Published online by Cambridge University Press: 05 June 2020
In Chapter 7, we focus on the domain of foreign direct investment (FDI). We claim that states often refrain from sharing sensitive economic information, even though it can be important to adjudicating investment disputes. We demonstrate that properly designed IOs, such as the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID), can ameliorate this problem by receiving and protecting sensitive information. We assess our hypotheses using new data on specific pieces of information shared – along with information withheld – from this institution. Specifically, we pair a measure of redactions in publicly released panel reports with qualitative case evidence. We show that key reforms designed to safeguard sensitive information increased the provision of this information and boosted FDI, especially in areas where sensitive information is particularly common. We conclude the chapter by discussing how solving this pervasive issue puts international investment institutions in tension with the normative goals of transparency and accountability.