Indicators as the Working Language for Interaction Among Regimes
American Society of International Law, Proceedings of the 106th Annual Meeting, Confronting Complexity (Washington, D.C.: ASIL, 2012)
3 Pages Posted: 22 Jun 2013
Date Written: June 20, 2012
This panel is based upon the premise that the use of indicators is an important form of power in global governance, which needs to be addressed from, perhaps even regulated by, international law. I agree with this assessment, but want to focus on a slightly different angle. My starting point is that many of the debates taking place these days on the structure of the international legal system can be usefully understood as problems derived from the interaction among regimes. Climate change, investment protection, humanitarian intervention — all these problems imply the interaction of different legal regimes (domestic, international, or transnational) whose outcomes and effectiveness depend not only on their own "internal" characteristics (that is, intra-regime), but also on the way in which they interact with each other-sometimes bolstering each other's effectiveness, sometimes annulling the very limited results they achieve. In this context, indicators work as a hinge between regimes.
Keywords: international law, indicators, global governance
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