Climate JusticeSymposium

Could “Net”-Zero Emissions prove to be a fatal blow for climate justice?

In 2015, after intense lobbying efforts and to the frustration of many climate justice activists, the Human Rights dimension of climate change was included not in the text, but only the preamble to the Paris Agreement. In the aftermath of the agreement, John Knox – at the time UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and the Environment – stated that „the Paris Agreement signifies the recognition by the international community …

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Call for ContributionsClimate JusticeSymposium

International law in an age of catastrophe

Call for Contributions for a symposium on Climate Justice

We live in an age of catastrophe. This is not alarmism. Rather, denying this would mean disregarding all scientific evidence we have. At the beginning of this new decade, Australia is literally on fire and Indonesia under water. 2019 has marked the year in which the climate crisis has finally entered broader public debate, with protesters around the globe demanding that governments take the threat seriously and significantly increase the …

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Plurality of Law and DevelopmentSymposium

A slow revolution to protect the poor and vulnerable?

The International Monetary Fund’s Social Spending Strategy 2019

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is the “single most influential international actor not only in relation to fiscal policy but also to social protection”. This is how the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights has recently characterized the IMF. The statement recognizes the importance of IMF policy-making for the sustainable financing of social protection frameworks. In June 2019 the IMF acknowledged this role with the adoption of the …

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Current Developments

Handschlag oder Kniefall?

Ein Kommentar zum Revised Draft Treaty on Business and Human Rights

Am 16.07.2019 hat die UN-Arbeitsgruppe „Open-ended intergovernmental working group on transnational corporations and other business enterprises with respect to human rights“ (OEIWG) einen überarbeiteten Entwurf [revised draft (RD)] für einen Vertrag zum Thema Unternehmen und Menschenrechte veröffentlicht. Es handelt sich hierbei um eine zweite, überarbeitete Version, nachdem der sog. zero draft (ZD) exakt ein Jahr zuvor veröffentlicht wurde. Der neue Entwurf enthält einige weitgehende Zugeständnisse an Industriestaaten und Unternehmen, die …

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Current Developments

Finally holding the World Bank accountable?

Analyzing Jam v International Financial Corporation from a TWAIL Perspective

The World Bank (WB), a financial institution born in the Bretton Woods Hotel at the end of the Second World War which enjoys far-reaching immunity due to its status as international organisation, must respond to the US justice system. This was the decision issued on February 27, 2019 by the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) with a wide margin of 7 votes to 1 in the case of …

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DiscussionResponse

Of BITs and pieces, resistance and simplification

It has been a pleasure to read to what now amounts to an exchange of views between Prof. Ranjan and Kanad Bagchi on some of the critical issues surrounding the foundations and functioning of international investment law (IIL), especially in relation to ‘Third World’ countries. Being deeply interested in the topic, and a member of the KFG ‘International Rule of Law – Rise or Decline?’ that has been mentioned by …

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DiscussionResponse

A BIT of resistance

A response to Prof. Prabhash Ranjan’s plea for embedded liberalism

In our current framework of post-truth/factual/reality politics, much of the debates surrounding crucial issues of both domestic and international governance are invariably couched in an inflexible, partisan and for most parts, in parochial terms. There is either utter disdain towards opposing perspectives or deliberate display of ignorance for plausible and varying rationalities. Nothing has been as vehemently contested as the role of the state in the economy, financial intermediation and …

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DiscussionResponse

Im „Handelskrieg“ schweigen die Gesetze

Im gegenwärtigen Disput zwischen den USA auf der einen und einer Reihe von anderen WTO-Mitgliedern auf der anderen Seite stößt das Welthandelsrecht an seine Grenzen. Die US-Zölle verstoßen jedenfalls gegen WTO-Recht, auch eine Berufung auf mögliche Ausnahmen erscheint höchst fragwürdig. Allerdings steht auch die Reaktion der EU auf rechtlich wackeligen Beinen. Die US-Zölle und das WTO-Recht Trumps größte Sorge gilt China, forderte er doch bereits im Zuge seines Wahlkampfs die …

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DiscussionKick-off

Will Tariff Wars Unravel the Multilateral Trading System?

History is not unfamiliar with the rigours of tariff wars. Back in the 1930s, retaliatory tariff escalation led to the great depression, which in turn contributed to the Second World War. Leaders of the free world sought to revive the beleaguered global economy through free and fair trade. Years of negotiations aimed at increasing market access and curtailing protectionism culminated in the establishment of the World Trade Organization (WTO). The …

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Business and Human RightsSymposium

Extraterritoriale Regulierung als Staatenpflicht

Kontext, Konflikte und Komplementarität

Kontext Zwei Aspekte des von der zwischenstaatlichen Arbeitsgruppe im September 2017 vorgelegten Diskussionspapiers, das die Grundlage des gegenwärtigen Tauziehens um eine verbindliche internationale Regelung der Unternehmensverantwortung für Menschenrechte bildet, sind aus der Perspektive des extraterritorialen Menschenrechtsschutzes von besonderer Relevanz. Erstens knüpft das Diskussionspapier den räumlichen Anwendungsbereich des anvisierten Instruments an Menschenrechtsverletzungen durch Unternehmen, die auf dem Territorium und/oder innerhalb des Kompetenzbereichs („jurisdiction“) des relevanten Staates stattfinden. Ein vergleichbarer Ansatz findet …

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