The Judicialization of Investor-State Dispute Resolution: The Way of the Future?

Thursday, May 18, 2017, 12:00PM - 1:30PM

In recent years, the European Union has exercised a leadership role in proposing reforms to the traditional Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) system that aim for “judicialization,” including in the context of the TTIP negotiations with the United States, but also in the EU-Vietnam FTA and Canada-EU CETA. Meanwhile, the US has mainly stayed the course, most recently in the context of the TPP negotiations, using its leadership to improve ISDS but not departing from its fundamentals.

Lately, intergovernmental discussions, spearheaded by the EU and Canada, have taken place considering the establishment of a Multilateral Investment Court. However, while the EU and Canada were able to agree on a more “court-like” system to resolve investment disputes in the recently signed CETA, they cannot achieve this goal without the support of a significant number of capital exporting and capital importing countries.

Even putting aside the many hurdles on the path to implementation of CETA’s new dispute settlement system, the transition to a Multilateral Investment Court raises many systemic issues. The political and practical feasibility of these efforts are ripe for discussion and study.

About the speaker

Céline Lévesque is Full Professor and Dean of the Civil Law Section at the University of Ottawa. Her primary area of research is International Investment Law.  Since joining the University in 1998, Dean Lévesque has written extensively on NAFTA Chapter 11 (Investment) and on the Canadian Foreign Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPA) program.

Dean Lévesque is also a Senior Fellow with CIGI’s International Law Research Program (ILRP). At CIGI, she is contributing to the ILRP’s Investor State Arbitration project. Her current research focuses on the European Union’s latest proposals for a permanent system for the resolution of investor-state disputes.

In 2008-2009, she was a Scholar-in-Residence at the Trade Law Bureau of the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade.  In that capacity, she contributed to the defence of NAFTA Chapter 11 claims and to bilateral investment treaty negotiations.

Prior to joining the University, Dean Lévesque worked at the World Bank in Washington, DC (1995-1998).  Her work concentrated on public-private partnerships in developing countries, especially in Western Africa.

She holds a LL.L. (Ottawa), LL.B. (Dalhousie), LL.M. (College of Europe), M.A. (George Washington).

A light lunch will be served. Please register via email to [email protected].

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