Majority and Individual Opinions: Constructive Dialogue or the Worst of Two Worlds?

Forthcoming, Research Handbook on the International Court of Justice (Elgar).

PluriCourts Research Paper

11 Pages Posted: 12 Apr 2019

See all articles by Geir Ulfstein

Geir Ulfstein

Faculty of Law, University of Oslo; Pluricourts

Date Written: April 10, 2019

Abstract

This article examines the significance of the ICJ’s rules and practices for the Court’s internal working; its settlement of disputes; clarification and development of international law; and the implications for the independence of the ICJ. It is concluded that the Court’s procedures have not prevented the rendering of many, diverse and lengthy individual opinions. Such multi-faceted decisions may at its best be informative and constructive, but at its worst it may result in short and vague majority decisions combined with a split Court comprising diversified individual opinions. This may negatively affect compliance by the disputing parties, as well as clarification and development of the law. The politicized climate of the election of ICJ judges may prevent re-election of judges and thereby undermine the independence of the Court. One possibility would be that the General Assembly and the Security Council institute a practice of denying re-election of judges.

Keywords: international law, dispute settlement, legitimacy, international courts, International Court of Justice

JEL Classification: K33

Suggested Citation

Ulfstein, Geir, Majority and Individual Opinions: Constructive Dialogue or the Worst of Two Worlds? (April 10, 2019). Forthcoming, Research Handbook on the International Court of Justice (Elgar).; PluriCourts Research Paper . Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3370897 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3370897

Geir Ulfstein (Contact Author)

Faculty of Law, University of Oslo ( email )

PO Box 6706 St Olavsplass
Oslo, 0130
Norway

Pluricourts

Norway

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
26
Abstract Views
204
PlumX Metrics