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					                                                                       Webster Vienna
                                                                         Course Syllabus

Course               INTL 2030/50 – International Law (Semester Course)

Term                 Spring Semester 2010

Instructor           Name:     Dr. Karin Kneissl
                     Phone:    0676 52 83 104

Course Description   International law is a multi-disciplinary area of studies. It encompasses
                     law, political sciences, history and economics. Participants of this course
                     will deepen their knowledge of the main actors, instruments and themes
                     that have shaped international law.

                     In addition to the necessary basics explained along the lines of the
                     “classic cases” of 20th century international law, attention will be paid to
                     current topics, such as use of force, self-defence, evolution of international
                     humanitarian law, the emergence of soft law etc.

                     A simulated session of an international conference/negotiation process
                     will be done on the occasion of the midterm exam, in order to practice the
                     acquired skills, such as legal interpretation of major political events.

Prerequisites        Curious minds equipped with a sound knowledge of international affairs
                     will discover the many contexts that link international law with today’s
                     world. This course should cover all the main issues of international law in
                     a very intense time-frame. You should have read the assigned chapters
                     before each class. Quick oral exams will precede the sessions.
                     Excellent command of English indispensable. The textbook requires a
                     high level of general knowledge.

Learning Outcomes    Being able to interpret legal texts, such as the UN-Charter, various
                     conventions and disposing of skills to legally analyze political
                     developments and write a briefing-note.

Textbook and other   Antonio Cassese, International Law, Oxford Univ. Press 2005
Materials            Collection of International Law Documents by Evans. Please bring the
                     collection of documents to every session, since we work with
                     the texts in order to exercise interpretation.

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Grading               Class Participation 10%, which includes interaction with guest-speakers,
                      active participation in debates. Two written exams and one simulated
                      conference will be held. For that exercise, most probably a simulated UN-
                      SC meeting, you will have to conduct research on the respective
                      delegation you will represent, prepare for the negotiation and get engaged
                      as a team.
                      The written exams will consist of two knowledge questions and one
                      technical briefing note discussing a case at stake. The written exams and
                      the conference will count for 30% each.

Activities            4 hours class, 12 hours home work (reading). Active inputs in class such
                      as analysis of case studies, discussion with guest speakers. You should
                      follow high-quality reporting on international politics and editorial
                      comments, since we discuss current affairs.

University Policies   Cheating
                      Any student found cheating on any part of the course work (homework
                      assignment, term paper, quiz, exam, etc.) will automatically be given an
                      “F” for the course. Any student found to be helping another student to
                      cheat will likewise be given an “F” for the course. In each case, the
                      student will also be put on disciplinary probation for the remainder of her
                      or his stay at Webster. If the student is found to have engaged in cheating
                      a second time, s/he will be automatically expelled from the University.
                      Class attendance is obligatory. Instructors will take attendance at each
                      class session and reduce a student’s course grade by one-third of a letter
                      grade for each full week of class missed. Any student who misses four or
                      more full weeks of class will automatically be given an “F” for the course.

Course Policies       You are not allowed to miss more than two classes; otherwise you should
                      drop the course.

Weekly Schedule

Week 1                What is international law about ?
                      Introduction to history and different types of international law. Relation
                      between international and municipal law, public international law and
                      private international law. p. 3-71

Week 2                Subjects of International Law: States etc.
                      Case studies of recognition.
                      bring along UN-Charter

Week 3                Sources of International Law: What is customary law ? The concept
                      of ius cogens.

Week 4                What is an international treaty and how is it created?
                      p.153-213. Studying the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaty.

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Week 5        Human Rights and Humanitarian Law. Milestones, concepts and
              current stalemates.
              p. 375-463

Week 6        Written exam; Human Rights Continued

Week 7        International Humanitarian Law: Prisoners of War; Occupation and
              Human Rights. The role of the ICRC. We will study the Four Geneva
              Conventions on IHL 1949.

Week 8        Universality and international law. Role of the UN

Week 9        UN-SC simulated session on a topic to be chosen by the students.

Week 10       International Courts: which types exist – based on UNSC resolutions
              or on statutes.
              Stock-taking of their accomplishments with regard to the evolution
              international penal law.
              p. 435-463. Eventual guest-speaker on the ICC, the drafting of the Rome-

Week 11       Unilateral resort to force, Self-defence, armed reprisals etc.

Week 12       Changing concept of sovereignty. The subjects of international law:
              States and non-State actors. Material will be distributed

Week 13       Protection of the Environment. Progressive development of IL; soft

Week 14       Diplomacy and International law: immunities and privileges. P.98-120

Week 15       Final exam in written form in class

Additional    Meetings can be arranged anytime at my office in room 230.
Information    a. You can contact me via e-mail or in urgent cases by phone if you have
              questions, impediments to attend a class etc.
              b. In case of topical events, we might shift the focus of the one or other
              session and analyze the development at stake

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