Research Handbook on International Water Law
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Research Handbook on International Water Law

Edited by Stephen C. McCaffrey, Christina Leb and Riley T. Denoon

The Research Handbook on International Water Law surveys the field of the law of shared freshwater resources. In some thirty chapters, it covers subjects ranging from the general principles operative in the field and international groundwater law to the human right to water and whether international water law is prepared to cope with climate disruption. The authors are internationally recognized experts in the field, most with years of experience. The Research Handbook is edited by three scholars and practitioners whose publications and work deal with the law of international watercourses.
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Chapter 18: The role of scientific and technical experts

Cicely O. Parseghian and Benjamin K. Guthrie

Abstract

Disputes involving bodies of water, especially cases involving allegations of transboundary environmental harm, often present complex scientific or technical questions and require the involvement of scientific or technical experts. This chapter addresses the involvement of such experts in cases before international tribunals, especially the International Court of Justice. It focuses on three major themes. First, how do tribunals integrate technical experts into the dispute resolution process? Are the experts court-appointed, party-appointed, or both, and how do they participate? Second, how should parties and counsel work with and present their own party-appointed experts in order to effectively make their case? Third, given past practice and disagreements regarding the role and independence of experts, how can tribunals be expected to handle the scientific and technical aspects of complex cases going forward?

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