nl en

International Dispute Settlement


Admissions requirements

Public International Law
Legal Methods


This course is an introduction to diplomatic and judicial forms of international dispute settlement. Students will learn about diplomatic forms of dispute settlement, such as negotiation and mediation, as well as judicial forms of dispute settlement, namely adjudication and arbitration. The international courts and tribunals covered in this course include the International Court of Justice, the International Law of the Sea Tribunal, the WTO Dispute Settlement Body, and arbitral tribunals in investor-State and inter-State cases. The students will also learn about the role of the United Nations and regional organizations in the settlement of disputes. Finally, the course will cover specific themes or topics within the field of international dispute settlement, such as provisional measures and jurisdiction and admissibility.

Week 1: Introduction to International Dispute Settlement
Week 2: Negotiation, Mediation, Inquiry and Conciliation
Week 3: The Role of the United Nations and Regional Organizations
Week 4: International Court of Justice
Week 5: Arbitration
Week 6: International Law of the Sea Tribunal and the World Trade Organization
Week 7: Selected Topics in International Dispute Settlement

Course objectives

Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:

  • Explain the foundations, the social and political context, and the workings of international dispute settlement;

  • Explain the differences between diplomatic and judicial forms of dispute settlement, and assess the advantages and disadvantages of each method;

  • Describe the functions of the international courts and tribunals covered in the course;

  • Discuss and evaluate the procedural aspects of judgments or awards of international courts and tribunals;

  • Apply legal rules on procedural issues to novel factual situations and draw analogies with existing case law.


Once available, timetables will be published here.

Mode of instruction

This course will consist of lectures, class discussions, presentations by students on assigned topics, and occasional group exercises.


In-class participation: 10% (throughout the block)
Presentation: 20% (weeks 2-6)
Short paper: 30% (to be determined)
Final exam: 40% (week 8)


There will be a Blackboard site available for this course. Students will be enrolled at least one week before the start of classes.

Reading list

J. Merrills, International Dispute Settlement (Cambridge University Press (most recent edition))
Links to additional reading materials will be made available on Blackboard.


This course is open to LUC students and LUC exchange students. Registration is coordinated by the Curriculum Coordinator. Interested non-LUC students should contact