Areas Investment Law and Policy
Investment Law and Policy
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Investment is a critical component of sustainable development. In particular, under the right conditions, foreign direct investment (FDI) can improve economic growth and living standards, create jobs, transfer technology and know-how and result in supply chain upgrading. However, its benefits are not automatic, and, if not carefully governed, investment can result in harm to the… read more
Securing Adequate Legal Defense in Proceedings under International Investment Agreements: A Scoping Study
CCSI prepared a Scoping Study on Securing Adequate Legal Defense in Proceedings under International Investment Agreements (Scoping Study) for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. Also available are: A summary version of the study (33 pages) A webinar (March 24, 2020), hosted by CCSI and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, discussed the… read more
Policymakers and environmental advocates have often overlooked how provisions granted by states in international investment agreements (IIAs) have been used by investors to challenge government measures taken in the public interest to protect the environment and advance environmental justice.
The program is designed for public sector officials whose responsibilities relate to investment treaty negotiation or investor-state arbitration.
In its current form, the international investment treaty regime may stymie the business and human rights agenda in various ways. This draft chapter, which will be published in the forthcoming Research Handbook on Human Rights and Business, provides an overview of the interaction between human rights law and the investment treaty regime and explores options for addressing the challenges that arise due to this interaction.
Modern forms of third party funding are no longer new to international arbitration. Recent years have seen significant increases in the number of funders, the number of funded cases, the number of law firms working with funders and the number of reported cases involving issues relating to funding. When third-party funding is used in investor-state… read more
The Think20 (T20) is an initiative that brings together research institutes and think tanks from the G20 countries to develop policy recommendations within thematic Task Forces. CCSI staff member Lise Johnson was a member of the Trade and Investment Task Force, contributing to a Policy Brief presenting recommendations for the G20’s engagement with the multilateral… read more
Investment treaties are often described as instruments aiming to (1) promote investment flows; (2) provide investors remedies for harms; (3) improve governance and the rule of law in host countries; and (4) depoliticize disputes – objectives of varying degrees of importance to multinational enterprises, home states, host states, and other stakeholders. The investor-state dispute settlement… read more
CCSI examines how investment treaties (both their substantive standards and dispute settlement mechanisms) can, do, and should impact development and implementation of environmental policy, including, but not limited to, measures related to climate change. CCSI implements this project through a range of activities. These include: reviewing all publicly available investor-state arbitration decisions to identify implications… read more
While international investment can provide transfers of capital and technology that spread the use of environmentally sound products and processes, and enable countries to “leapfrog” more polluting phases of development, it can also give rise to certain environmental risks. For one, strategies that firms use to structure their operations across borders and the doctrine of… read more
Contrary to SDG 10, which aims to combat inequality both within and among countries, levels of intra-national inequality in particular are on the rise in many countries. It is therefore timely and crucial to examine what factors are causing these gaps, and how they might be reduced. CCSI is examining the role of investment treaties… read more
CCSI submitted an application to file a written submission as an “other person” in Bear Creek Mining Corporation v. Republic of Peru. CCSI’s submission focused on a range of issues, including the implications of international human rights law for the interpretation and application of investment treaty standards.
Policy makers and other stakeholders are currently asking fundamental questions about whether and to what extent international investment agreements (IIAs) are consistent with and are helping to advance sustainable development objectives at home and abroad. A 2019 paper from CCSI examines the alignment of IIAs with the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda, arguing that while FDI will play… read more
CCSI focuses on the intersection of international investment law and international human rights law, and the impacts of their application for the most vulnerable of rights-holders. Among other things, this includes a specific focus on investment arbitrations, and their implications for the realization of human rights.
In May 2016, CCSI and the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples co-hosted a workshop on indigenous peoples and investment. The workshop brought together indigenous representatives, legal practitioners, academics, and other stakeholders to discuss how international investment and trade frameworks, and the international human rights law regime can be reformed to strengthen the rights of indigenous peoples.
International investment law, based primarily on international investment treaties, plays an important role in the governance of investment in agriculture, forestry, and fishing. CCSI partnered with IIED and IISD to produce a briefing note that explains how investment law affects these investments, and how policy-makers can navigate the challenges posed by current frameworks.
Beginning on June 15, 2015, CCSI and the Global Economic Governance Programme at Oxford University launched a series of short presentations by academics, practitioners, and civil society on key topics in international investment law. The series facilitates open access to cutting-edge research and information, and aims to help enrich discussions about the past, present, and future… read more
An ongoing stream of CCSI’s work is to follow developments with claims made and decisions issued in treaty-based investor-state arbitrations, and produce papers documenting these developments and highlighting their implications for environmental, social and economic policy.
With over 3000 international investment treaties in existence and governments continuing to negotiate and ratify additional bilateral and multilateral investment treaties, it is important to have a clear understanding of the implications of these investment treaties on investor protections and state liability, and the resulting balance of public and private interests that they strike. To… read more
CCSI is reviewing international investment agreements and the case law interpreting them, and analyzing what the treaties mean for domestic environmental policy.
Since 2006, CCSI has hosted an annual Columbia International Investment Conference. These annual conferences bring together numerous stakeholders including high-level government officials, corporate executives, investors, academics, and civil society for forward-looking policy discussions of critical issues in international investment for sustainable development. A list of the past Conferences, with links to the programs and materials,… read more
This project looks at the extent to which international investment agreements have come to incorporate clauses that provide the parties with exceptions from the application of certain disciplines.
Making Investment Treaties Work for Sustainable Development: Addressing Challenges in Existing Agreements and Designing New Frameworks
CCSI is providing policy and advisory to governments on using investment treaties to support advancement of policy goals, and also supporting other inter- and non-governmental organizations in these areas.
CCSI is following the negotiation and conclusion of investment treaties, and publishing research on trends and developments. Analysis of recent trends is compiled in the Yearbook on Investment Law and Policy.
China’s emergence as an important outward investor and implications for international investment law
China has become one of the three most important outward foreign direct investors, complementing its role as one of the most important host countries world wide and the most important one among developing countries. Moreover, the country has concluded the second highest number of of bilateral investment treaties, in addition to free trade agreements with… read more
Recognizing the need to learn from accumulated experience with public-private partnerships, CCSI is developing a database to enable governments and researchers to identify the legal formulas that can and have been used to produce successful PPPs.
CCSI hosts an annual Spring or Fall Speaker Series on International Investment Law and Policy that brings practitioners and experts in the field of international investment law to highlight and explore timely and topical issues or developments in the field. This Series, which is open to and attracts a diverse audience including students, academics, and practitioners,… read more
This project, commissioned by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland, seeks to ascertain the strengths and weaknesses of the current international investment law and policy regime and outline options for improvement.
This project looks at the obstacles to an agreement between China and the US, and the compromises that could possibly be envisioned.
The ultimate objective of the project is to construct model syllabi for international investment law and make them available to institutions of higher learning throughout the world, especially in emerging markets.
CCSI regularly hosts speakers, roundtables, workshops, and events on a variety of related topics.
CCSI produces a number of policy briefs, guides and other publications that are useful resources on topics of extractive industries, land and agriculture, and investment law and policy.
CCSI staff work with Law School administrators to build curricula around foreign direct investment issues.
The study of outward FDI and competitive neutrality seeks to analyze what measures home countries have undertaken to support their outward investing enterprises and what the salient features are of these measures.
CCSI is working to deepen and broaden understanding regarding the appropriate legal frameworks that can better ensure that public-private partnerships result in high quality, accountable, and sustainable infrastructure and related services.
Committed to the belief that transparency in investor-state arbitration is fundamental for accountability, good governance, and the rule of law, elements which are, in turn, crucial for sustainable development, CCSI has been involved in the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) proceedings to increase public access to information regarding disputes.
Leveraging Investment for Sustainable Development: the Role of Performance Requirements for Technology Transfer
This project furthers research (1) on the types of performance requirements countries may want to use (or avoid using) in order to fully reap the benefits from investments by MNEs; and (2) the role of international investment agreements in promoting or restricting use of such performance requirements.
This research project focuses on identifying concrete actions home states can take to help catalyze and channel FDI to enhance technology transfer for climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies.
The Emerging Market Global Players Project leads and coordinates research among a worldwide network of academics and institutions that produce new studies on the salient features of MNEs from emerging markets and their impact on sustainable development.
The first effort to arrive at comprehensive and balanced rules governing the relations of governments and multinational enterprises were undertaken in the United Nations a few decades ago. The negotiations of a United Nations Code of Conduct on Transnational Corporations began in the late 1970s against the background of the quest for a New International Economic Order,… read more
In partnership with Africa Investor, CCSI evaluated trends in intra-African investment flows over the last 10 years. A high-level summary of the research was published in the November 2012 edition of Africa Investor magazine.