Columbia International Affairs Online: Policy Briefs

CIAO DATE: 04/2012

The public law challenge: Killing or rethinking international investment law?

Stephan W. Schill

January 2012

Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment


The current legitimacy crisis of international investment law results primarily from the friction investor-state arbitration creates with domestic public law values. As a response, arbitrators should enculturate public law thinking. They should draw on comparative public law when applying investment treaties and reconsider their role as public law adjudicators with concomitant responsibilities for the entire system of international investment protection.