Legal Reading group: 'Let’s (Not) (Dis)Agree to Disagree!? Some Thoughts on the "Dispute" Requirement in International Adjudication'

Laura Letourneau-Tremblay introduces the paper 'Let’s (Not) (Dis)Agree to Disagree!? Some Thoughts on the "Dispute" Requirement in International Adjudication' by Andreas Kulick.

Important information about the legal reading group

Due to current circumstances the legal reading group will be held as an online video conference using Zoom. Please email Laura Letourneau-Tremblay for an online invite so you can join the legal reading group.


International courts and tribunals only enjoy jurisdiction to settle a ‘dispute’. ‘Dispute’ requires disagreement. However, what if the parties disagree over whether there actually exists such disagreement? What if, before the International Court of Justice, the respondent argues that there is no ‘dispute’ because it declined to react to the applicant’s contentions? In other words, can a disputing party avoid a dispute by playing dead? On the other hand, where to draw the line in order to prevent the applicant from seizing an international court or tribunal where there is in fact no real disagreement among the parties? This article critically assesses the Court’s case law on the ‘dispute’ requirement and argues for a fragmented approach to ‘dispute’ in international adjudication that carefully defines this jurisdictional requirement along the lines of the judicial function of the respective international judicial dispute settlement forum.

The article is available here.


The legal reading group meets on a regular basis to discuss leading publications on international courts and tribunals. The aim is to develop our understanding of an article/book chapter and how it might be relevant for our own projects, through sharing insights on its substance, merits, and broader context. The reading group managed by PluriCourts, but open to everyone that is interested.

Published Feb. 14, 2020 1:19 PM - Last modified Mar. 20, 2020 4:15 PM