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Professor Christian J Tams

Director of the GCILS

Christian J. Tams is Professor of International Law at the University of Glasgow and one of the directors of the GCILS. He also convenes the dual degree programme in international economic law. Christian is an expert in public international law, with special expertise in the law of treaties, State responsibility, dispute settlement and investment law. He studied law at the universities of Kiel, Lyon III, and Cambridge (LLM, 2000; PhD, 2004), and is a qualified German lawyer (admitted in 2005). Before joining the School of Law he was an assistant professor at the Walther Schücking Institute of International Law at the University of Kiel.

Christian is the review editor of the European Journal of International Law, a member of the Council of the German Society of International Law and of the Standing Steering Group of the International Law Association, and an emeritus fellow of the Young Academy of Scotland. Over the past years, has held visiting positions at universities in France, China, Japan, and Austria; and in 2018, directed the Centre of Research and Studies at The Hague Academy of International Law. An academic member of Matrix Chambers London, Christian is frequently instructed in international litigation, and in recent years, has acted in proceedings before the International Court of Justice, the Iran-US Claims Tribunal, and arbitral tribunals.


‘League of Nations’

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World War I to World War II Published under the auspices of the Max Planck Foundation for International Peace and the Rule of Law under the direction of Rüdiger Wolfrum.

in R. Wolfrum (ed) Max Planck Encyclopaedia of Public International Law (OUP, 2006)

The Role of Treaties in Pursuing the Objectives of the UN Charter: The Text and the Practice

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The United Nations is a vital part of the international order. Yet this book argues that the greatest contribution of the UN is not what it has achieved (improvements in health and economic development, for example) or avoided (global war, say, or the use of weapons of mass destruction). It is, instead, the process through which the UN has transformed the structure of international law to expand the range and depth of subjects covered by treaties. This handbook offers the first sustained analysis of the UN as a forum in which and an institution through which treaties are negotiated and implemented. Chapters are written by authors from different fields, including academics and practitioners; lawyers and specialists from other social sciences (international relations, history, and science); professionals with an established reputation in the field; younger researchers and diplomats involved in the negotiation of multilateral treaties; and scholars with a broader view on the issues involved. The volume thus provides unique insights into UN treaty-making. Through the thematic and technical parts, it also offers a lens through which to view challenges lying ahead and the possibilities and limitations of this understudied aspect of international law and relations.

In: Chesterman, S., Malone, D. M. and Villalpando, S. (eds.) The Oxford Handbook on United Nations Treaties


The International Community

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Concepts allow us to know, understand, think, do and change international law. This book, with sixty chapters by leading scholars, provides a nuanced guide to those concepts of historical significance for international law, as well as those that have become central to how we think about the discipline. In select cases this book also offers some new concepts, seeking to address familiar concerns that have not been fully articulated within the discipline. This unique book is the first expansive exploration of concepts that have become historically central to the discipline. It allows us to appreciate how order, struggle and change play out in international law and legal thought, and how these concerns of power implicate ethical considerations. Embracing a wide range of historical and theoretical approaches, this book hopes to ignite a renewed, fertile engagement between our concepts and the contemporary, precarious, conditions of international legal life. Thought-provoking, original and engaging, this book is essential reading for researchers, postgraduates and doctoral students in international law, legal history and legal theory. Academics in international relations, history, sociology and political thought will also find this an essential read.

In: D'Aspremont, J. and Singh, S. (eds.) Concepts for International Law: Contributions to Disciplinary Thought.

978 1 78347 467 7

The Statute of the International Court of Justice (3rd Edition): A Commentary

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The International Court of Justice is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations and plays a central role in both the peaceful settlement of international disputes and the development of international law. This comprehensive Commentary on the Statute of the International Court of Justice analyses in detail not only the Statute of the Court itself but also the related provisions of the United Nations Charter as well as the relevant provisions of the Court's Rules of Procedure.


Andreas Zimmermann
Karin Oellers-Frahm
Christian Tomuschat

Self-Defence against Non-State Actors

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From the Max Planck trialogues series, this book provides an in-depth and up-to-date study of the international law on self-defence against non-State actors. The 'trialogical' method – setting out three complementary, at times ’competing’ perspectives, by leading scholars, on the law of self-defence – makes for a novel and unique format that reacts to shifting world order. The book is relevant for academics and students of international law, as well as for practitioners advising governments and non-State actors on the rules governing recourse to force.


Mary Ellen O'Connell
Dire D Tladi

Legacies of the Permanent Court of International Justice

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Legacies of the Permanent Court of International Justice assesses the continuing relevance of the first 'world court'. Active for merely 2 decades, and dissolved rather quietly in 1945/46 to be replaced by the International Court of Justice, the PCIJ, for better or worse, has shaped our thinking about binding legal dispute resolution. The contributions to this book trace the PCIJ's impact on procedural and substantive aspects of international law and on the development of the international judicial function.

Malgosia Fitzmaurice