Anthea Roberts masterclass: the investment treaty system - claims and controversies

Surfboard in beach sand protest sign: "No TPP / Stop Secret Trade Deals"

Event details


Date & time

Thursday 08 September 2016


Seminar Room 1.13, Coombs Extension Building (8), Fellows Road, ANU
ANU Canberra


Anthea Roberts



Since the 1990s, an investment treaty system has emerged that is based on thousands of bilateral investment treaties and free trade agreements and hundreds of investor-state arbitrations.

While investment treaties used to be an obscure part of the international legal framework, they are now taking on a more prominent role given the focus on mega-regional agreements like the TPP, TTIP and RCEP.

This masterclass provides an introduction to the investment treaty system, explaining what investment treaties are and why they were introduced, how the system has grown and changed overtime, as well as what controversies the system is facing and how it is responding to criticisms.

Places are capped to 20 due to venue capacity and registration at this webform is required.

Preparatory Readings:

  1. Barton Legum, ‘Investment treaty arbitration: an option not to be overlooked’, International Litigation Strategies and Practice, Barton Legum (editor), American Bar Assocation, Chicago, 2005.

  2. Jason Webb Yackee, ‘Do Bilateral Investment Treaties Promote Foreign Direct Investment? Some Hints from Alternative Evidence’, Virginia Journal of International Law, Volume 51, Issue 2, p. 397-442.

  3. Susan D. Franck, ‘Empirically Evaluating Claims About Investment Treaty Arbitration’, 80 North Carolina Law Review 1 (2007).

  4. UNCTAD World Investment Report 2015 - Reforming International Investment Governance, United Nations Publications, Geneva, 2015.

  5. Pia Eberhardt & Cecilia Olivet, Profiting from injustice: how law firms, arbitrators and financiers are fuelling an investment arbitration boom, Helen Burley (editor), Corporate Europe Observatory and the Transnational Institute, Brussels/Amsterdam, 2012.

About the Speaker

Anthea Roberts is a specialist in public international law, investment treaty law and arbitration and comparative international law. Prior to joining the ANU, Anthea was an Associate Professor at the London School of Economics (2008-2015), a Visiting Professor and Professor at Columbia Law School (2012-2015) and a Visiting Professor at Harvard Law School (2011-2012). She is also a Visiting Professor on the Masters of International Dispute Settlement at the Graduate Institute/University of Geneva.

Anthea has published on a wide range of international law topics in the American Journal of International Law, the European Journal of International Law, the International & Comparative Law Quarterly, the Harvard International Law Journal and the Yale Journal of International Law. She now serves as an editor for the American Journal of International Law, the European Journal of International Law, the Journal of World Trade and Investment and the ICSID Review. She is currently working on a book called Is International Law ‘International’? (OUP) and an edited collection called Comparative International Law(OUP).

For more detail, visit her RegNet profile.

Updated:  10 August 2017/Responsible Officer:  Director, RegNet/Page Contact:  Director, RegNet