References (33)


Citations (17)



Is the International Court of Justice Biased?

Eric A. Posner

University of Chicago - Law School

Miguel de Figueiredo

University of California, Berkeley; Yale University - Law School

December 2004

U Chicago Law & Economics, Olin Working Paper No. 234

The International Court of Justice has jurisdiction over disputes between nations, and has decided dozens of cases since it began operations in 1946. Its defenders argue that the ICJ decides cases impartially and confers legitimacy on the international legal system. Its critics argue that the members of the ICJ vote the interests of the states that appoint them. Prior empirical scholarship is ambiguous. We test the charge of bias using statistical methods. We find strong evidence that (1) judges favor the states that appoint them, and (2) judges favor states whose wealth level is close to that of the judges' own state; and weaker evidence that (3) judges favor states whose political system is similar to that of the judges' own state, and (4) (more weakly) judges favor states whose culture (language and religion) is similar to that of the judges' own state. We find weak or no evidence that judges are influenced by regional and military alignments.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 43

Keywords: international court of justice, ICJ, international law

Open PDF in Browser Download This Paper

Date posted: January 4, 2005  

Suggested Citation

Posner, Eric A. and de Figueiredo, Miguel, Is the International Court of Justice Biased? (December 2004). U Chicago Law & Economics, Olin Working Paper No. 234. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=642581 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.642581

Contact Information

Eric A. Posner (Contact Author)
University of Chicago - Law School ( email )
1111 E. 60th St.
Chicago, IL 60637
United States
773-702-0425 (Phone)
773-702-0730 (Fax)
HOME PAGE: http://www.law.uchicago.edu/faculty/posner-e/
Miguel De Figueiredo
University of California, Berkeley ( email )
Department of Political Science
210 Barrows Hall
Berkeley, CA 94720
United States
Yale University - Law School ( email )
P.O. Box 208215
New Haven, CT 06520-8215
United States
Feedback to SSRN

Paper statistics
Abstract Views: 8,989
Downloads: 1,444
Download Rank: 8,271
References:  33
Citations:  17

© 2016 Social Science Electronic Publishing, Inc. All Rights Reserved.  FAQ   Terms of Use   Privacy Policy   Copyright   Contact Us
This page was processed by apollobot1 in 0.282 seconds