International Investment Law and Comparative Public Law—an Introduction
This chapter provides an introduction to the conceptual foundations of the book. It points to the need to develop new conceptual approaches to remedy discontents that have emerged in relation to international investment law. It suggests that, institutional reform not being likely, the most promising avenue to increase accountability and legitimacy in this field is to conceptualize international investment law as a public law discipline that differs from both public international law and commercial arbitration. The public law dimensions, in fact, extend beyond the single host State and concern foreign investors and States more generally, as investment treaty arbitration increasingly develops into a mechanism of global governance with arbitral tribunals crafting and concretizing treaty-overarching standards of investment protection with prospective effects on host States and investors. Finally, comparative public law is introduced as a method for concretizing and legitimating standards of international investment law and arbitration.
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