The Lawfare Podcast: The World Crisis and International Law

By Jen Patja Howell
Friday, February 10, 2023, 5:01 AM

International law has been under significant stress in the last decade as a result of global populism, the rise of China, the war in Ukraine, and the challenges of the pandemic, climate change, and cybersecurity threats, among many others. To discuss why international law seems to be failing in important respects and what to do about it, Jack Goldsmith sat down with Paul Stephan, the John C. Jeffries, Jr., Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of Virginia, and author of the new book, “The World Crisis and International Law: The Knowledge Economy and the Battle for the Future.” They discussed whether international law is truly failing, and if so, how; Stephan's claim that the accelerating pace of technological change induced by the knowledge economy best explains international law’s unraveling; why the highest courts of important states are increasingly rejecting international law and the orders of international courts and tribunals; and Stephan's bottom-up prescriptions for these problems.