Cover image of Public International Law Discussion Group (Part II)

Public International Law Discussion Group (Part II)

Lectures on international law issues by eminent scholars, practitioners and judges of national and international courts. The lecture series is brought to you by the Public International Law Discussion Group, part of the Law Faculty of the University of Oxford, and is supported by the British Branch of the International Law Association and Oxford University Press. Further details of this series can be found on the Public International Law at Oxford website. .

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The Trump Administration and International Law: Will It Get Better or Worse?

The talk will review the Trump administration’s record in international and national security law over the last 18 months, and will address challenges ahead, including the administration’s counter-terrorism policies and approach to international agreement and international courts, including the International Criminal Court and International Court of Justice.John Bellinger heads the public international law practice at Arnold & Porter in Washington, DC, and is Adjunct Senior Fellow in International and National Security Law at the Council on Foreign Relations. He previously served as The Legal Adviser to the Department of State from 2005–09, under then-secretary of state Condoleezza Rice and as Senior Associate Counsel to the president and Legal Adviser to the National Security Council at the White House from 2001–05. He represented the United States in Mexico v. United States (Medellin) before the ICJ. In 2016, he drafted the letter signed by 50 former Republican national security officials that stated Donald Trump ‘lacks the character, values, and experience to be President.


12 Jun 2018

Rank #1

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The Legal Metamorphosis of War

War does not escape the transformations global governance has experienced in the past decades. The research presented identifies a move from a binary War-Peace framework to a global security governance, characterized by techno-managerial normative assemblages aiming at taming risk.Core to the project of international law throughout the 20th century, peace has been occupying a central role in the development of international legal regimes aiming at governing armed violence. But the promise of peace is being increasingly sided by an adjacent, concurrent project, one that promises a more secure world, where risks are forecasted and mitigated or are at least measured. Global security aims at preventing violence and conflict together with health, financial and environmental crises that are predicted and mapped to be better managed. Lists, corporate social responsibility instruments, indicators, ratings and algorithmic devices – the instruments that regulate global security – are produced by means of a technical expertise, resting on a mathematical and behaviorist rationality aiming at taming risk. International legal categories and distinctions do not disappear but are transformed. War and peace are being reimagined and placed on a spectrum of measurable violence and insecurity, combatant and civilian categories are fragmented and made increasingly dependent on more contained behavioral patterns.Dr Delphine Dogot’s research is at the intersection of law, philosophy and social sciences in particular in relation to globalization and technology. She is a Research Fellow at the Law Department of HEC Paris where she develops several research projects investigating the transformation of law and regulation when embedded with algorithmic and data-driven technologies.Delphine Dogot holds a Ph.D. in Law from Sciences Po, a Master's and Bachelor’s degree in Law from the Université Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne, as well as Master's degree in Sociology and a Bachelor's degree in Philosophy from the Université Paris 4 Paris-Sorbonne. She has previously been Exchange Researcher at Harvard Law School, Fellow at the Perelman Centre for Legal Philosophy (ULB), and OXPO Fellow at Nuffield College, University of Oxford.Delphine writes in transnational legal theory, international and global law, conflict and security law and law and technology. She has taught or is currently teaching courses on company law, contract law, global law, international law, philosophy and theory of human rights, legal theory & methodology and at ULB, Sciences Po, HEC Paris, Université Paris II Panthéon-Assas and Faculté Libre de Droit de Lille.


25 Jan 2019

Rank #2

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Corporations and Human Rights Regulation

This talk will consider the regulation of corporations for the human rights impacts of their activities. It will include the role of legislation, industry sectors and civil society, as well as courts, in regulation of the actions of corporations that abuse human rights. It will use the framework of developments in the area of responsible business conduct, especially of human rights due diligence.Professor Robert McCorquodale is Professor of International Law and Human Rights at the University of Nottingham, barrister at Brick Court Chambers in London, and Founder and Principal of Inclusive Law, a consultancy on business and human rights. He was the Director of the British Institute of International and Comparative Law for 10 years. He has published widely in all these areas, and engaged closely with governments, corporations, international institutions and civil society in his work.


12 Feb 2019

Rank #3

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The Oxford Guidance on the Law Relating to Humanitarian Relief Operations in Armed Conflict

The provision of life-saving assistance to people affected by armed conflict lies at the heart of humanitarian actors’ operations... and the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and their Additional Protocols of 1977 lay down rules regulating humanitarian relief operations. Despite this, until recently, this area of international humanitarian law has received limited attention, possibly because challenges in implementing relief operations tend to be operational rather than legal in nature. In 2013, in response to the refusal of some belligerents to allow relief to reach people in extreme need, the United Nations Secretary-General requested the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) to examine the relevant rules and consider options for guidance. In turn, OCHA commissioned the Institute for Ethics, Law and Armed Conflict at the University of Oxford to convene a series of consultation of legal experts. These led to the elaboration of the Oxford Guidelines on the Law Regulating Humanitarian Relief Operations in Situations of Armed Conflict: a document that restates existing law, and clarifies areas of uncertainty. It considers key elements of this area of law, including the question of whose consent is required to conduct relief operations; the circumstances in which withholding consent would be arbitrary; the rules on the implementation of relief operations; and the consequences of unlawful impeding of relief operations.The Guidance can be assessed at the following link: https://www.law.ox.ac.uk/content/oxford-guidance-law-relating-humanitarian-relief-operations-situations-armed-conflict


5 Dec 2017

Rank #4

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Interaction between Hard Law and Soft Law in United Nations Law-Making

From a law-making perspective 'soft-law' is simply a convenient description for a variety of non-binding, normatively worded instruments used in contemporary international relations by states and international organisations. The paper begins by examining the considerations that have encouraged the use of 'soft' law instruments in UN law-making. The literature identifies at least four reasons. First, it may be easier to reach agreement when the form is non-binding. Secondly, soft law instruments are more flexible. They will normally be easier to supplement, amend or replace than treaties, since all that is required is the adoption of a new resolution by the relevant international institution. Thirdly, it may be easier for some states to adhere to non-binding instruments because they can avoid the domestic treaty ratification process and perhaps escape democratic accountability for the policy to which they have agreed. Last, soft law instruments may provide more immediate evidence of international consensus on an agreed text than a treaty whose impact is qualified by reservations and the need to wait for ratification and entry into force. The bulk of the paper reviews the purposes for which soft law has been employed by the UN: declaratory law-making, codification and progressive development, facilitating treaty negotiation, interpretation of treaties, and subsidiary rules and standards. The paper concludes by observing that soft law is not the paradox portrayed in some of the literature. It is the product of an increasingly sophisticated legal system. It needs to be understood, not simply dismissed as something that is not law.Alan Boyle was Professor of Public International Law at the University of Edinburgh School of Law from 1995 until 2017. He taught international law, international environmental law, and law of the sea. Publications include International Law and the Environment (with Catherine Redgwell) (4th edn, OUP, 2018) and The Making of International Law (with Christine Chinkin) (OUP, 2007). He is a barrister and continues to practise international law from Essex Court Chambers, London. Professor Boyle has appeared as counsel before the ICJ, the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, and UNCLOS arbitral tribunals.


28 Feb 2018

Rank #5

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Draft Principles on Shared Responsibility

A presentation of the new principles of shared responsibility in international law The event featured a presentation of the new principles of shared responsibility in international law which supplement as well as amend the 2001 Articles on the Responsibility of States as well as the 2011 Articles on the Responsibility of International Organizations. The principles have been prepared by a group of experts of the law of international responsibility and will soon be disseminated.


6 Mar 2018

Rank #6

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Immunity from Execution of Military and Cultural Goods

Recent years have seen numerous attempts to seize State assets held outside a State's national territory to satisfy debts owed by the State to private persons. Assets targeted have included military and cultural goods (from visiting naval vessels to paintings on loan to foreign museums). But such attempts have generally been unsuccessful, even when debtors have relied on widely-worded waivers of immunity. This presentation will examine why.Matthew Happold is Professor of Public International Law at the University of Luxembourg, having previous taught at several universities in the United Kingdom. He is a member of the Commission consultative des droits de l'homme, Luxembourg's national human rights institution, and practices as a barrister from 3 Hare Court, London. He is presently a Visiting Fellow at the Lauterpacht Institute for International law at Cambridge University.


7 Jun 2017

Rank #7

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Proving International Crimes

International criminal tribunals face an enormous task when they seek to analyse the thousands of pages of evidence that are presented in the course of their trials... AbstractInternational criminal tribunals face an enormous task when they seek to analyse the thousands of pages of evidence that are presented in the course of their trials, and to draw conclusions on the guilt or innocence of accused persons based on that evidence. Yet, whilst rules of admissibility have been subjected to a great deal of academic commentary, many key debates relating to proof in international criminal trials have remained under-theorised to date. This paper discusses the evaluation of evidence in international criminal trials. It argues that, despite over two decades of practice in contemporary international criminal tribunals, no consistent approach as to how judges should weigh evidence and use it for fact-finding has emerged. The quality of evidence required to meet the standard of proof at different stages of proceedings in the International Criminal Court remains uncertain. Furthermore, it shall be argued that the structure of international criminal judgments can detract from the clarity of their findings, and this in turn has an impact on their legal and sociological legitimacy.Bio: Yvonne McDermott Rees is Associate Professor of Law at the Hillary Rodham Clinton School of Law, Swansea University. She is the author of Fairness in International Criminal Trials (Oxford University Press, 2016) and over 50 journal articles and book chapters on international criminal procedure, human rights, and the law of evidence in international criminal trials. She is an Academic Fellow of the Honourable Society of the Inner Temple, and a Door Tenant at Invictus Chambers, London.


23 Jan 2018

Rank #8

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The Analogy between States and International Organizations

An analogy between States and international organizations has characterised the development of the law that applies to intergovernmental institutions on the international plane. That is best illustrated by the work of the International Law Commission on the treaties and responsibility of international organizations, where the Commission for the most part extended to organizations rules that had been originally devised for States. The talk will reflect on the foundations and limits of the assumption that the two main categories of international legal subjects are analogous for certain purposes, and discuss the elusive position that international organizations occupy in the international legal system.About the speaker:Fernando Lusa Bordin is a Thornely Fellow and Lecturer in Law at Sidney Sussex College and an Affiliated Lecturer at the University of Cambridge. His research focuses on topics of public international law, including law-making, international organizations and the intersection between international law and legal theory. He holds an LL.B. from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil), an LL.M. from New York University, and a PhD from the University of Cambridge. He is a recipient of the Yorke Prize (University of Cambridge), Young Scholar Prize (International & Comparative Law Quarterly) and the Diploma of Public International Law (Hague Academy of International Law).


6 Nov 2018

Rank #9

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Transnational Conflicts: A New Kind of War?

Dr Ziv Bohrer, assistant professor at Bar-Ilan University Faculty of Law, gives a talk for the Public International Law Discussion Group. Please note, the recording for this podcast ended before the end, we apologise for the inconvenience. What international law corpus applies to border-crossing fights between non-State and State forces (transnational conflicts): peacetime-general international law, the Law of International Armed Conflict, the Law of Non-International Armed Conflict, or a new wartime international law altogether?This issue is widely disputed, because transnational conflicts fail to neatly fit into any recognised legal category of collective violence. The 'goofiness' of transnational conflicts is commonly attributed to their novelty. But, nearly two decades already passed since 9/11 (the event marking their rise) without reaching an accepted classification. This classification dispute is not alone. Since the early 2000s, international lawyers have been perpetually debating numerous war-related classifications. Transnational conflicts are considered a primary cause for the present classification crisis: wars of a new kind that is eroding the longstanding distinctions of International Humanitarian Law (IHL).The talk questions the historical accuracy of the accepted assumption that the attributes of transnational conflicts are novel and of the related premise that IHL regulation of transnational conflicts is novel. The talk suggests an alternative explanation for the current strong sense of a classification crisis.BioDr. Ziv Bohrer is an assistant professor at Bar-Ilan University, Faculty of Law. His main areas of interest are International Criminal Law and International Humanitarian Law. He is currently researching the long (forgotten) pre-WWII history of International Criminal Law.Prior to that he was a Fulbright fellow and a Visiting Research Scholar at the University of Michigan (2011-12), and a Research Fellow at the Sacher Institute Sacher Institute for Legislative Research and Comparative Law (2012-13).Ziv received his Ph.D. (2011) and LL.M. (2007) from Tel-Aviv University-Faculty of Law, magna cum laude and his LL.B and B.A. (in psychology) from Haifa University. Ziv teaches: Public International Law, International Criminal Law, International Humanitarian law (Law of Armed Conflict), Justification for Punishment in International Criminal Law (seminar).Co-organised with the Oxford Institute for Ethics Law and Armed Conflict (ELAC)


31 Oct 2017

Rank #10

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The International Law Commission as an Interpreter of International Law

The International Law Commission is a subsidiary organ of the United Nations General Assembly entrusted with the progressive development of international law and its codification. This talk argues that the Commission interprets international law, as part of its function, in numerous topics of its work, and that the Commission’s interpretative activity serves its long-lasting vision to reinforce international law by providing clarity and predictability as to its content thus convincing states to continue to use international law as a medium by which they regulate their affairs.Dr. Danae Azaria is a Senior Lecturer at the Faculty of Laws at University College London (UCL). She is the author of numerous publications on public international law, including the monograph, 'Treaties on Transit of Energy via Pipelines and Countermeasures' (OUP, OMIL, 2015), which received the Paul Guggenheim Prize in Public International Law (2016). Her research interests lie in general public international law, the law of treaties, state responsibility, international economic law and the law of the sea. Her recent research focuses on the work of International Law Commission, and the Sixth Committee. She frequently advises governments, international organisations and companies on issues of public international law.


6 Feb 2018

Rank #11

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The Consequences of Brexit

Since the 24 June 2016, the politics of Brexit – in both the UK and the EU – has driven the negotiations and discussion surrounding the UK's departure from the EU. It is the international legal framework, however, that has framed those negotiations and will shape the UK's future trading relationship with the EU and the rest of the world after March 2019, in whatever form Brexit takes. Andrew Hood will examine some of the structural and practical realities of public international law that have governed – and will continue to govern – the future of the UK and the EU in a post-Brexit world.About the speaker:Andrew has almost 20 years of experience as an EU, trade, regulatory and public international lawyer working in both the public and private sectors. He is currently a partner at the law firm Fieldfisher and has previously spent over 13 years as a lawyer and negotiator for the UK Government, including as a lawyer at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, a UK negotiator in Brussels, Head of International and EU Law at the Attorney General’s Office and the General Counsel in 10 Downing Street for Prime Minister David Cameron.


13 Nov 2018

Rank #12

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Arbitral Authority to Address Corruption - Part B

Arbitrators have many powers – express, implied, and those inherent in the very process of arbitration. Disputes that involve corruption put into question the breadth of those powers.


28 Feb 2018

Rank #13

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Planetary Defence: Asteroids, Nuclear Weapons and International Law

This paper examines issues related to the question of 'planetary defence', in the sense of responding to an asteroid - or any other type of Near-Earth Object (NEO) - were such a body to be detected as being on a collision-course with the Earth and predict The first part of the paper will be 'non-legal' in nature. It aims to set the context by outlining: 1) what risks NEOs actually pose, 2) the unprecedented global political and institutional shifts towards NEO preparedness that have occurred in the last five years, 3) the recent increased scientific and political support for the 'nuclear option' in particular, and 4) the parallel developments in the nuclear disarmament and anti-space weaponisation movements that point in a very different direction. The second part of the paper will then turn to the legal implications of using nuclear weapons against an NEO, focusing on the apparent prohibition of such action under both the 1967 Outer Space Treaty and the 1963 Partial Test-Ban Treaty. Further, possible 'defences' to illegality will be discussed.BioJames A. Green is Professor of Public International Law at the University of Reading, where he has been a member of staff since 2006. Currently he is also a visiting scholar at the University of Oxford, Faculty of Law (until January 2018), and previously has been a visiting scholar at the University of Michigan. James is the winner of the European Society of International Law Book Prize 2017 for The Persistent Objector Rule and International Law (OUP, 2016) and the American Society of International Law's Francis Lieber Prize 2010 for The International Court of Justice and Self-Defence in International Law (Hart, 2009). His primary research interests include the use of force (jus as bellum) and the nature of customary international law. He has published widely in leading international law journals around the world, as well as editing various book collections and contributing to others. James is the co-editor-in-chief of the Journal on the Use of Force and International Law (Routledge) and has been a member of the International Law Association's Use of Force Committee since 2010.


28 Nov 2017

Rank #14

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The 2020 UN Human Rights Treaty Body Review: strengthening or strangling the system?

Following a difficult and protracted process, in 2014 the UNGA adopted Resolution 68/268 which set out to strengthen the UN human rights treaty body system. It mandated a further review in 2020. The proposals which are emerging for that review have the potential to radically change the nature of the UN human rights system - but whether for better or worse is keenly contested. In his talk, Malcolm Evans, who has been a participant in these developments, will outline the background to the proposals and offer a personal assessment, from a treaty body perspective, of their significance for the future of the machinery of international human rights protection.Malcolm Evans is Professor of Public International Law at the University of Bristol, UK where he has taught since 1988. His areas of legal specialism include both international human rights protection and the international law of the sea. In the field of human rights his particular interests concern torture and torture prevention and the protection of religious liberty under international law, on both of which he was written extensively. He became a member of the UN Subcommittee for the Prevention of Torture (the SPT) in 2009 and since 2011 has been serving as its Chair. From 2014-2015 he was the Chairperson of the Meeting of Chairs of UN Human Rights Treaty Bodies. From 2002 – 2013 he was a member of the OSCE ODIHR Advisory Council on the Freedom of Religion or Belief. He is also a member of the UK Foreign Secretary’s Human Rights Advisory Group. He has acted as an independent advisor and consultant for numerous international organisations over many years. From 2003-5 he was Head of the School of Law and from 2005-2009 Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Law at the University of Bristol. From 2016-2018 he was a member of the Commission on Religious Education established by the Religious Education Council. Since 2015 he has been a Member of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse in England and Wales (IICSA).He is General Editor of the International and Comparative Law Quarterly and Co-Editor in Chief of the Oxford Journal of Law and Religion. Major published works include: Religious Liberty and International Law in Europe (CUP, 1997), Preventing Torture (OUP, 1998), Combating Torture in Europe (Council of Europe, 2002), Manual on the Wearing of Religious Symbols in Public Areas (Council of Europe/Brill, 2009), The Optional Protocol to the UN Convention against Torture (OUP, 2011), The Changing Nature of Religious Rights under International Law (ed) (OUP, 2015), Preventing Torture in Europe (Council of Europe, 2018). He is Editor of International Law (OUP, 5th ed, 2018) and Blackstone’s International Law Documents (OUP, 13th ed, 2017).


1 Feb 2019

Rank #15

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Why punish perpetrators of mass atrocities? Reflections on peace, punishment and the ICC

Ever since the trial against the major war criminals of World War II before the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg the institution of 'punishment' has been an integral part of the international legal system. Nowadays a considerable number of perpetrators of crimes under international law – that is: genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes – are being sent to jail by international judges. But why and to what aim do we punish individuals for their involvement in mass atrocities? How can we justify punishment by international criminal courts and tribunals vis-à-vis the affected individual? Or more generally: What are and what should be the rationales for punishment in international law? Among the (few) answers given to these questions one relates to the claim that international prosecutions and punishment would contribute to the restoration and maintenance of peace ('peace through punishment'). Some scholars (and Courts) simply want to apply the theoretical concepts from the domestic context, such as retribution, deterrence, rehabilitation, norm stabilisation and so forth, to the realm of crimes under international law that ('domestic analogy'). The paper will present some preliminary reflections on these issues. About the speakerFlorian Jeßberger is Professor of Law at the Faculty of Law, Universität Hamburg, where he holds the Chair in Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, International Criminal Law, and Modern Legal History and serves as the Associate Dean for Research & International Affairs. Currently (Michaelmas term) he is a Short-Term Visiting Fellow at Jesus College in the University of Oxford. Before joining Universität Hamburg in 2010, Florian was the Lichtenberg Professor of International and Comparative Criminal Law at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin.A co-editor of the Journal of International Criminal Justice (Oxford University Press) Florian authored numerous articles and three books, the most recent of which is ‚Principles of International Criminal Law' published by Oxford University Press (4th ed. forthcoming 2019; with G. Werle) and translated into various languages (German, Spanish, Chinese, Russian, Italian). He has edited or co-edited four scholarly volumes and four special issues or symposia in peer reviewed journals. Currently, Florian is leading a team of scholars conducting research into the seminal Stammheim-Trial (1974-1977) of the leaders of the German terrorist group Rote Armee Fraktion. In another multi-year project he co-ordinates interdisciplinary research into strategic litigation in the area of gross violations of human rights.


16 Oct 2018

Rank #16

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Arbitral Authority to Address Corruption - Part A

Arbitrators have many powers – express, implied, and those inherent in the very process of arbitration. Disputes that involve corruption put into question the breadth of those powers. The first tribunals confronted by cases involving corrupt acts were concerned about their taint bringing into disrepute the process of arbitration. A whiff of scandal thus served as a basis for dismissal. Tribunals in later cases have shown a more nuanced approach but often with apprehension about potential suggestions that arbitration could be viewed as helping one party to the corruption profit from, or profit notwithstanding, his bad behaviour. Several recent investment arbitration cases have thrown the problem into sharp relief. Dismissals have rested on several grounds. One approach has been to rely on the language of the investment treaty in question to support dismissal for lack of jurisdiction because a corruptly obtained investment is usually not lawful and thus cannot satisfy treaty requirements that investments be made “in accordance with host state laws.” Another grounding for dismissal of the claim has been the investor’s lack of “clean hands.” Another reason given has been the strong international public policy against corruption as exemplified by the multiple international conventions fighting it and the general international consensus about its insidiously damaging nature. I suggest that none of these bases is a valid ground for depriving a tribunal of the power to hear a case that otherwise falls within its purview. Rather, arbitral tribunals have the inherent authority to ensure that the quasi-adjudicatory process of arbitration is not subverted by allegations of corruption that might or might not prove spurious, but whose early dismissal will tend to hide the problem and potentially exacerbate it. Indeed, suggesting that the international public policy against corruption requires dismissal of a case defies logic, and application of the law of state responsibility requires holding state acts accountable for the acts attributable to the state, which would often (though not always) be the case.Andrea K. Bjorklund is a Full Professor and the L. Yves Fortier Chair in International Arbitration and International Commercial Law at McGill University Faculty of Law. For Hilary Term 2018 she is a Plumer Fellow at St. Anne’s College and a Visiting Fellow in the Faculty of Law at the University of Oxford. In 2017 she was named one of McGill’s Norton Rose Scholars in International Arbitration and International Commercial Law. In addition to serving as an adviser to the American Law Institute’s project on restating the U.S. law of international commercial arbitration, she is a member of the Advisory Board of the Investment Treaty Forum of the British Institute for International and Comparative Law. She is on the panel of arbitrators of the AAA’s International Centre for Dispute Resolution and on the roster of NAFTA Chapter 19 arbitrators. Professor Bjorklund has a J.D. from Yale Law School, an M.A. in French Studies from New York University, and a B.A. (with High Honors) in History and French from the University of Nebraska.


28 Feb 2018

Rank #17

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Addressing key challenges to the prohibition of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment

The absolute prohibition of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment is under considerable pressure. This talk will explore how the prohibition is understood, questioned, and flouted, and trace continuities between torture and other dimensions of our securitised and unequal societies. Distilling key challenges for the prohibition, including those often overshadowed by the ubiquitous ‘ticking bomb’ scenario and ther prominent areas of concern, it will consider how those committed to the prohibition can meaningfully respond to them.About the SpeakerDr Natasa Mavronicola is Senior Lecturer in Law at Birmingham Law School, University of Birmingham. Prior to joining Birmingham Law School, she was a Lecturer in Law at Queen’s University Belfast (2013-16). Since 2017, she serves as Advisor to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, Professor Nils Melzer. She has conducted research for the Council of Europe and the Irish legislature and has published work in journals such as the Human Rights Law Review and the Modern Law Review. Her work on the prohibition of torture includes the recent article ‘Is the Prohibition Against Torture and Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment Absolute in International Human Rights Law? A Reply to Steven Greer’ (2017) 17 Human Rights Law Review 479.She completed her PhD in Law at the University of Cambridge, the BCL at the University of Oxford, and the LLB (Hons) at University College London. Her main research focus is human rights law.


23 Oct 2018

Rank #18

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Travaux, Commentaries and Encyclopedias - how we write them and how we use them

The presentation will discuss the approaches to writing such reference works (based on the speaker's experience with the Update of the ICRC Commentaries to the 1949 Conventions, and the Max Planck Encyclopedia of International Procedural Law). The presentation will discuss the approaches to writing such reference works (based on the speaker’s experience with the Update of the ICRC Commentaries to the 1949 Conventions, and the Max Planck Encyclopedia of International Procedural Law). Then a reflection will follow on how we - as researchers - use these reference works. Are references to reference works allowed in an academic paper? Are they objective, are they pointing us to existing debate, or do they make us all lazy? Reference works are an everyday presence in academic work, but should we reflect more about them?Liesbeth Lijnzaad is judge at the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (Hamburg) since 2017. She is a former Legal Adviser of the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs and head of its international law department (2006 - 2017). She is a member of the Permanent Court of Arbitration and of the San Remo Institute of International Humanitarian Law. Professor dr E.Lijnzaad is also endowed professor Practice of International Law at Maastricht University. She studied law and history, receiving master’s degrees in international law (1985) and Dutch law (1987) from the University of Amsterdam, and holds a PhD in international law from Maastricht University in 1994.


5 Dec 2018

Rank #19

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Unmaking the ocean

This talk will discuss elements of a research project that explores the evolution of the law of the sea over the course of the 20th century It will focus on the emergence of the seabed as an area of political, economic and technological interest, and trace its subjection to national and international regimes. Calling attention to the legally constructed imaginary of the seabed as a space distinct from the above water, the talk will re-examine views of both the ocean and the law, which are commonly held, and presented as natural and therefore necessary. Suggesting instead a greater focus on the contingencies and false contingencies informing the development of the law, the talk will join a small but growing literature on the unnatural history of the sea. About the Speaker:Surabhi Ranganathan is a University Lecturer in Law and a Fellow of King's College at the University of Cambridge.She is also a fellow of the Lauterpacht Centre and the author of Strategically Created Treaty Conflicts and the Politics of International Law (CUP 2014). With an interest in the history of international law, natural resources and distribution, her current work focuses on the law of the sea and global commons.


26 Oct 2018

Rank #20