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Michael Scharf on the Accelerated Formation of Customary International Law
31 Dec 1969 -  Mr. Michael Scharf Dean and Professor of Law Director of the Frederick K. Cox International Law Center Case Western Reserve University School of Law

"Accelerated Formation of Customary International Law"
This lecture explores the concept of "Grotian Moments": transformative developments that generate the unique conditions for accelerated formation of customary international law. Scharf contends that in periods of fundamental change, whether by technological advances, the commission of new forms of crimes against humanity, or the development of new means of warfare or terrorism, customary international law may form much more rapidly and with less state practice than is normally the case to keep up with the pace of developments. This lecture examines six case studies of potential Grotian Moments: the Nuremberg trial, jurisdiction over the Continental Shelf, the advent of space law, the Yugoslavia Tribunal's Tadic decision, and the evolving law of use of force in self-defense against non-state actors and humanitarian intervention.