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Master 2018/2019

Research Seminar "International Law and Introduction to Legal Research"

Type: Compulsory course (Business and Politics in Modern Asia)
Area of studies: Asian and African Studies
When: 1 year, 1-4 module
Mode of studies: Full time
Instructors: Sergei Akopov, Elena Cirkovic, Svetlana Krivokhizh, Elena Soboleva
Master’s programme: Business and Politics in Modern Asia
Language: English
ECTS credits: 9

Course Syllabus

Abstract

International law is at the crossroads as it is increasingly being challenged by the individual state interests, transnational economic actors, developments in technology and science, etc. This course is an MA level version of an introductory course to international law. We will especially focus on some of the contemporary areas of research in the discipline. The course instructor will introduce the students to her most recent research activities on the Law of the Sea, transnational law and Outer Space law. We will examine the United Nations and other systems (such as the WTO), situating them in relationship to the broader institutional structures of public international law and regulation, public and private state interests in the realms of politics and economics, and challenges from private and transnational ordering and multinational enterprise, as well as other nonstate actors. We will examine the functioning of these various international organizational mechanisms with particular focus on global legal pluralism, the environment, law of the sea, international space law, economic law and regulation, development, and security.
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • To provide an introduction to the field and principal issues of international law and institutions, examining the histories and theories of international law, economics, and politics.
  • To scrutinize the legal personality and political powers of international institutions in relation to the participation of individual state members and other extralegal developments.
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • Students are introduced to the research of international law
  • Students acknowledge the international law as a discipline, including the challenges of international legal education
  • Students are familiar with the methodology of normative pluralism in international law
  • Students are familiar with the history of international law
  • Students are introduced to the law of the outer space
  • Students are introduced to the law of the sea
  • Students are introduced to the international humanitarian law (IHL) or the law of the armed conflict (LOAC)
  • Students are introduced to the concepts of transnational law and lex mercatoria
  • Students are introduced to the concept of responsibility
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • Basic Introduction to the Research
  • Introduction to international law
  • Teaching and studying international law
  • Introducing Methodologies
  • International law and history
  • Contemporary topics in international law: International Space Law
  • Contemporary topics in international law: Law of the Sea
  • Contemporary topics in international law: International Humanitarian Law
  • Contemporary topics in international law: Transnational Law and Lex Mercatoria
  • Responsibility
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking Class participation
    Being part of the general class conversation; the course schedule indicates specific questions that will be addressed in class; students should be prepared to discuss them and to be cold-called.
  • non-blocking Group Project and Presentation
    Each student will work with a small team (ideally 5 members) to construct an “interactive learning tool” of its choosing. The purpose of this exercise is to work with others to create a fun, innovative and creative means of exploring a topic at the intersection of energy and international politics and security. While the course will cover a wide range of topics, it cannot cover every topic, and this assignment will give teams ownership over what they learn and the opportunity to share their findings with classmates in a format that they think would help them best grasp the chosen topic. Some of the teaching tools used throughout the semester will help teams envision what their group project might be; they might consider writing a case study, creating a simulation or negotiation, or devising a game on or off line. Teams are really only limited by their imagination as to what they might do and creativity is encouraged! Teams will be given a list of possible topics to explore that have not been examined in depth in class. Group projects will be graded on the quality of research and the quality of the final product as a learning tool. Those whose projects are selected for use at the end of the semester will receive extra credit.
  • non-blocking Final Paper
    Students will write a 4000 word research paper on the topic of their own choosing.
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • Interim assessment (4 module)
    0.2 * Class participation + 0.5 * Final Paper + 0.3 * Group Project and Presentation
Bibliography

Bibliography

Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Cotterrell, R. (2012). What Is Transnational Law? Law & Social Inquiry, 37(2), 500–524. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1747-4469.2012.01306.x
  • Gschwend, T., & Schimmelfennig, F. (2007). Research Design in Political Science : How to Practice What They Preach. Basingstoke [England]: Palgrave Macmillan. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=379877
  • Piiparinen, T., & Klabbers, J. (2013). Normative Pluralism and International Law : Exploring Global Governance. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=574859
  • Smits, J. M. (2012). Elgar Encyclopedia of Comparative Law (Vol. 2nd ed). Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=483155

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • Badescu, V. (2012). Moon : Prospective Energy and Material Resources. Berlin: Springer. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=537436
  • Benvenisti, E., & Nolte, G. (2018). Community Interests Across International Law (Vol. First edition). Oxford, United Kingdom: OUP Oxford. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1809361
  • Dunk, F. G. von der, & Tronchetti, F. (2015). Handbook of Space Law. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=961064
  • Koskenniemi, M. (2011). Empire and International Law: The Real Spanish Contribution. University of Toronto Law Journal, 61(1), 1–36. https://doi.org/10.1353/tlj.2011.0008
  • Ranganathan, S. (2016). Global Commons. European Journal of International Law, 27(3), 693–717. https://doi.org/10.1093/ejil/chw037
  • Robert N. Stavins. (2011). The Problem of the Commons: Still Unsettled after 100 Years. American Economic Review, (1), 81. https://doi.org/10.1257/aer.101.1.81
  • Walzer, M. (2006). Just and Unjust Wars : A Moral Argument with Historical Illustrations (Vol. Fourth edition). New York: Basic Books. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=982029
  • ZIFCAK, S. (2012). The responsibility to protect after Libya and Syria. Melbourne Journal of International Law, (1), 59. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsaup&AN=edsaup.20130160