Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Call for Papers: Business and International Law - New Scholars

The British Institute of International and Comparative Law has issued a call for papers for new scholars for its annual conference, to be held June 5, 2009, in London. The conference theme is: "Business and International Law." Here's the call:

The 2009 Annual Conference of the British Institute of International and Comparative Law will be held on Friday 5 June 2009 in London. The theme of the conference will be: ‘Business and International Law’.

This Call for Papers is for new scholars to submit a proposal for a paper to be delivered at the Conference. It is designed to encourage new academics, doctoral and masters students, and new legal professionals. A list of panels and a brief summary of the issues to be addressed by them is set out below, though this is not the final programme. Papers on subjects within these themes or more generally on the subject of business and international law are sought.

Interested persons should submit a synopsis (350-600 words) of their proposed presentation no later than Monday 16 March 2009 at 5.00pm GMT. The synopsis should provide an outline of the proposed paper and should identify the argument to be advanced, and the major issues to be addressed. Proposal submissions should be accompanied by a short CV (no more than 2 pages). The submission should indicate the author’s name, institutional affiliation and contact details.

All papers should be sent in the first instance by email to Sergey Ripinsky (BIICL) at The proposals will then be considered by members of the Conference Steering Group. The outcome of the review will be announced in early April 2009. Unfortunately, the British Institute will not be able to cover travel expenses for successful applicants.

Conference Panels

Business and Cartel Enforcement

This panel will consider competition law enforcement efforts to prohibit international cartels. Unilateral extraterritorial enforcement and more current cooperative efforts will be considered, including the latest use of extradition, imprisonment and disqualification of directors.

Business and International Crimes

Businesses operating in situations of armed conflict or repressive regimes are increasingly at risk of violating or being complicit in the violation of international law, in particular international humanitarian law and international criminal law, whether through their own conduct or the conduct of those they engage. Violations may include engaging an abusive private security company, forcibly expelling people from their communities to enable a project, providing the means to kill (sometimes in violation of international sanctions regimes), permitting the use of company assets in the commission of international crimes, and financing or otherwise supporting unlawful conduct. This panel will consider the potential criminal responsibility of corporate actors for such conduct.

Business and Damages Actions

Actions for damages against business, especially by collective/class actions, have affected both the operation of those businesses and the application of law. This panel will consider a range of the damages actions that have occurred.

Business, Investment and International Law

Foreign investors are keen to reduce political risks in host States and therefore prefer to have their investments covered by international law where possible. The relevant international legal framework has changed quite dramatically over the past decade. The developments in this area will be explored in this panel including the balance of rights and obligations in more recent investment treaties and the impact this may have on investors as well as changing expectations of host States: from attracting any type of investment to more quality and sustainable investment.

Business and Human Rights

The scope of international human rights obligations on business practices has been developing at a fast pace. This has prompted more and more corporate social responsibility policies and active practices by business and the involvement of the United Nations in establishing international law to clarify this area.