Amsterdam Center for International Law


Research within the ACIL in particular focuses on international constitutional law (including human rights law), international responsibility, international criminal justice, and the reception of international law in the domestic legal order. These themes are embedded in two Research Programmes.

The International Rule of Law

The ACIL’s main Research Programme ‘The International Rule of Law’ has been recognized by the University and the Faculty as thematic research focal point. The substantive aim of the programme is to contribute to academic and policy debates on the development and implementation of a rule of law at the international level.

The programme engages in a critical assessment of conceptions of the international rule of law, and explores developments in selected contexts, in particular postnational rulemaking, shared responsibility, interfaces between international and national legal orders, international investment law, international criminal justice and hierarchy in international law.

In addition to these topics, which are pursued by researchers engaging in joint projects, individual members of the research group have explored a variety of other questions intimately related to the international rule of law. Some of these are of a more conceptual and theoretical nature (eg legal argumentation, interpretation, and formalism), whereas others deal with specific issue-areas (eg human rights, refugees, armed conflict, and protection of the environment).

The programme thus pursues a coherent but flexible research agenda that allows its researchers to explore a diversity of innovative areas that are relevant for our understanding of the international rule of law.

The Role of Law in Armed Conflict and Peace Operations

The ACIL also hosts the Research Programme ‘The Role of Law in Armed Conflict and Peace Operations’, which investigates the increasing and changing nature of the role of law in situations of armed  conflict and military operations below the threshold of armed conflict, in particular peace operations.

The programme also devotes attention to the application of international law to new and emerging technologies and their impact upon warfare such as cyber warfare, autonomous and unmanned weapons systems and arms control law, including  nuclear proliferation and nuclear security.

Published by  ACIL

18 May 2016