The Future of International Courts - One Day Workshop The Future of International Courts - One Day Workshop

Future of International Courts Workshop UEA

Monday 3 July 2017 | University of East Anglia, Law School 

The University of East Anglia Law School’s Public International Law Group will be hosting a one-day SLS-funded workshop on the future of international courts. The objective of this workshop is to discuss the international adjudicative process, its current challenges and its possible evolution. Discussions will not be restricted to a specific field in public international law.

While the process of public international litigation is without a doubt experiencing a continuous four decades of innovation and expansion, certain changes seem to be looming. On the one hand, the judicial process of certain tribunals is changing; there is more acceptance of civil society’s engagement than ever before and rules are being amended in order to reflect principles such as transparency and inclusivity. Courts are also increasingly communicating between themselves, as well as with an increasing number of stake-holders. In some cases, courts have attempted to evolve in order to accommodate a demand for wider expertise (e.g. trade and environment), a development that sometimes blurs the lines between jurisdictions and applicable laws. On the other hand, some actors seem to be dissatisfied with the judicial process and are either abandoning it (e.g. ICC) or attempting to reshape it (e.g. investment law). Some tribunals are under unprecedented pressures from the most powerful states (e.g. WTO, PCA) and some authors have commented on a ‘backlash’ against international courts and tribunals, that is being expressed in different parts of the world, and which possibly undermines the authority and legitimacy of these courts.  

The development of the judicial process, in light of this unprecedented backlash and pressures, is the topic of this workshop. Speakers in this workshop will comment on current issues and future pathways, including:

  • The interaction between international courts and society
  • The interaction between international courts
  • The changing nature of the adjudicative process and evolving models of dispute resolution 
  • The ‘backlash’ against international courts and tribunals, and how to deal with it
  • The authority of international courts, in the era of changing global politics
  • The necessity to deal with multi-faceted disputes (e.g. trade and environment) in an increasingly specialised legal environment



The workshop is sponsored by the Society of Legal Scholars

Registration and Workshop Details






Getting to UEA