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Experiments in International Adjudication
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Expected online publication date: March 2019
  • Print publication year: 2019
  • Online ISBN: 9781108565967

Book description

The history of international adjudication is all too often presented as a triumphalist narrative of normative and institutional progress that casts aside its uncomfortable memories, its darker legacies and its historical failures. In this narrative, the bulk of 'trials' and 'errors' is left in the dark, confined to oblivion or left for erudition to recall as a curiosity. Written by an interdisciplinary group of lawyers, historians and social scientists, this volume relies on the rich and largely unexplored archive of institutional and legal experimentation since the late nineteenth century to shed new light on the history of international adjudication. It combines contextual accounts of failed, or aborted, as well as of 'successful' experiments to clarify our understanding of the past and present of international adjudication.

Reviews

‘Experiments in International Adjudication is a treasure. Recovering successful and failed efforts at international adjudication in the nineteenth and twentieth century, spanning Africa, Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East, a stellar group of scholars considers why history does and does not remember or build on early efforts at international adjudication. Beyond explicating little known international adjudication experiments, we learn of the forces working for and against generalizing these experiments so as to lay the groundwork for constructing an international judiciary capable of resolving trans-border disputes and generating state responsibility and accountability to international law.'

Karen J. Alter - Northwestern University and iCourts

‘Experiments in International Adjudication is an overdue and necessary complement to the burgeoning research on international courts and tribunals. The authors, outstanding experts, have shed light on so far unknown institutions, facets of seemingly familiar ones, and show how many of the 'experiments' failed, while others led to unforeseen results. This book fills a gap and will stimulate further investigations on the histories and functions, problems and potentials of eminently important institutions in international law and relations.'

Anne Peters - Director of the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and Public International Law and Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg, Freie Universität Berlin and William C. Cook Global Law Professor at the University of Michigan

‘This collection of fascinating essays on instances and experiments in international adjudication from the last two centuries significantly thickens the narrative of the historical emergence of present-day international courts and tribunals. By delving into the rich histories of failed or unfinished experiments with arbitral and judicial dispute settlement between states, the book shows that the recent proliferation and diversification of international adjudication has deep historical roots and that the disruptive effects these variations are often perceived to have on international law as a system, may actually be crucial to its endurance.'

Randall Lesaffer - Tilburg University and Katholieke Universiteit Leuven

‘Experiments in International Adjudication is a very welcome addition to the already large literature on international courts and tribunals. But different from most other books, this volume reveals the story of little-known experiments of international adjudication. Thereby, it enriches our understanding in a multitude of ways and makes us rethink what really works in terms of international adjudication. Written by a set of understanding scholars, this book is a little treasure trove that should be read by anyone with an interest in the history of international law.'

Mikael Rask Madsen - Director of iCourts, Centre of Excellence for International Courts, University of Copenhagen

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