Cohen elected to American Journal of International Law Board of Editors

Delighted to congratulate our own Professor Harlan G. Cohen on his election to the Board of Editors of the American Journal of International Law.

AJIL, as it’s known, is the flagship publication of the Washington, D.C.-based American Society of International Law. Both were founded in 1907, with U.S. Secretary of State Elihu Root serving as ASIL’s 1st President, and scholar-diplomat James Brown Scott serving as AJIL‘s 1st top editor. Today, the quarterly Journal feature articles, editorials, and notes and comments by pre-eminent scholars. It’s not only one of the oldest, but also one of the most-cited peer-reviewed journals in international law and international relations.

Cohen’s election came earlier this month, when the AJIL Board met during ASIL’s Annual Meeting. It’s a well deserved honor for Cohen, who’s served for a number of years as Managing Editor of AJIL Unbound, the journal’s online platform, and held several ASIL leadership positions.

A member of our University of Georgia School of Law faculty since 2007, Cohen publishes and teaches in a range of international law areas, including trade, foreign affairs, global governance, and human rights. He is the inaugural holder of the Gabriel M. Wilner/UGA Foundation Professorship in International Law.

He contributes immensely to the initiatives of the law school’s Dean Rusk International Law Center, serving, among other things, as faculty advisor to our Georgia Journal of International & Comparative Law (he was a principal organizer this academic year of the Georgia Law-International Committee of the Red Cross conference on the ICRC’s 2016 Commentary) and leader of our 10th International Law Colloquium series.

Alums Kaitlin Ball and Eric Heath publish in International Legal Materials

Delighted to see the bylines of 2 recent graduates of the University of Georgia School of Law in the newest edition of International Legal Materials.

An American Society of International Law publication, ILM reprints decisions, treaties, and other newly issued documents reflecting important developments in international law. Each is preceded by an Introductory Note which explains and analyzes the document. Contributing such Notes to Volume 56, Issue 1, of ILM –  available online via open access for a limited period – are:

Kaitlin M. Ball (J.D. 2014), who is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Politics & International Studies, University of Cambridge, England. While at Georgia Law, Kaitlin served as Student President of the worldwide International Law Students Association, and was a Global Extern at the U.S. Department of State Office of Legal Adviser for Private International Law, at the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe mission in Sarajevo, Bosnia, and at the nongovernmental organization Human Rights League in Bratislava, Slovakia. Her ILM Introductory Note is entitled “African Union Convention on Cyber Security and Personal Data Protection.”

Eric A. Heath (J.D. 2015), who serves on the Legislative Staff of U.S. Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-Pennsylvania) in Washington, D.C. Immediately before taking that position, Eric served as an ASIL Fellow and also earned his LL.M. degree in International Economic Law from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. While at Georgia Law, he was a Global Extern at UNESCO, in Paris, France, and published in our Georgia Journal of International & Comparative Law. His ILM Introductory Note is entitled “Amendment to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer (Kigali Amendment).”

Center staffer Doty elected to leadership of ASIL Lieber Society

On the eve of the 111th Annual Meeting of the American Society of International Law, our staffer Kathleen A. Doty has been elected the Vice Chair of the Lieber Society, ASIL’s principal Interest Group pertaining to the laws of war.

Doty, who is Director of Global Practice Preparation here at the Dean Rusk International Law Center, University of Georgia School of Law, will serve a 3-year term. Her duties will include assisting the Lieber Society – named after Francis Lieber, who, on President Abraham Lincoln’s orders, wrote the 1st laws-of-war code – in organizing conferences and other discussions among practitioners, academics and policymakers in the law of armed conflict/international humanitarian law, and related laws.

Doty also serves as Chair of ASIL’s Nonproliferation, Arms Control and Disarmament Interest Group. Before joining our Center, she was an Assistant Counsel for Arms Control and International Law at the Office of the General Counsel, Strategic Systems Programs, at the U.S. Department of the Navy in Washington.

The Dean Rusk International Law Center frequently joins with ASIL in its initiatives, thanks to an Academic Partnership between the century-old learned society and the University of Georgia School of Law.

Distinguished alumna Ertharin Cousin joins our Center Council

We are deeply honored to announce that one of our distinguished international law alumnae, Ertharin Cousin, has become a member of our Dean Rusk International Law Center Council.

Cousin has just completed a five-year term as Executive Director of the United Nations’ World Food Programme. In that role, she led the world’s largest humanitarian organization. Founded in 1961, WFP has more than 11,000 staffers, who combat hunger and food insecurity on behalf of more than 80 million persons in 82 countries. (credit for photo above)

She earned her J.D. degree from the University of Georgia School of Law in 1982. While here, she took international law classes with our Center’s namesake, Dean Rusk, who was a Georgia Law professor for many years after serving in the Kennedy and Johnson administrations as the United States’ second-longest-serving Secretary of State. Cousin also holds a B.A. degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and was one of the first women to graduate from Lane Tech, a prestigious and traditionally male-only public high school in the same city.

She returned to Georgia Law’s Athens campus last month to receive our alum association’s Distinguished Service Scroll Award. While here, she discussed her work at WFP and her ongoing commitment to end hunger to a group of students now enrolled in international law classes. Cousin stressed that even as direct food aid was provided in the short term, over the long term communities must be given opportunities to provided for themselves, remarking:

“I never met a mother in all the places I’ve visited who wanted to stand in line to feed her children.”

Anticipating her departure from WFP, which took place on April 4, Cousin told students that she planned to continue strategizing to bring an end to hunger as a Visiting Fellow at Stanford’s Freeman Spogli Institute. She said:

“I’m just changing chairs.”

Immediately before taking up the post at WFP, Cousin served in Rome, by appointment of President Barack Obama, as the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Agencies for Food and Agriculture, and as head of the U.S. Mission to the U.N. Agencies in Rome. Her career also included many private- and public-sector posts. During the centennial Olympic Games, held in 1996 in Atlanta, she served as Senior Advisor to Secretary of State Warren Christopher.

In becoming a member of the Dean Rusk International Law Center Council, Cousin joins other Georgia Law graduates, faculty members, and friends who advise and support the work of the Center.

New book on arbitration by Professor Won Kidane, Georgia Law LLM alum

Pleased to announce the publication of a book by our alumnus, Won L. Kidane (left), an Associate Professor at Seattle University School of Law in Washington state.

The Culture of International Arbitration has just been released by Oxford University Press. It’s the 4th book by Kidane, who earned his Georgia Law LL.M. degree in 1997; in 2001, he earned a J.D. degree from the University of Illinois. He was a 2014 Fulbright Scholar in Ethiopia, where he’d completed his initial legal studies in 1993. Kidane practiced at two Washington, D.C., law firms and taught at Penn State’s Dickinson School of Law before joining the faculty at Seattle, where he teaches international arbitration and immigration law.

Here’s a description of his new book:

Although international arbitration has emerged as a credible means of resolution of transnational disputes involving parties from diverse cultures, the effects of culture on the accuracy, efficiency, fairness, and legitimacy of international arbitration is a surprisingly neglected topic within the existing literature. The Culture of International Arbitration fills that gap by providing an in-depth study of the role of culture in modern day arbitral proceedings. It contains a detailed analysis of how cultural miscommunication affects the accuracy, efficiency, fairness, and legitimacy in both commercial and investment arbitration when the arbitrators and the parties, their counsel and witnesses come from diverse legal traditions and cultures. The book provides a comprehensive definition of culture, and methodically documents and examines the epistemology of determining facts in various legal traditions and how the mixing of traditions influences the outcome. By so doing, the book demonstrates the acute need for increasing cultural diversity among arbitrators and counsel while securing appropriate levels of cultural competence. To provide an accurate picture, Kidane conducted interviews with leading international jurists from diverse legal traditions with first-hand experience of the complicating effects of culture in legal proceedings. Given the insights and information on the rules and expectations of the various legal traditions and their convergence in modern day international arbitration practice, this book challenges assumptions and can offer a unique and useful perspective to all practitioners, academics, policy makers, students of international arbitration.

Distinguished alumnus Jean-Marie Henckaerts joins our Center Council

Honored to announce that one of our distinguished international law alumni, Dr. Jean-Marie Henckaerts, has become a member of our Dean Rusk International Law Center Council. Henckaerts earned his Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree here at the University of Georgia School of Law in 1990.

Based in Geneva, Switzerland, Henckaerts is Legal Adviser in the Legal Division of the International Committee of the Red Cross. In that capacity, he leads the unit in charge of ICRC’s ongoing project of updating its midtwentieth-century Commentaries on the 1949 Geneva Conventions and the Additional Protocols of 1977.

Last September, publication of the Commentary on the First Geneva Convention was marked by a daylong conference here in Athens. Henckaerts keynoted the event (above), and nearly 2 dozen other experts in international humanitarian law took part in public and closed-door discussions (prior posts). Cosponsoring with our Center were the ICRC and the Georgia Journal of International & Comparative Law, the 45-year-old review for which Henckaerts once served as an Associate Editor.

The Commentary on the Second Geneva Convention is due for release in early May, and will be launched via an event livestreamed from Geneva on May 4.

Henckaerts came to Georgia Law from Belgium, where he’d completed a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B.) at Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Thereafter, he moved to Washington, D.C., earning an S.J.D. degree in international law from George Washington University Law School.

As described in a post marking its inaugural meeting last year, the Dean Rusk International Law Center Council is made up of faculty members, alumni/ae, and others who advise and support the work of the Center.

“We have come a long way baby!” participant Işıl Aral on recent IntLawGrrls conference at Georgia Law

Having recently hosted IntLawGrrls! 10th Birthday Conference, a 2-day gathering of nearly a hundred academics and advocates from around the world, it is our great pleasure to cross-post this dispatch on the conference by one of the presenters, Işıl Aral (right), who is undertaking Ph.D. studies in unconstitutional changes of government and international legal theory at the University of Manchester, England. The post and video 1st appeared at the website of the Manchester-based Women in International Law Network, of which Işıl is a co-founder. She writes:

IntLawGrrls celebrated its 10th year anniversary on the 3rd of March 2017 with a Conference at the University of Georgia. The Conference opened on the 2nd of March with the screening of Sundance-selected documentary 500 Years directed by Pamela Yates, shedding light on the resistance of Mayan people against the violent and repressive military measures of the Guatemalan government in recent history. The next day, all participants gathered at the Dean Rusk International Law Center at the University of Georgia. With more than 60 presentations, the Conference offered a great range of subject diversity and women took the floor to have their say on almost every subject of international law. This diversity was equally valid for the participants, who had travelled from all around world including from Japan, Australia, Denmark, Kosovo, North and South America.

As a PhD student, it was a truly inspiring experience to be surrounded by so many accomplished women and to meet other young lawyers and academics. The balance of each panel was carefully constructed to mix early career and senior academics. I had the privilege of sharing the panel with distinguished professors and senior scholars, and to receive constructive feedback on my paper. Each panel enabled deep discussions and was a great opportunity to exchange ideas for all. The lunchtime panel was opened with the remarks of IntLawGrrls’ founder Diane Marie Amann and, as can be seen in the video, she explained the creation of the Blog and how she launched it by accident!

It was also a great pleasure to listen to the plenary session where Beth Van Schaack, Mary Dudziak, Catherine Powell, Lucinda Low, Jaya Ramji-Nogales and Patricia Wald discussed “Strategies to Promote Women’s Participation in Shaping International Law and Policy amid the Global Emergence of Antiglobalism”. When Lucinda Low, the president of the American Society of International Law, took the floor, her first remarks to celebrate the success of women who occupy prominent positions today reflected the difficulty of that struggle:

“We have come a long way baby!”

I would like to thank Diane Marie Amann for this wonderful Conference and also Kathleen Doty and Britney Hardweare who attended to every second we spent in Georgia. Special thanks again to Jaya Ramji-Nogales and Beth Van Schaack for taking the time to take part in an interview with WILNET, to tell us how the Blog came into being, and its journey to date.

IntLawGrrls is much more than a blog; it is a driving force that empowers women in international law from all backgrounds and at any stage of their career. The Blog is a clear example that international law does not only have ‘founding fathers’; women too take the lead to become founding mothers of wonderful initiatives!

Please watch the video to listen to Diane Marie Amann telling the story of IntLawGrrls, Karen Bravo commemorating late members of IntLawGrrls, Lucinda Low explaining how ASIL changed in terms of gender equality over the years, and finally Jaya Ramji-Nogales and Beth Van Schaack explaining how the Blog came into being and how it evolved over the years.

(also reposted at IntLawGrrls blog)