By the British Institute of International and Comparative Law and the European Society of International Law’s Interest Group on International Legal Theory
Date: Monday 25th April 2016, 14:00-19:00
Venue: British Institute of International and Comparative Law, Charles Clore House, 17 Russell Square, London WC1B 5JP
The 2016 theme reflects an enduring question: the concept of authority in international law. That the international legal system is a legal system properly socalled should by now be an accepted fact: even if not always and universally enforced, the validity of international legal rules functions itself as a reason for compliance, quite independently of the nature or character of the actions to be done. The legitimacy of international law, therefore, derives from more than the consent to be bound.
The conference convenors welcome contributions on the concept of authority in international law, including, but not limited to:
- Theorising about the nature of authority, its relationship to legitimacy and power, and how authority serves to justify the validity of international legal rules;
- The responsibility of international legal officials (judges, legal officers in international organisations, State legal representatives, international legal practitioners) in upholding the international legal system;
- The role of international lawyers in performing functions not necessarily linked to their expertise in international law, in particular political, diplomatic or advisory functions, serving on commissions of inquiry, etc;
- The interaction between international lawyers and experts in other fields, in particular those of a scientific or technical character, and the nature of that interaction in, for example, disputes concerning the environment, cyber, surveillance, etc; and
- The role of amici curiae in international legal proceedings, the risks and rewards of inviting non-legal expertise into the courtroom.