This course is designed for law graduates who wish to develop a specialist knowledge of aspects of the increasingly important field of European and international commercial law. Such specialist knowledge is increasingly sought by law firms, businesses and governmental bodies all over the world, in response to the expansion of international trade and commerce and international regulation, resulting from economic, political and technological change.
You will take four taught modules, which run concurrently through the teaching year. You will have a choice from a range of modules covering various aspects of European and international commercial law.
During the summer, after the taught modules have been completed, you will work on a dissertation on an topic to be agreed between you and the Course Director, related to some aspect of European or international commercial law. The dissertation is due at the end of the summer. This will provide you with an opportunity to deepen your understanding of a particular area of interest.
Recent examples of dissertations by students taking this course include:
* Between the GATT and WTO; compliance, enforcement and the surveillance of dispute resolution recommendations - the issue of completeness;
* An examination of the possibility and desirability of the elimination of child labour; the balance between children's rights, economic interests and international standards;
* The EC single market in financial services.
Four from a selection that currently includes:
International Trade Law
The law governing international contracts for the supply of goods, including the issues of transport, insurance, finance, arbitration, conflicts of laws, and international harmonisation of laws.
International Economic Law
The law governing economic relations between states, and in particualr the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and its rules on the supply of goods and services, tariffs, subsidies and dumping.
International Intellectual Property Law
The basic principles of the law of intellectual property; European and international conventions on harmonisation and mutual recognition of intellectual property rights; and the WTO "TRIPs" rules concerning intellectual property.
International Financial Law
The nature and function of banking, securities, and financial markets; European and international legal regulation of financial markets; the role of international financial organisations.
Public International Law
The law governing relations between States, including international personality, statehood and recognition, territorial sovereignity, immunity, the law of the sea, state responsibility, dispute resolution and the use of force and international human rights.
International Labour Law
The international structures, standards and processes developed by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) concerning equality, health and safety, child labour, freedom of association, and other aspects of social justice in the workplace.
European and International Environmental Law
The framework of environmental protection in the European Union and the relationship with market integration; the enforcement of EU environmental law; WTO law on environmental protection and the relationship with EU law.
International Commercial Arbitration
The meaning of arbitration; alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR); the juridical nature of arbitration; the arbitration agreement and party autonomy; the selection and removal of arbitrators, their independence, neutral, authority, power and responsibility; separability and Kompetenz-Kompetenz; ad hoc and institutional arbitration; review of major international instruments; interim relief and conservatory measures; joinder, consolidation and multi-parties; determining the place of arbitration, its importance and effect; the lex arbitri, the arbitration procedure and the conduct of arbitration; transnational arbitration and the absence of a law to govern the arbitration process; determination of the applicable law, the conflict of laws, the lex mercatoria, general principles of law, trade usage's and amiable composition; the award, its content, finality and convention, and the place of majority awards; enforcement of awards, nationally and internationally, and the effect of the New York Convention; the challenge to and approach from arbitral awards; the role of the courts in supporting and supervising the arbitral process; state participation in international arbitration and sovereign/state immunity; the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID).
Note: modules are subject to withdrawal at the School's discretion.
The School has an excellent record in Research and in the 2001 Research Assessment Exercise Law was awarded the highest possible grade of 5A.
Law at Brunel University is a well established law school, highly rated for its published scholarship, and well known amongst law firms for its distinctice undergraduate sandwich courses. It has recently been through the University's periodic review, which is designed to ensure that high standards of teaching are maintained. The school has considerable expertise in various aspects of international trade law and european and international trade law.
The teaching will usually take the form of seminar classes, involving discussion of prepared reading, supplemented by lecturing from the module teacher to introduce and consolidate the discussion. For each module you will be assessed twice, first by way of a written essay and then by way of a "seen" or "pre-release" examination, when the question paper is released a short time before the day of the exam. Each assessment is worth 50% of the overall mark.