Due Diligence in International Law


Due Diligence in International Law identifies due diligence as the missing link between state responsibility and international liability. Acknowledged in all legal fields, it ensures international peaceful cooperation and prevents significant transboundary harm, yet it has thus far not been comprehensively discussed in literature. The present volume fills this void.
Kulesza identifies due diligence as a principle of international law and traces its evolution throughout centuries. The no-harm principle, key to identifying responsibility for transboundary harm, focal to international environmental law and applicable to e.g. combating terrorism, follows states’ obligation of due diligence in preventing foreign harm. This obligation, present in various treaty-based and customary regimes is argued to be a principle of international public law applicable to all obligations of conduct.

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Joanna Kulesza, Ph.D., University of Lodz, Poland, is Assistant Professor of International Law and Internet Governance. She has authored five monographs and numerous other peer-reviewed publications on international law and new technologies, including “International Internet Law” (Routledge 2011).
Acknowledgement; Abbreviations;
Table of Treaties and Other Instruments
ILC Reports and Drafts
Terminological Issues
Fault and Responsibility in International Law

1 The Obligation of Due Diligence – Theory and Practice
General Principles of International Law
The Principle of International Responsibility
State as a Collective in Ancient Times and the Middle Ages
Individual Responsibility of Monarchs in the Age of Absolutism
Enlightenment Concepts of State Responsibility
Indirect and Objective Responsibility in International Law
Due Diligence and the Question of State Sovereignty
Due Diligence and Denial of Justice to Foreigners
Due Diligence and Diplomatic Protection
Due Diligence in Preventing Transboundary Environmental Harm
Due Diligence, Crime Prevention and International Terrorism
The Role of Due Diligence in Contemporary International Jurisprudence

2 State Responsibility, International Liability and Due Diligence – A Critical Analysis
Introductory Remarks
League of Nations and State Responsibility
The International Law Commission on State Responsibility Principles
Due Diligence and State Responsibility
Principles of State Responsibility
Attribution of an Internationally Wrongful Act
Responsibility for State Bodies
Responsibility for State Actors
Responsibility for Private Individuals
The Question of Indirect (Vicarious) Responsibility of States
Circumstances Precluding Lawfulness
State Responsibility vs International Liability
Due Diligence and the Principle of Good-Neighborliness
Principles of International Liability for Harmful Consequences of Acts Not Prohibited by International Law
Applying International Liability Norms
Due Diligence, Risk and Harm in the Regime of International Liability
The Concept of Significant Transboundary Harm
On Liability and Responsibility – Assessing ILC

3 Due Diligence in Treaty Regimes
Introductory Remarks
Due Diligence in International Environmental Law
State Responsibility in International Environmental Law
Law of the Sea
Law of International Watercourses
Protection of Foreigners
Law of Diplomatic Relations
Protection of Aliens and the Obligations of the Sending State
Due Diligence Principle as the Shared Element of Treaty-based Regimes
Internationally Recognized Preventive Measures

4 The Principle of Due Diligence in International Law
The Principle of Due Diligence
Consequences of Violating the Due Diligence Principle

5 Applying the Due Diligence Principle – Cybersecurity and National Security Issues
International Security and Due Diligence
Due Diligence in Preventing Terrorist Offenses
Cyberterrorism and Cybersecurity
Towards a Due Diligence Standard for Cyberspace


International law scholars and practitioners, all interested in international law and international relations, in particular in environmental law, IT law, state responsibility, terrorism prevention.
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