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The Law & Practice of International Organizations - Practicum


NB Students who will start the LL.M. PIL programme in February 2021 should contact the secretariat of Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies ( to receive further information about the course schedule and preparatory readings. A general information meeting for new (February) PIL students will be scheduled in the first week of February 2021.

Admission requirements

Admission to the PIL master programme.


International organizations play an important role in today’s international society. This course offers a comparative study of the institutional law of international organizations. Although each organization has its own legal order, institutional problems and rules of different organizations are often more or less the same, and an impressive body of institutional rules and principles has been developed. International organizations have much in common, such as rules on membership, powers, institutional structure, decision-making and decisions, financing and legal personality. The course discusses the practice of a number of international organizations, in particular the United Nations and practices writing skills in relation to the law of international organizations.

Course objectives

Objectives of the course
The main objective of this course is to familiarize students with the law and practice of international organizations.

Achievement levels
The following achievement levels apply with regard to the course:

After successfully completing this course, the student has a thorough knowledge of and insight into the existing legal framework, the foundations and the system of the law and practice of international organizations. The student has a profound knowledge of the specific rules and regulations that were studied during the course and of the interrelationship between those rules. Moreover, the student is well aware of the political and social context in which these rules are applied.

Academic skills and attitude:
After successfully completing this course, students can interpret and analyse the relevant sources and literature, draft legal documents under time pressure, and discuss their findings before a student audience.


The timetable of this course can be found in uSis.

Mode of instruction


  • Number of (2 hour) lectures: 10 (generally one per week)

  • Names of lecturers: Prof. dr. Niels M. Blokker; guest lecturers to be announced

  • Required preparation by students: Studying of the prescribed materials

Working groups

  • Number of (2 hour) working groups: 5-10 (on average one per two weeks, for exact dates see Course Outline)

  • Names of instructors: to be announced

  • Required preparation by students: Studying the prescribed materials and submitting papers before a specific deadline in accordance with the procedure indicated in the Course Outline and on Brightspace.

Other methods of instruction

Assessment method

Examination form(s)

  • Exam (50% of the final grade).

  • Four written assignments the average grade of which will count for 40% of the final grade. This average grade will also count in case of a resit of the exam, but is valid only for one academic year.

  • Students must prepare and participate in one practical exercise which will count for 10% of the final grade. This grade will also count in case of a resit of the exam, but is valid only for one academic year.

  • This course has the status of a practical exercise.

Submission procedures
All written assignments must be submitted in accordance with the procedure indicated in the Course Outline and Brightspace.

Regulation retake passed exams
In this course it is possible to retake an exam that has been passed (cf. art. and further of the Course and Examination Regulations), on the condition that this course is included in the compulsory components of the degree program. Students who have passed the exam may retake the final written assessment (test) of the course if they meet certain requirements. To retake a passed exam, students need to ask the Student Administration Office (OIC) for permission. For more information, go to 'course and exam enrollment' > 'permission for retaking a passed exam' on the student website.

Reading list

Obligatory course materials


  • H.G. Schermers & N.M. Blokker, International Institutional Law, Martinus Nijhoff, 6th revised edition (2018).

Course information guide:

  • Course outline as posted on Brightspace.

Recommended course materials
To be announced on Brightspace.


Registration for seminars and exams through uSis. Also register on Brightspace for extra course information.

Contact information

  • Coordinator: Prof. dr. N.M. Blokker

  • Telephone number: 071-527 7578 (secretariat)


  • Institute: Public Law

  • Division: Public International Law

  • Room number secretariat: KOG, Office B1.11

  • Opening hours: 9.00-17.00 hrs

  • Telephone number secretariat: 071-527 7578

  • E-mail: