memory's sacred domain

moments mundane and magical

Archive for December 21st, 2018

Extended Call for Papers: AsianSIL 7th Biennial Conference 2019, Quezon City Philippines

leave a comment »


7th AsianSIL Biennial Conference
22 to 23 August 2019 (Quezon City, Philippines)


Theme of the Conference: Rethinking International Law: Finding Common Solutions to Contemporary Civilizational Issues from an Asian Perspective

Undeniably, the Asian region now plays a bigger role in the shaping of international law, as it continues to grow in economic, cultural and political importance. With more than half of the world’s population living in the region – not to mention that it plays host to ten of the largest nations on earth – Asian economies push the demands of development into unchartered territory in the so-called Asian century with a dynamism all their own.

And yet the past is always relevant to our common future/s. While international law may have had a murky beginning in Asia – closely intertwined as it has been with the colonial project – there is no question that Asian societies have embraced it, even for purposes distinct and separate from its original impulses. As a platform for cooperation in many areas, it has proven its usefulness, the contentious aspects notwithstanding.

Contemporary developments in international relations, shifts in global, regional and national politics, as well as large-scale environmental and economic issues, now compel a reexamination of the foundational roots of international law, especially as these raise civilizational issues.

For example, the horrific spectre raised by a new breed of radical terrorists has raised a common issue to humanity and challenges exceptionalist notions of culture-based norms and rights on what it means to be human and to be a rights-bearer.

East and West, North and South, the question of human dignity has become front and center in the raging debate on the meaning and continuing relevance of human rights; this in fact, should take us back to the discussions on the ontological or civilizational sources from which the drafters of the UN Charter drew in their difficult and gargantuan work. To be sure, Asia has its own smoldering human rights and humanitarian hotspots, which further complicate the direction of development its varied societies want to harness for their future.

And what of the UN in relation to Asia, the most diverse of regions in the world? As a leading, if dominant feature of the international legal order, the UN and the different corollary international legal institutions it has spawned have demonstrated both vertical and horizontal features that have a bearing on an Asian embrace of international law.

In the global issue of environmental degradation – on many levels a real civilizational threat – Asia has moved forward, with China choosing to work with the European Union in implementing the Paris Protocol in the face of American retreat. And environmental problems are no abstract problem in many Asian societies.

The hegemony of Western-style business and investments also now finds stiff competition in Chinese-led international banking and investments, and the new Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) proposed by China continues to make inroads in areas traditionally occupied by state sovereignty and extant regional economic arrangements.

Uncertainties in the contemporary times may mean disabling perplexities. But it may also be embraced as a necessary search for common solutions to the common problems faced by diverse cultures and societies, by way of rethinking what international law had stood for from the beginning and how it may be made relevant to contemporary challenges.

Click here for further details

The 7th Biennial Conference and its Junior Scholars Conference is co-hosted by the Philippine Society of International, the Department of Foreign Affairs and the University of the Philippines College of Law/UP Law Center.

Written by Romel

December 21, 2018 at 1:50 am

Posted in Uncategorized

%d bloggers like this: