Investment Law and Policy

13th Annual Columbia International Investment Conference: “Rethinking International Investment Governance: Principles for the 21st Century”

Date: September 27-28, 2018, 8:30am – 5:30pm
Reception to follow, 5:30-7:30pm, September 28
Location: Faculty House, Columbia University, New York

Rethinking International Investment Governance: Principles for the 21st Century

(Forthcoming, 2018). Rethinking International Investment Governance: Principles for the 21st Century — written over the course of a week by a distinguished group of experts in international economic governance using the Booksprint process  — aims to serve as a practical resource for those interested in the elements of an international investment system that promotes sustainable development and achieves legitimacy by… read more

Categories: Books

Executive Training on Investment Treaties and Arbitration for Government Officials

Date: July 30-August 9, 2018
Location: Columbia Law School, Jerome Greene Hall, Case Lounge

Moving the G20’s Investment Agenda Forward

This policy brief argues that investment policies should be a core item on the agenda of the G20 and its Trade and Investment Working Group in particular. Specifically: The G20 should continue its important work on international investment policy reform and initiate steps to operationalize the Guiding Principles for Global Investment Policymaking. More specifically, the G20… read more

PPPs and ISDS: A Risky Combination

By Brooke Guven and Lise Johnson
May 24, 2018

While governments were traditionally viewed as playing a legitimate and indispensable role in leading the provision of public infrastructure and services, recent years have seen a distinct and increasing turn toward public private partnerships (PPPs) as a way of structuring public infrastructure investments.

Categories: Blog

Clearing the Path: Withdrawal of Consent and Termination as Next Steps for Reforming International Investment Law

This is a crucial moment in international investment policymaking. Two factors have converged, calling for a new direction. First, it has become increasingly difficult to justify investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS); even governments that had been among its strongest proponents are now changing course and have raised a range of fundamental, systemic and inter-related issues relating… read more

Stakeholder Session on UNCITRAL ISDS Reform Process

Date: April 23, 2018, 6:00pm-9:00pm
Location: Regency Room, Grand Hyatt, 109 E 42nd St, New York, NY 10017

Costs and Benefits of Investment Treaties: Practical Considerations for States

This paper analyzes the expected benefits of investment treaties, including: increased inward investment, increased outward investment, and depoliticization of investment disputes. It then considers evidence of the costs of investment treaties, including: litigation, liability, reputational cost, reduced policy space, distorted power dynamics, reduced role for domestic law-making, and uncertainty in the law. The authors set… read more

Crucial Ingredients for Meaningful Reform at UNCITRAL: Withdrawal of Consent to Arbitrate and Termination of Existing Treaties

By Lise Johnson, Lisa Sachs, Brooke Guven, and Jesse Coleman
April 18, 2018

UNCITRAL’s Working Group III has been entrusted with a mandate to explore reform of ISDS, including, potentially, through a multilateral instrument capable of reforming existing treaties. However, these discussions are likely to be slow, and outcomes uncertain. In the meantime, governments and their stakeholders remain tied to an outdated system that is widely acknowledged to be ill-suited for modern investment policy objectives, with increasingly concerning consequences. Two near term options that could accompany longer term reform are (1) a joint instrument on withdrawal of consent to arbitrate; and/or (2) a joint instrument on termination.

Categories: Blog

What Do We Mean by Investment Facilitation?

By Jesse Coleman, Brooke Güven, Lise Johnson, and Lisa Sachs
February 21, 2018

The authors discuss calls for “investment facilitation,” highlighting aspects of the potential investment facilitation agenda that could advance sustainable development and those that may ultimately undermine it.

Categories: Blog