Essex Public International Law Lecture: Global Law and the Populist Backlash - How to think about them?

  • Mon 1 Mar 21

    18:00 - 19:00

  • Online

  • Event speaker

    Professor Martti Koskenniemi, University of Helsinki

  • Event type

    Lectures, talks and seminars
    Public International Law Lecture

  • Event organiser

    Essex Law School

Please join us for the latest instalment of the Essex Public International Law Lecture Series.

The Essex Public International Law Lecture Series welcomes you to to the latest instalment presented by Professor Martti Koskenniemi, University of Helsinki and chaired by Dr Emily Jones from the School of Law at the University of Essex.

About the Lecture 

The talk will examine the attacks on global rule by various anti-globalist, neo-nationalist and sometimes far right movements in the developed west. International lawyers are obviously concerned. How should they understand these attacks and respond to them? Many have suggested that the attacks emerge from frustration by those “left behind”. Why is it then that suggestions for reform of international  or European institutions do not interest or engage the critics? Is the reaction above all to economic deprivation or liberal cultural hegemony?  The talk will suggest that at issue is both a problem with the type of knowledge represented by global institutions as well as the monopolisation of the space left for politics in part by regimes of technical expertise and in part by a morality of rights that expects engaging with institutions that are felt as part of the problem. How is global law – or the idea of a “global law” – involved in these debates? Is it possible to imagine a global law that would not appear as a technocratic instrument for a policy of no alternatives? 

About the Speaker

Martti Koskenniemi is Professor of International Law at the University of Helsinki and Director of the Erik Castrén Institute of International Law and Human Rights. He was a member of the Finnish diplomatic service in 1978-1994 and of the International Law Commission (UN) in 2002-2006. He has been a Visiting Global Professor of Law at New York University since 1997 and has held other visiting professorships at many leading universities. He is member of the Institut de droit international and  Fellow of the British Academy. His main publications include From Apology to Utopia; The Structure of International Legal Argument (1989/2005), The Gentle Civilizer of Nations: The Rise and Fall of International Law 1870-1960 (2001) and The Politics of International Law (2011). His history of international legal thought, To the Uttermost Parts of the Earth: Legal Imagination and International Power 1300-1870, will be published in 2021. 

About the Essex Public International Law Lecture Series

The Essex Public International Law lecture series is founded, hosted and co-chaired by Dr Meagan Wong and Dr Emily Jones based in the School of Law. This is a weekly lecture series featuring judges of international courts and tribunals, leading academics, and practitioners of international law from governmental service, international organizations, and private practice from across the globe. The series prides itself on building on two important intellectual traditions of international law: formalism and international legal practice, and international legal theory including postcolonial and feminist perspectives. 

We welcome all students, academics, practitioners and legal advisors to join us.

How to register

You can register here for the event which will be held on zoom.

For further information

Please contact Dr Meagan Wong, meagan.wong@essex.ac.uk and Dr Emily Jones, e.jones@essex.ac.uk.