet! (more…)

Weekday News Wrap: Thursday, September 12, 2013

by An Hertogen

Weekday News Wrap: Wednesday, September 11, 2013

by An Hertogen