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Disputation: Johann Ruben Leiss

Master of Laws Johann Ruben Leiss at Department of Private Law will be defending the thesis: COURTS AND SOURCES - On the Systemic Relevance of Article 38 ICJ Statute for ‘Global Adjudication’ for the degree of Ph.D.

Johann Ruben Leiss

Photo: UiO

Trial lecture - time and place

Feb. 8, 2019 10:15 AM - 11:00 AM, Professorboligen    

Adjudication committee

  • Professor Eirik Bjørge, University of Bristol (leader)
  • Professor Paolo Palchetti, University of Macerata (1. opponent)
  • Professor Hélène Tigroudja, Faculté de droit d'Aix-en-Provence (2. opponent)

Chair of defence

Dean Dag Michalsen


  • Professor Mads Andenæs
  • Professor Andreas L. Paulus


This thesis explores the role of Article 38 ICJ Statute as a framework for the use of judicial decisions in international law and the systemic relevance of this provision for ‘global adjudication’.

The argument of this thesis is that Article 38 ICJ Statute provides a comprehensive normative framework for the use of judicial decisions across systemic boundaries, which integrates all international and domestic judicial bodies.

National and (certain) international judicial decisions constitute elements of customary international law, formative elements of general principles, and subsidiary means for the determination of the rules of law. What emerges is a configuration of a dual nature: in the framework of Article 38 ICJ Statute, ‘global adjudication’ adheres to its heterogeneous and plural character, but it is nevertheless integrated into a bigger whole. In this respect, global adjudication cannot be seen as being uncoupled from a global legal setting that oscillates between unity and fragmentation.

While Article 38 ICJ Statute’s framework is not, in itself, able to make up a ‘global judicial system’, it may pave the way for the incremental construction of a ‘global judicial system’.

Published Jan. 22, 2019 3:30 PM - Last modified Jan. 23, 2020 2:46 PM