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Justice as Conflict Resolution: Proliferation, Fragmentation and Decentralization of Dispute Settlement in International Trade


  • Ernst-Ulrich Petersmann


Prevention and resolution of conflicts on the basis of agreed rules and just procedures is a common objective of private and public, national and international law (chapter I). The diversity of national and international dispute settlement fora and procedures sets incentives for 'forum shopping' and 'rules shopping' not only in private commercial law (chapter II), but increasingly also in public international economic law (chapter III). Effective litigation strategies must examine the respective (dis)advantages of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) methods and fora (chapter IV). ADR options are increasingly important also for various categories of dispute settlement proceedings in the World Trade Organization (WTO, chapter V). Optimal dispute prevention and dispute settlement strategies require distinguishing the different categories of international trade disputes according to their underlying conflicts of interests, promoting legal consistency between international and domestic dispute settlement proceedings, and 'decentralizing' certain kinds of international economic disputes over private rights (chapter VI). Jurisdictional competition, forum shopping, rules shopping, and the increasing number of mutually conflicting judgments by national and international courts call for international cooperation among judges so as to promote more respect for international law through transnational, judicial networks (chapter VII).

Suggested Citation

  • Ernst-Ulrich Petersmann, 2004. "Justice as Conflict Resolution: Proliferation, Fragmentation and Decentralization of Dispute Settlement in International Trade," EUI-LAW Working Papers 10, European University Institute (EUI), Department of Law.
  • Handle: RePEc:erp:euilaw:p0011

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