This seminar will explore the legal aspects of international public policy, an emerging field at the intersection of international law and international relations. In an age of globalization, critical policies affecting nations, organizations and individuals in issue areas as diverse as finance, security, technology, and the environment are being set at the international level in a range of forums that extend beyond the traditional UN family of state-based institutions and related intergovernmental organizations (IGOs) to the G-20, the G-8 and other ad hoc international leadership groupings, proliferating international secretariats, multinational corporations and trade associations, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and specialist bodies of experts. Law inevitably frames and reflects their agenda-setting, decision-making, and enforcement practices, and lawyers in both public and private settings are playing an important role in the articulation and elaboration of international policy choices outside the context of traditional treaties and international court rulings.
So-called “global governance”, however, is complex and challenging. This seminar is designed to support law students interested in international public policy making by exploring how public policy is formulated, executed and enforced on the international level, the role of lawyers acting for various state and non-state actors in the international policy process, and the rhetorical forms commonly associated with that process. Once a theoretical groundwork has been laid, students will be introduced to the interplay of law and international public policy in a series of three current issue areas highlighting transnational, multilateral and global concerns respectively.