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Beyond Dispute: International Judicial Institutions as Lawmakers

By Armin von Bogdandy & Ingo Venzke
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Suggested Citation: Armin von Bogdandy & Ingo Venzke, Beyond Dispute: International Judicial Institutions as Lawmakers, 12 German Law Journal 979-1004 (2011), available at

A.  The Research Interest

The increasing number of international judicial institutions, producing an ever-growing stream of decisions, has been one of the dominant features of the international legal order of the past two decades.  The shift in quantity has gone hand in hand with a transformation in quality.  Today, it is no longer convincing to only think of international courts in their role of settling disputes.   While this function is as relevant as ever, many international judicial institutions have developed a further role in what is often called global governance.  Their decisions have effects beyond individual disputes.  They exceed the confines of concrete cases and bear on the general legal structures.  The practice of international adjudication creates and shifts actors’ normative expectations and as such develops legal normativity.   Many actors use international judicial decisions in similar ways as they do formal sources of international law.   To us, this role of international adjudication beyond the individual dispute is beyond dispute.