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Legitimacy of Unseen Actors in International Adjudication


Part of Studies on International Courts and Tribunals

Freya Baetens, Nathalie Wiles, Philippe Gautier, Bridie Mcasey,Daniel Baker, Gabrielle Marceau, Philipp Ambach, Peter Kempees, Ledi Bianku, Caroline Heeren, Kathleen Claussen, Peter Tzeng, Brian Mcgarry, Josef Ostřanský, Christine Sim, Giacomo Marchisio, Matthew W. Swinehart, Leigh Swigart, Marie-Catherine Petersmann, Tommaso Soave, Guillaume Yvan Jean Gros, Ksenia Polonskaya, Damien Charlotin, Giovanna Maria Frisso, Relja Radović, Marko Divac Öberg, Gillian Cahill, Catherine H. Gibson, Andreas R. Ziegler, Kabre R. Jonathan, Pietro Ortolani, Hannes Lenk
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  • Date Published: August 2019
  • availability: In stock
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108485852

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About the Authors
  • International courts and tribunals differ in their institutional composition and functions, but a shared characteristic is their reliance on the contribution of individuals other than the judicial decision-makers themselves. Such 'unseen actors' may take the form of registrars and legal officers, but also non-lawyers such as translators and scientific experts. Unseen actors are vital to the functioning of international adjudication, exerting varying levels of influence on judicial processes and outcomes. The opaqueness of their roles, combined with the significance of judicial decisions for the parties involved as well as a wider range of stakeholders, raises questions about unseen actors' impact on the legitimacy of international dispute settlement. This book aims to answer such legitimacy questions and identify 'best practices' through a multifaceted enquiry into common connections and patterns in the institutional composition and daily practice of international courts and tribunals.

    • Provides institutional perspectives on the work of registries and secretariats as well as an extensive theoretical framework on different aspects of legitimacy
    • Features a cross-regime examination of five constitutive competences and roles of unseen actors
    • Aims to contribute to understanding how international courts and tribunals can respond to challenges to their legitimacy
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Professor Baetens has brought a fascinating new perspective to the study of international law, looking at the role of unseen actors in various areas. While unseen, these actors are certainly not unimportant for the effective functioning of their respective institutions, and the discharge of their duties benefits parties, States and the rule of law. This volume demonstrates how the many unseen actors contribute to making international adjudication efficient and effective, and is a fresh approach to the study of international adjudication.' Meg Kinnear, Secretary-General, International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes

    'Freya Baetens has put together a stellar collection of contributions highlighting the role of multiple actors involved in the work of international courts and tribunals. Some are visible, others are less visible. Some are directly involved in the litigation process, others are involved in a more indirect manner. This lifting of the stage curtains also places a welcome spotlight on issues concerning legitimacy, neutrality or transparency.' Laurence Boisson de Chazournes, University of Geneva, and Director of the LL.M. in International Dispute Settlement (MIDS)

    'This book not only has the merit of exploring areas of international adjudication to which little attention has been paid to date, it also brings together an impressive array of experiences, information and insights from leading practitioners and researchers on essential aspects of the functioning of international courts and tribunals. By shining a light on the 'unseen actors' in international adjudication, this work is a welcome and ground-breaking contribution to reflection on the role and responsibilities of these auxiliaires de justice in the sound administration of international justice.' Philippe Couvreur, Registrar, International Court Of Justice

    'Finally, the missing piece of the puzzle! There have been numerous books on international judges, prosecutors and the so-called international bar, but rarely has scholarship focused on the unexplored world of the people who keep the lights of international adjudication on. This is a must-read for anyone who wants to understand how international adjudication actually works, in reality.' Cesare Romano, Loyola University Chicago

    'There are few works of international legal scholarship which shine the spotlight on the important 'hinterland' of international legal adjudication – namely, the work of registries, secretariats, appointing authorities and others, which both enables and shapes international adjudication in typically unseen ways. In this volume, an impressive range of experienced and expert authors is marshalled to do just that, and to provide their perspectives on the nature, significance and, indeed, legitimacy of the work of such professionals. This will be of great interest and value to those working on international tribunals across a range of disciplines.' Andrew Lang, Chair in International Law and Global Governance, University of Edinburgh

    'My advice to every practitioner of international law, to every advocate before an international tribunal, and to every State or private party to an international dispute is: read this book! Legitimacy of Unseen Actors in International Adjudication is a fascinating and well-researched study of how courts and tribunals actually function, the importance of court personnel and other behind-the-scenes actors, and the impacts they can have on outcomes. No international advocate, no matter how experienced, should step into court again without having read it.' Paul Reichler, Partner at Foley Hoag LLP

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    Product details

    • Date Published: August 2019
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108485852
    • length: 650 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 156 x 39 mm
    • weight: 1.05kg
    • contains: 7 b/w illus. 5 tables
    • availability: In stock
  • Table of Contents

    1. Unseen actors in international courts and tribunals: challenging the legitimacy of international adjudication Freya Baetens
    Part I. Institutional Perspectives:
    2. The International Court of Justice Nathalie Wiles
    3. The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea Philippe Gautier
    4. International arbitral institutions Bridie Mcasey
    5. The World Trade Organization Daniel Baker and Gabrielle Marceau
    6. The International Criminal Court Philipp Ambach
    7. The European Court of Human Rights Peter Kempees and Ledi Bianku
    8. The Court of Justice of the European Union Caroline Heeren
    Part II. Nomination and Appointment:
    9. Gatekeeper secretariats Kathleen Claussen
    10. Appointing authorities: self-appointment, party appointment and non-appointment Peter Tzeng
    11. Before the law: assessing the process and impact of judicial screening bodies Brian Mcgarry and Josef Ostřanský
    Part III. Case Management and Deference to the Bench:
    12. The essence of adjudication: legitimacy of case managers in international arbitration Christine Sim
    13. Procedural reforms at the Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce: how to ensure that party autonomy will continue serving as a legitimization tool? Giacomo Marchisio
    14. Will an investment court be a better fact-finder? The case of expert evidence Matthew W. Swinehart
    15. Unseen and unsung: language services at the International Criminal Court and their impact on institutional legitimacy Leigh Swigart
    16. Rights and expertise: assessing the managerial approach of the Court of Justice of the European Union to conflict adjudication Marie-Catherine Petersmann
    Part IV. Confidentiality and Transparency:
    17. The politics of invisibility: why are international legal bureaucrats obscured from view? Tommaso Soave
    18. Unseen actors as unseen experts: ghosts in international adjudication Guillaume Yvan Jean Gros
    19. Arbitral institutions' response to perceived legitimacy deficits: promoting diversity, transparency and expedition in investor-state arbitration Ksenia Polonskaya
    20. Identifying the voices of unseen actors in investor-state dispute settlement Damien Charlotin
    Part V. Ethics and Accountability:
    21. Physicians' impact on the legitimacy of the International Criminal Court Giovanna Maria Frisso
    22. Screening powers in investment arbitration: questions of legal change and legitimacy Relja Radović
    23. Legitimacy and the role of legal officers in chambers at international and hybrid criminal courts and tribunals Marko Divac Öberg
    24. The référendaire as an unseen actor: a comparative look at the Court of Justice of the EU, the US Supreme Court and international arbitral tribunals Gillian Cahill
    Part VI. External Influences and Activities:
    25. 'Outside activities' and workload management: as unseen actors (and factors) in international adjudication Catherine H. Gibson
    26. The legitimacy of private lawyers representing states before international tribunals Andreas R. Ziegler and Kabre R. Jonathan
    27. Online reporters and databases: four narratives of their roles in investor-state dispute settlement Pietro Ortolani
    28. Bilateral committees in EU trade and investment agreements: platforms for the reassertion of state control over investor-state adjudication? Hannes Lenk
    Epilogue: an unseen actor speaks.

  • Editor

    Freya Baetens, Universitetet i Oslo
    Freya Baetens is Professor of Public International Law at the PluriCourts Centre, Faculty of Law, Universitetet i Oslo, working on an interdisciplinary research project evaluating the legitimacy of international courts and tribunals. She is also affiliated with the Europa Institute, Faculty of Law, Universiteit Leiden. As a Member of the Brussels Bar, she regularly acts as counsel or expert in international and European disputes. She is specialised in the Law of Treaties, responsibility of states and international organisations, Law of the Sea, WTO and investment, energy and sustainable development law.


    Freya Baetens, Nathalie Wiles, Philippe Gautier, Bridie Mcasey,Daniel Baker, Gabrielle Marceau, Philipp Ambach, Peter Kempees, Ledi Bianku, Caroline Heeren, Kathleen Claussen, Peter Tzeng, Brian Mcgarry, Josef Ostřanský, Christine Sim, Giacomo Marchisio, Matthew W. Swinehart, Leigh Swigart, Marie-Catherine Petersmann, Tommaso Soave, Guillaume Yvan Jean Gros, Ksenia Polonskaya, Damien Charlotin, Giovanna Maria Frisso, Relja Radović, Marko Divac Öberg, Gillian Cahill, Catherine H. Gibson, Andreas R. Ziegler, Kabre R. Jonathan, Pietro Ortolani, Hannes Lenk

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