About the content
International Law in Action explains the functions of each international court and tribunal present in The Hague, and it looks at how these institutions address contemporary problems. On the basis of selected cases, and through interviews with judges and lawyers, you will explore the role of these courts and tribunals and their potential to contribute to global justice. The first module of the course will investigate how judicial settlement is different from other more political forms of dispute settlement, such as negotiation and mediation. It offers a brief historical overview and introduces the judicial and arbitral bodies based in The Hague. In the remaining modules you will learn about the functions of these courts and tribunals, and some of the challenges and prospects that they face. Three cross-cutting themes tie together all of these modules: (i) The interaction between law and politics; (ii) The continuing role of State consent; and (iii) The ability of international courts and tribunals to protect the public interest and global values. This course offers you an opportunity to gain a better insight into the functions and features of the courts and tribunals present in The Hague. You will gain a familiarity with each court or tribunal. You will develop realistic expectations of their capacity to address contemporary problems and an awareness of their limitations. You will also be able to discuss some of their most prominent cases. If you would like to have a better understanding of international law in action in The Hague, this is definitely the course for you! This course is free to join and to participate in. There is the possibility to get a verified certificate for the course, which is a paid option. If you want a certificate, but are unable to pay for it, you can request financial aid via Coursera
- Week 1 - An introduction to the International Courts and Tribunals in The Hague
Welcome to this first week in which we will enter the world of the international judiciary with you. We will discuss the evolution of international dispute settlement in our international legal order. The leading question is: why did people start thinking abou...
- Week 2 - The International Court of Justice (ICJ)
This week we are going to explore the principle judicial organ of the United Nations—the International Court of Justice. This Court has dual functions as an institution that settles disputes between States, and as an advice giver within the UN system. We will ...
- Week 3 - The Arbitration of International Disputes
This week, we will explore the world of international arbitration. More specifically, we will focus on the Permanent court of arbitration, inter-state arbitration and investor-state arbitration. Through our videos, you will discover the history and characteris...
- Week 4 - International Criminal Courts and Tribunals
This week examines a relatively new type of international courts, namely international criminal courts, with a focus on the ICC. We will discuss ongoing cases and debates, including sensitive issues such as the prosecution of sitting Heads of States. We will a...
- Week 5 - Conclusions of the three Course Themes
This week, we will directly focus on the three course themes that have structured our discussions in the previous modules: law and politics, state consent and global values. For each of these themes, the videos of this module will give you the opportunity to s...
Larissa van den Herik
Professor of Public International Law
Grotius Centre, International Law, Leiden Law School
Assistant Professor of International Law
Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies, Leiden Law School
Assistant Professor of International Law
Grotius Centre for international legal studies, Leiden Law School
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