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University of Leeds: International Law and Global Governance

Institution University of Leeds
Department School of Law
Telephone (0) 113 343 7573
Study type Taught


This course will enhance your understanding and challenge preconceptions of the complex legal and political nature of international law-making and governance.

We'll ask critical questions and raise strategies for a global order based on equity, sustainability, social justice, security and human rights at a time of global conflict, climate emergency and mass migration.

Taking a dynamic and responsive approach to contemporary global challenges, it aims to explore the often-competing concepts that infuse the theories and practice of international law. You’ll develop specialised knowledge of the most pressing and challenging aspects of this area of law and consider how States and intergovernmental bodies may respond.

You’ll examine topics such as the law of the sea, use of force, climate change, global health governance and international justice, which raise urgent questions about the effectiveness of current governance and regulatory regimes worldwide.

You’ll have the opportunity to:

  • critically examine and apply the policies, theories, principles, and provisions of international law to novel problems, real-world, and hypothetical scenarios

  • consider the impact of legal and political institutions such as the UN Security Council and the International Court of Justice

  • investigate the dynamics of power relations among states and between states and non-state actors

International law is increasingly a concern for a wide range of stakeholders, whether public or private bodies, international or national organisations and institutions.

Given contemporary and future global challenges such as protecting human rights and security and conserving natural resources, the significance of global governance, as well as its contestation, is growing in a multipolar world.


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