Research Handbooks in International Law series
Edited by Catherine Brölmann and Yannick Radi
Chapter 11: Domestic judicial lawmaking
This contribution to the Research Handbook on the Theory and Practice of International Law-Making discusses the law-making potential of domestic courts. Given the seemingly strict 'dualist' approach of international law to domestic law and domestic court decisions ('merely facts'), the paper demonstrates the modest international law-developing function of domestic courts: it first details their methods in engaging international law, and then discusses the impact of such engagement. It concludes that domestic courts may, in terms of content, fine-tune rules of international law rather than set grand principles. In terms of process, this is done by 'suggesting' the fine-tuning, rather than in any way single-handedly developing international law.
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