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6 - Standard-Setting in UN System Organizations

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  31 March 2022

Jan Klabbers
Affiliation:
University of Helsinki
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Summary

The absence of explicit lawmaking authority has not prevented international organizations from producing ‘standards’ that deviate from the ways the traditional sources of international law – treaties, custom, general principles – are usually understood. Despite the fact the UN was not given plenary authority to conclude treaties,1 a functionalist ‘principle of speciality’ imposes subject matter limits on UN system organizations,2 and entities charged with progressively developing or codifying the law (such as the International Law Commission (ILC)) can only make recommendations, the extent of standard-setting by international organizations vastly exceeds what might be expected from such limitations.3

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2022

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