UCL Faculty of Laws


National Security and International Trade - Challenges and Recent Developments

22 January 2020, 6:00 pm–7:00 pm

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This lecture is part of the International Law Association (British Branch) Lecture Series

Event Information

Open to



UCL Laws


UCL Laws (Gideon Schreier LT)
Bentham House
Endsleigh Gardens

Speaker: Dr Isabelle Van Damme (Van Bael & Bellis)
Chair: Dr Danae Azaria (UCL Laws)

About this event

The express invocation of Article XXI of the GATT 1994 by defendants in various types of dispute signals that WTO Members might be shifting in their perception of the function of dispute settlement and has caused a revising of the balance of powers between the nation State and international organisations. This lecture will focus on the interplay between international trade regulation and the protection of essential security interests, reflecting on past and ongoing developments in WTO dispute settlement as well as the systemic consequences of those developments for the multilateral trading system.

About the speaker

Dr Isabelle Van Damme is Counsel at Van Bael & Bellis and a Member of the Brussels Bar. Her practice focuses on WTO law, EU law, and public international law. Isabelle regularly advises governments and represents States and individuals before international courts and tribunals. In the area of trade law, Isabelle has represented WTO Members before WTO panels and the Appellate Body in numerous dispute settlement proceedings. She has also represented clients in cases before the Court of Justice of the European Union. Earlier in her career, Isabelle was a référendaire in the chambers of Advocate General Sharpston, at the Court of Justice of the European Union, worked at a Geneva-based firm specialised in WTO law and taught at the University of Cambridge, Clare College. She has also taught at the Université Catholique de Louvain, KU Leuven, the World Trade Institute and the University of Antwerp. She holds degrees from the University of Ghent (Bachelor of Law, Master of Laws), Georgetown University Law Center (LL.M.) and the University of Cambridge (Ph.D. in Law). Isabelle has published widely on WTO law, EU law and public international law. Her main publications include a monograph on Treaty Interpretation by the WTO Appellate Body (Oxford University Press). She is also working on a second edition of The Oxford Handbook of International Trade Law (Oxford University Press) and A Commentary on the WTO Anti-Dumping Agreement (Cambridge University Press).

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