International Customary Law and Articulation Theories: an Economic Analysis

32 Pages Posted: 7 Oct 2002  

Vincy Fon

George Washington University - Department of Economics

Francesco Parisi

University of Minnesota - Law School; University of Bologna

Abstract

Notable scholars have considered the conditions under which rules of customary law can emerge spontaneously through the voluntary interaction and exchange of states in the international community. In this paper, we model the process of international customary law formation under different regimes. We start by considering a traditional model of customary law where legal rules emerge out of past practice. Once established by practice, legal customs enjoy reciprocal application among the states. Our model reveals the limits of the process of custom formation when choices are sequential and players know their roles at the time of strategy selection. After studying the effect of reciprocity, we examine the effects of "articulation" theories, which allow states to commit publicly to a strategy before their respective roles are unveiled. The welfare analysis of the alternative mechanisms of custom formation reveals the advantages and limits of the various processes of customary law formation.

Keywords: Customary law, Custom Formation, Articulation, Norms

JEL Classification: K10, K33, D70

Suggested Citation

Fon, Vincy and Parisi, Francesco, International Customary Law and Articulation Theories: an Economic Analysis. International Law and Management Review, Vol. 2, p. , 2007; George Mason Law & Economics Research Paper No. 02-24; Minnesota Legal Studies Research Paper No. 07-28. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=335220 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.335220

Vincy Fon (Contact Author)

George Washington University - Department of Economics ( email )

2115 G Street, N.W.
Monroe Hall, #366
Washington, DC 20052
United States
202-994-7580 (Phone)
202-994-6147 (Fax)

Francesco Parisi

University of Minnesota - Law School ( email )

229 19th Avenue South
Minneapolis, MN 55455
United States

University of Bologna ( email )

Piazza Scaravilli 1
40126 Bologna, fc 47100
Italy

Paper statistics

Downloads
717
Rank
27,621
Abstract Views
3,911