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Conference "Transnational Judicial Dialogue of Domestic Courts on International Organizations"

Increasingly, international organizations have been involved in litigation before domestic courts. In this context, a host of legal issues has become relevant, including the domestic legal personality of international organizations and the scope of their jurisdictional immunities. These questions have given rise to nuanced answers across countries. For example, domestic courts have adopted varying approaches to functional immunity and the need to guarantee the independence of international organizations while simultaneously securing their accountability vis-à-vis affected parties. Though domestic courts decide on some of these issues primarily on the basis of domestic law, which often incorporates international law, there is strong indication that in their decision-making they are also influenced by the decisions and reasoning of courts from other states. This “transnational judicial dialogue” is the central phenomenon to be analyzed during the conference entitled “Transnational Judicial Dialogue of Domestic Courts on International Organizations”.

The conference was hosted by Prof. August Reinisch on Monday, 23 April 2011 at the University of Vienna Faculty of Law. The conference is part of an international collaborative research effort under the ESF (European Science Foundation) sponsored project “10-ECRP-028 International law through the national prism: the impact of judicial dialogue”.

The conference brought together legal scholars from various regions of the world to explore domestic court decisions concerning the domestic legal personality and the privileges and jurisdictional immunities of international organizations in general and from the perspective of a possible “transnational judicial dialogue”. The conference focused on domestic court decisions from the following countries: Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Greece, India, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, the Philippines, the Russian Federation, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States of America. This selection of countries was mainly based on the amount of available relevant case-law. The conference is expected to lead to an edited volume by the end of 2013.

International Law in Austrian Courts

University of Vienna
Department for European, International and Comparative Law

Schottenbastei 10-16
A-1010 Vienna
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