In an effort to stem the ongoing crises in Sudan, President Bush signed into law on October 13 the Darfur Peace and Accountability Act of 2006 (DPAA) and issued an executive order â€œblocking property of and prohibiting transactions with the Government of Sudan. While not committing the U.S. to any type of intervention, the order does recognize that genocide and crimes against humanity are occurring in Sudan. Furthermore, the order specifically forbids transactions relating to Sudan’s petroleum and petrochemical industries. See http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2006/10/20061013-14.html.
Expansion of NATO’s Operation in Afghanistan
On October 11th, the Secretary General of NATO stated that the organization has broadened its UN-mandated mission to include the East of Afghanistan. Consequently, NATO’s mission will now be extended over the entire country.
For more information, see http://www.nato.int/docu/pr/2006/p06-117e.htm.
France Consents to Jurisdiction of the ICJ in Claim Filed by Djibouti
France has consented to the jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice in a case filed by the Republic of Djibouti. The consent is limited to the current claims filed by the Republic of Djibouti and is made pursuant to Article 38, paragraph 5, of the Rules of Court of the International Court of Justice.
For more information, see the press release of the ICJ here.
The Harvard International Law Journal 2006 Symposium
March 4, 2006
Harvard Law School
The Harvard International Law Journal hosted its most recent Symposium at Harvard Law School on March 6, 2006. For more information about the Symposium, including the event schedule and audio downloads of Symposium sessions, please see below.
Symposium Statement of Purpose
As forces such as technology and economic integration continue to make the world a smaller place, different legal cultures and regimes are constantly drawn into contact with one another. Agents of globalization have eroded the provinciality of law. Scholars across legal disciplines seeking to ascertain the state of the law in their field must now account for an increasing fluidity triggered by this erosion. Changes brought upon by inter-jurisdictional interactions and influences have jumped to the forefront in our understanding of the law.
What are the processes, then, by which these changes occur? What actors and mechanisms are responsible? What is the extent of these changes? Are the levels of change different across the different fields of law? What distinctions might account for these differences? In order to answer these questions, scholars have turned to the subject of “diffusion of law.” They have developed theories to describe the ways in which legal norms and rules spread across different jurisdictions and cultures.
Yet, at the same time as the legal academy seeks to understand this phenomenon, practitioners encounter it everyday in their work. Judges from around the world meet to discuss domestic implementation of environmental laws. Lawyers at the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund engage in legal reform projects in transitional countries. Legislators seek to reform corporate governance for multinational corporations or attempt to combine elements of constitutional democracy with shari’a-based family law. What sort of exchange is going on during these activities? Do academic theories accurately describe the process? What can these practitioners learn from the academic study of diffusion?
This Symposium will bring together scholars and practitioners from across the different fields of law to engage in a self-conscious examination of how law is diffused in this period of globalization. Topics will range from comprehensive theories of diffusion to practical discussions of diffusion in prominent substantive fields.
Schedule of Events
7:30-8:15 Registration and Breakfast — Pound Hall Lobby
8:15-8:45 Welcome and Announcements — Pound Hall 101
Opening Remarks: Elena Kagan (Harvard Law School)
Plenary Session: Theories of Legal Diffusion
Pound Hall 101
1 main presenter and 2 respondents:
Moderator: Duncan Kennedy (Harvard Law School)
Keynote: David Westbrook (University at Buffalo Law School SUNY)
William Twining (University College of London)
Pierre Legrand (Universite Pantheon-Sorbonne, Paris I)
Coffee Break — Pound Hall Lobby
10:45-12:15 Panel Session 1
Panel A: Family Law — Pound Hall 100
Moderator: Janet Halley (Harvard Law School)
Philomila Tsoukala (SJD Candidate, Harvard Law School)
Alan Watson (University of Georgia)
Maria Rosario Marella (University of Perugia)
Kerry Rittich (University of Toronto)
Panel B: Constitutional Law — Pound Hall 102
Moderator: Frank Michelman (Harvard Law School)
Louis Aucoin (Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy)
Dennis Davis (High Court of South Africa)
Sujit Choudhry (University of Toronto)
Lama Abu-Odeh (Georgetown University Law Center)
Lunch Break — Harkness Commons, Second Floor South Room
1:15-2:45 Panel Session 2
Panel A: Private Law — Pound Hall 100
Moderator: Detlev Vagts (Harvard Law School)
Franz Werro (Georgetown University Law Center/University of Fribourg)
Daniela Caruso (Boston University School of Law)
Amr Shalakany (American University in Cairo)
Ugo Mattei (UC Hastings School of Law, Universita’ Degli Studi di Torino)
Panel B: Commerical Law — Pound Hall 102
Moderator: William Alford (Harvard Law School)
Eric Orts (Wharton School of Business)
Werner Ebke (NYU School of Law, University of Heidelberg)
Dan Danielsen (Northeastern University School of Law)
Jeffrey Gordon (Columbia Law School)
Leia Castaneda (SJD Candidate, Harvard Law School)
3:00-4:45 Panel Session 3 (Plenary): Mechanisms of Diffusion
Pound Hall 101
Moderator: Ryan Goodman (Harvard Law School)
Geoffrey Robertson (Sierra Leone Special War Crimes Court, Doughty Street Chambers)
Beth Simmons (Harvard University)
Pieter Bekker (White & Case LLP)
John Ohnesorge (University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Law)
Mark Berlin (Department of Justice Canada)
Elizabeth Andersen (CEELI, American Bar Association)
4:45-5:45 Moderators’ Forum — Pound Hall 101
Moderators report from their panels, discuss connections among substantive areas, and relate these areas to theory.
– Duncan Kennedy
– Detlev Vagts
– Lama Abu-Odeh
– William Alford
– Janet Halley
– Ryan Goodman
5:45-6:00 Conclusion – Pound Hall 101
Audio Downloads (MP3)
1. Plenary Session: Theories of Legal Diffusion
2. Private Law Panel
3. Constitutional Law Panel
4. Commercial Law Panel
5. Family Law Panel
6. Plenary Session: Mechanisms of Legal Diffusion
Map of the Harvard Law School Campus and Area
Title Sponsors: Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP (www.csgh.com), HLS Office of the Dean
Sponsors: Canadian Law Society, East Asian Legal Studies, European Law Research Center, Human Rights Program, International Legal Studies
Book Review: The Dark Sides of Virtue: Reassessing International Humanitarianism
Review of The Dark Sides of Virtue: Reassessing International Humanitarianism. David Kennedy. Princeton University Press: Princeton, N.J., 2004. Pp. 400. $29.95 (cloth).
In The Dark Sides of Virtue: Reassessing International Humanitarianism, Professor David Kennedy asks how the many devoted, resourceful, and well-intentioned individuals who make up the international humanitarian community can so often fail in their most basic goals. According to Kennedy, humanitarianism has many unintended costs stemming from the failure of humanitarians to acknowledge their increasing influence on international policymaking. Government officials and political actors recognize that they ultimately bear responsibility for the consequences of their policies, and, therefore, they pragmatically consider the risks and potential costs of their actions as well as the benefits. Humanitarians have traditionally seen themselves as outsiders with respect to global “rulership” and thus do not feel the same accountability for their actions. In addition, humanitarians often mistakenly assume that because their actions are well-intentioned, they will have only benefits. Kennedy argues that if humanitarians identified with their power in global governance, they would engage in pragmatic cost-benefit analysis more often and avoid many of the dark sides of humanitarianism. Although Kennedy offers few concrete solutions, his broad exploration of the problem through his own experiences is thought provoking and compelling. Kennedy’s goal is to provoke the human rights community to engage in the type of self-critical, pragmatic thinking that might reduce, if not eliminate, the costs of humanitarian action. The result is a challenging, engaging, and complicated book that may well have the desired effect.
Book Review: Defending Interests: Public-Private Partnerships in WTO Litigation
Review of Defending Interests: Public-Private Partnerships in WTO Litigation. Gregory Shaffer. Brookings Institution Press: Washington, D.C., 2003. Pp. 227. $46.95 (cloth).
Much has been written about the increasing legalization of international trade relations, especially the development of the World Trade Organization (“WTO”) Dispute Settlement Mechanism (“DSM”). Professor Gregory Shaffer is at the forefront of this emerging field with his book Defending Interests: Public-Private Partnerships in WTO Litigation, which analyzes the vital role that ad hoc public-private networks play in litigation before the WTO. Shaffer explains that, although only WTO Member States can bring litigation before the WTO, private actors such as corporations and activists play an important role in states’ decisions about which cases to bring. Private actors may also provide states with the information and expertise needed to navigate the dispute settlement proceedings. Shaffer draws on over 100 interviews with critical actors to evaluate the public-private networks and partnerships that drive states’ decisions, primarily examining the networks in the United States and the European Union. Shaffer’s focus is on the actors, but his analysis necessarily includes a brief review of the system itself.
The WTO is unique among international institutions for its legalized dispute settlement with two levels of legal panels and effective enforcement mechanism. Member States can file complaints against any other Member State for actions they believe violate a provision of a WTO agreement. The first step in the procedure is a period of mandatory consultation between the opposing parties. Many disputes are settled at this stage, before actual litigation, due to strategic legal decisions, expediency, or political considerations. If the complaint is not settled during the consultation period, it is referred to a panel of experts for adjudication. The panel’s decision can then be appealed to the Appellate Body, which reviews the case much as an appellate court in the United States would. A decision that survives appellate review is considered final and enforceable. While neither the WTO nor a member country can force a country to change its offending laws or practices, the WTO can authorize the winning country to withdraw trade concessions, effectively imposing sanctions on the loser. The imposition of these sanctions is optional, and, frequently, the states negotiate an alternative settlement instead. This seemingly toothless enforcement mechanism has been remarkably effective in bringing about compliance with WTO agreements.