After the success of last year’s biennial meeting of the European Society of International Law in Heidelberg, Germany, the next event is being organized by the Lauterpacht Centre for International Law, University of Cambridge and will take place on 2-4 September 2010. The conference theme is: International Law 1989-2010: A Performance Appraisal. Here is a short description of what is hidden behind this title.
The role of international law and international institutions during the Cold War (1949-1989) is generally recognised – the arrangements for Germany, control of nuclear proliferation, decolonization, the development of human rights standards and mechanisms, the law of the sea, the beginnings of environmental regulation, the Helsinki process… But how have international law and international institutions fared in the 21 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall?
The 4th ESIL Biennial Conference appraises their performance. We will look at both theory and practice, at particular sectors and overall at the “Gross International Product” – such as they have been, might have been and might still be. Of course, neither law nor institutions act of their own motion – people act through or in spite of them. The questions may then be asked – how have we done as international lawyers, and what have others made of our work? What imaginative possibilities remain?
Since yesterday the call for papers for the conference is open and can be found here.