International Law at the Tipping Point

Tipping point: ‘the moment of critical mass, the threshold, the boiling point’ (Gladwell, 2000)

Irreversible climate change. Ecosystem collapse and mass extinction of plant and animal species. Renewed threat of a nuclear arms race. Mass migration. Widespread famine. Each has been referred to as a ‘tipping point’ in this age of the anthropocene. What role does international law play when the natural world and human society is at, or nearing, such tipping points? And is international law itself at a tipping point? At the same time as it expands to cover all areas of human activity as an essential tool for bringing order to a rapidly globalising world, it is also the target of significant attacks from different angles – with regard to its general utility, its capacity to order our lives effectively, and its potential for creating an unaccountable leviathan limiting freedom. Increasing polarisation seems to indicate that the system will either gain greater acceptance as an ordering principle, or collapse under the fragmenting tendencies of re-nationalisation of powers and decision-making, ultimately declining as a normative ideal.

The ILA British Branch Spring Conference aims to bring together practitioners and scholars of international law to discuss these tendencies in different specialised areas, and to assess the state of the law and the system. The conference will conclude with a keynote speech by Sir Frank Berman KCMG QC, Essex Court Chambers and former FCO Legal Adviser, introduced by the Chair of the ILA Executive Council, the Rt Hon Lord Mance.

Conference Schedule 

PLEASE NOTE : Registration has now closed.

 ILA membersnon ILA members
Full time practitioners£80£100
Full time academics£60£70

Drinks reception:
Codrington Library at All Souls College

Conference Dinner:
Dining Hall at All Souls College (ticketed)

If you require accommodation, please visit this website. Alternative accommodation can also be found at the University Club and Rewley House.

Directions to All Souls College – click here.