ESIL’s Young Scholar Prize awarded to Joshua Paine’s article

8 September 2017

It is with great pleasure to announce that the MPI’s Senior Research Fellow, Joshua Paine, has been selected as the 2017 winner of the European Society of International Law’s Young Scholar Prize for his paper entitled “Evaluating the Distinctive Contribution of International Adjudication as a Global Public Good”.

The ESIL’s Young Scholar Prize is awarded for the best paper submitted to the ESIL annual conference by an early-career scholar (defined as within two years of their PhD defence). As part of the Prize, and subject to review, Josh’s paper will be published in the European Journal of International Law. The Institute would like to extend its warmest congratulations.

“Evaluating the Distinctive Contribution of International Adjudication as a Global Public Good”

By Joshua Paine, Senior Research Fellow, Max Planck Institute Luxembourg for Procedural Law


This paper considers whether international adjudication might qualify as a global public good. It does this by analysing three functions, or ends and purposes, which are served by many international adjudicatory mechanisms: the peaceful settlement of international disputes; the clarification and adaptation of international law; and the monitoring of compliance with, and enforcement of, international cooperative regimes. The paper also considers a fourth adjudicatory function which is not necessarily an instance of adjudication itself constituting a global public good but is squarely relevant to the topic, namely the potential for international adjudication to help ensure accountability and due process in relation to efforts to provide global public goods. Overall, I find that international adjudication will often fail to qualify as a global public good because many of the benefits produced by it are not sufficiently widely shared to warrant such a characterisation. Nevertheless, the paper suggests that international adjudication makes a distinctive contribution to producing certain outcomes which benefit a diverse range of actors and whose absence would be missed. The paper also highlights that arguments in favour of viewing international adjudication as a global public good are dependent on an evaluation of whether similar outcomes could be produced through alternative processes, such as compliance review or adjudication by national courts.