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In discussing gender issues frequent references are made to the Law of the Sea and more specifically to the UN Fish Stocks agreement (UNFSA). This instrument is somewhat of a metaphor in discussions about gender and international law, and therefore it is an appropriate starting point for a contribution on what the scope of feminist research in the Law of the Sea could be. On this basis, the chapter engages with some of the main contentions concerning the (non) gendered nature of the law of the sea, including its often-claimed technicality, its apparent objectivity and the influence that consideration of humans has had on the focus of law of the sea rules, including those relevant from a gender perspective. Drawing on her personal experience, the author identifies factors that hinder the participation of women on an equal footing in the framing of the current law of the sea and advances suggestions for future research in this area.

In: Gender and the Law of the Sea
In: Peaceful Order in the World's Oceans
In: The Netherlands in Court
In: Protecting Cultural Property in Armed Conflict


This contribution focusses on the meaning of the formula “conservation and sustainable use” as it appears in the debate about the conservation of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction (BBNJ). As the UN General Assembly has decided to start a negotiation process for the establishment of an implementing agreement to the UN Law of the Sea convention on marine biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction, clarity about the relationship between conservation and sustainable use is important.

The paper reflects on a discussion that has so far not taken place. What do these requirements entail? This reflection is necessary given the likelihood that “conservation and sustainable use” will be understood as part of the implementing agreement’s object and purpose (art. 31 VCLT).

In: The Marine Environment and United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 14
In: Peaceful Order in the World's Oceans


This contribution reflects on dispute settlement in a future International Legally Binding Instrument on marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction. This issue has so far not attracted much attention and the importance of an early reflection about how to solve disputes concerning marine biodiversity is highlighted. Starting out with some design questions concerning dispute settlement, it becomes clear that a number of fundamental issues have yet to be addressed by the intergovernmental conference on marine biodiversity. The wisdom of a mutatis mutandis reference to existing dispute settlement mechanisms in unclos in the new instrument is questioned. Also, the relationship between a compliance mechanism and dispute settlement is at this time underexplored. How dispute settlement for marine biodiversity would fit into the existing system of dispute settlement created by the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea is addressed. In particular, the potential of establishing a permanent and specialized Chamber for Marine Biological Diversity Disputes is explored, and the desirability of access to Advisory Opinions is underlined.

In: A Bridge over Troubled Waters
In: Making the Voice of Humanity Heard
In: The European Union's Contribution to International Peace and Security