TopModule Codes: LL4109V / LL5109V / LL6109V
Contact Hours: 3-hr weekly seminar
Workload: seminars PLUS writing a research paper on a topic to be identified
Mode of Assessment: Class Participation - 20%; Short Paper and Presentation - 40% [Due: Weeks 7-9 depending on roster of presentation) & Final Reseach Assignment - 40% [Due: Mon, 12 Nov 2018 (9am)]
How does Asia relate to Public International Law and the Global community, and vice-versa?
“Asia and International Law” is a specialist course about PIL in relation to Asia and especially ASEAN. The course begins with theory as well as current and emerging issues, and the colonial history of Western domination. We then focus on the current rise of Asia and ASEAN, and especially new and emerging issues . Students should have an understanding of the basics of public international law and be prepared to identify and undertake a research paper for in-class presentation and assessment.
This seminar explores and maps the connections between public international law and Asia, both currently and historically. The rise of Asia, especially in the wake of the global financial crisis, forms the context of the course. Asia’s continuing economic growth and increasing regionalism marks a contrast to past decades and is leading many to think of a shift in global power. At the same time, relations between major Asian powers between themselves and with the USA are unsettled on some issues whether these relate to territorial claims or global issues such as human rights and the environment. The seminar considers the implications and possible impacts of this projected rise and shift in power on international law, the norms of the international community and the relations between Asia and the Western powers, as well as among Asians inter se.
Aims of the Course
The course is intended for graduate and upper year law students who wish to consider more specialized areas of international law. A knowledge of public international law is a pre-requisite and students should be willing and able to undertake writing an original research paper. The course aims to:
- promote a deeper and contextual reflection of Asia in the ocntext of a changing world order and norms, principles and rules of public internatonal law., drawing on both legal scholarship and writings from other disciplines, such as international relations, regional studies, and history.
- offer increased opportunities for research and writing skills (including problem identification), as well as for discussion and exchange of ideas on current and emerging controversies in Asia; and
- encourafe students to develop a better understanding of legal norms and rules in the context of politics, economic policies and other factors in the region.
Asia and International law is offered regularly, and core elements remain constant. However, as a specialized course, each year’s course also sets out new and different themes reflecting current and emerging trends and concerns across Asia and especially ASEAN. This is to challenge and encourage student thinking and research.
For 2017-18, the course will encourage students to consider working on the following themes and clusters of issues:
1) International Rule of Law in Asia: Regional views and “Eastphalia”. Asian experiences to dispute settlement/ management, including cases brought by ASEAN States to the ICJ.
2) ASEAN: Centrality and the development of norms and institutions. ASEAN Principles of Consensus and Unity. Expansion and Strengthening of the ASEAN Secretariat and Rules.
3) Economic rules and cooperation: Asia support for Global Rules for Economic Investment and/ or Trade. Legal Principles and Dimensions in China’s BRI across Asia: National Economic Reform and the Connections to ASEAN Economic Community
4) Sustainable Development and Environmental Protection. Transboundary Haze Pollution: Managing Beyond Governments. Asian Action and Cooperation on Climate Change
5) Human Rights, Democracy and reform. Free speech and Fake speech. Rakhine State Muslims and Myanmar and the Role of ASEAN. International and regional norms of democracy and governance.
6) Sovereignty and cooperation across borders. Managing the South China Sea after the PCA Decision: The Roles of Law, Politics and Economics Troubles Along the Mekong: Dimensions in International Law