UCL Faculty of Laws


The role of form in treaty making

08 February 2017, 6:00 pm–7:15 pm

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International Law Association


UCL Gavin de Beer Lecture Theatre, Anatomy Building, Gower Street

(British Branch) Lecture:

The Role of Form in Treaty Making
by Professor Richard Gardiner

Chaired by Professor Malgosia Fitzmaurice, QML School of Law

This lecture is accredited with 1 CPD hour by the SRA and BSB.

About the lecture

This is an investigation into the extent to which the form of an instrument may still play a part in identifying it as a treaty.  International agreements have been increasingly recognised in recent years in forms which do not fit into the more common traditional modes for recording treaties. Contrasting examples may suggest that the loss of formalities could make it more difficult to be confident in identifying instruments as treaties.  The investigation includes consideration of the status of exchanges of notes in the UK case Ahmad and Aswat v USA [2006] EWHC 2927 and of the criteria applied in assessing whether a document constituted an international agreement in the Award of 29 October 2015 in Philippines v China (Jurisdiction and Admissibility).

About the speaker

Richard Gardiner is now a Visiting Professor at UCL. He practised as a barrister and was a legal adviser at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office before becoming a member of the Faculty of Laws at UCL. His book Treaty Interpretation (OUP, 2nd Edn 2015) will appear in paperback in the spring of 2017.