Research Prizes

Marcel M.T.A. Brus
PhD dissertation:
Third Party Dispute Settlement in an Interdependent World. Developing a Theoretical framework

The author examined the role and importance, within international law, of procedures for the peaceful settlement of disputes where it is necessary to involve a third party as the states involved in the dispute are not able to reach a satisfactory solution themselves. The fall of the Berlin Wall was not merely a liberation, but at the same time indicated the end of a relatively stable situation and a fundamental change in the conditions of stability and predictability in the international community. New indicators need to be found in order to define permissible and impermissible behaviour. In order to answer the question as to whether the law could play the role of touchstone in the international community as well, the author has endeavoured to analyse the character of the system that forms international law and the hereto associated conditions which the international law system must meet in order to assume this important role as point of reference for such norms. The central theme chosen for this was the administration of justice and the question of to which conditions states would be prepared to accede in submitting themselves, to a greater extent than hitherto, in the administration of justice. The conclusion is that this is very closely associated with further development of procedures for legislation and the supervision of compliance with international law. These procedures, taken together with the administration of justice, must guarantee the legitimacy and integrity of the law. It is only when international law is experienced as legitimate and as having integrity that states will voluntarily subject themselves to it and only then can international law play an important stabilising and predictable role in the international community.

University Leiden, Faculty of Jurisprudence
Supervisor: Prof. Mr. P.H. Kooijmans