Is it International Law or Not and Does it Even Matter?

INFORMAL INTERNATIONAL LAWMAKING, J. Pauwelyn, R. Wessel & J. Wouters, eds., Oxford University Press, 2012

47 Pages Posted: 27 Oct 2011 Last revised: 27 Feb 2012

See all articles by Joost Pauwelyn

Joost Pauwelyn

Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (IHEID); Georgetown University Law Centre

Date Written: February 26, 2012

Abstract

Novel, hybrid and informal ways of international and transnational cooperation have emerged. Can the output of this informal cooperation, outside international organizations, involving state and non-state actors and leading to instruments other than formal treaties nonetheless amount to 'international law'? This paper examines whether 'informal international lawmaking' can still lead to international law. Is there a line or grey zone distinguishing law from non-law? What criterion does international law use to distinguish law from non-law? Who has the capacity to make international law? What is the difference between being law, having legal effects and being subject to law? And, perhaps most importantly, does it still matter whether an instrument is classified as inside or outside international law?

Keywords: international law, soft law, informal law, normativity, social norms, rules of recognition, legal facts, legitimacy

Suggested Citation

Pauwelyn, Joost, Is it International Law or Not and Does it Even Matter? (February 26, 2012). INFORMAL INTERNATIONAL LAWMAKING, J. Pauwelyn, R. Wessel & J. Wouters, eds., Oxford University Press, 2012, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1950068 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1950068

Joost Pauwelyn (Contact Author)

Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (IHEID) ( email )

PO Box 136
Geneva, Geneva CH-1211
Switzerland

HOME PAGE: http://graduateinstitute.ch

Georgetown University Law Centre ( email )

600 New Jersey Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001
United States

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