LAW8559 : Contemporary Problems of International Law and International Dispute Settlement (Inactive)

Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0


This module aims:

• to provide in-depth understanding of the nature of the legal relations among States
• to critically assess highly controversial legal concepts such as the idea of “international community” and the existence of “collective interests”
• to provide comprehensive understanding of the roots and causes of complex legal phenomena, such as the fragmentation of international law, and to consider alternative solutions
• to examine the role of human rights in the development of foreign affairs
• to critically consider the lawfulness of nuclear weapons
• to assess the role of the United Nations and its mechanisms for dispute resolution
• to examine in depth the lawfulness of humanitarian intervention, the limits of self-defence, the scope and content of aggression by extensive reference to State practice

This module will be of interest to those who wish to pursue a career as legal or policy advisors in international organisations and bodies such as the United Nations and the European Union, non-governmental organisations, the public sector such as the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Justice or Defence, diplomatic corps and law firms.

Outline Of Syllabus

• The concept of international community in international law: peremptory norms and obligations owed to the international community of States as a whole
• Fragmentation of contemporary international law: proliferation of international organisations such as the World Trade Organisation, the European Union, the European Court of Justice with parallel jurisdictions
• Human Rights and Foreign Affairs
• Humanitarian intervention
• Lawfulness of the Use of Nuclear Weapons by States
• The Role of the United Nations and the Security Council in international dispute resolution
• Responsibility to protect

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching82:0016:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery41:004:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study801:0080:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The seminars will be interactive and will require advance preparation. The rationale for this teaching method is to promote analytical, argumentative and critical skills essential for discourse. The learning methods will rely on directed self study for the contact teaching time and independent study for the preparation of assessed coursework which will bring together the knowledge, cognitive, research and the assessed key skills.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Description Length Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written Examination1352A1003 out of 6 questions
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The use of an examination provides an opportunity to demonstrate understanding and writing skills. It allows candidates to demonstrate intended learning outcomes across a broad range of topics within the syllabus.

Reading Lists