This course serves as a general introduction to public international law as a field of study and professional discipline. Designed to provide students with a foundational knowledge of the creation and the historical evolution of the subject, it is broadly divided into three parts. The first part deals with general principles of international law such as its sources, subjects, and organization. In the second part, the focus shifts to specific domains including the regulation of the use of force, humanitarian law, international criminal law and environmental law. The final part broaches certain questions regarding the politics of international law such as the rise of soft law, compliance, enforcement, monitoring, and Third World Approaches to International Law (TWAIL).

The general purpose of the course is shed light on some of the most important questions of international law both from a formal legal and a social science perspective. The assignments include several short essays, an exam, and a final research paper. The course covers at the least the same material as ‘Introduction to Public International Law’ at Utrecht University.