In this ACIL Luncheon, Letizia Lo Giacco will present her paper on the practice by both national and international courts of citing previous judicial decisions rather than primary sources in their decisions.
Letizia Lo Giacco: Interpretations by Renvoi: The Rise of Judicial Decisions over Sources of International Law
Judicial decisions are cited by scholars in legal writings, by international organizations in legal reports, and by judges in their judicial decisions. Letizia’s paper explores the practice of courts (both national and international) of citing judicial decisions in their pronouncements. In particular, the paper considers instances of judicial decisions in which prior interpretations of a certain legal rule has displaced the reference to the text of the rule itself, and provided the previous interpretation of the rule as a new point of reference. Such practices of judicial citation essentially show that i) courts tend to invoke prior judicial decisions in lieu of primary sources, and that ii) interpretation contained in a judicial decision shapes the content of legal rules to the extent of offering a new wording which marginalizes the text of the actual provision.
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The ACIL regularly organizes ACIL Luncheons at which ACIL researchers and visiting fellows present aspects of their work, discuss recent developments, cases, ideas, etc. ACIL Luncheons aim to advance interaction and exchange of research. They are open to all; registration is not required.