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Vanderbilt University Law School

Compliance

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Full-Text Articles in Law

Power, Exit Costs, And Renegotiation In International Law, Timothy Meyer Jan 2010

Power, Exit Costs, And Renegotiation In International Law, Timothy Meyer

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

Scholars have long understood that the instability of power has ramifications for compliance with international law. Scholars have not, however, focused on how states’ expectations about shifting power affect the initial design of international agreements. In this paper, I integrate shifting power into an analysis of the initial design of both the formal and substantive aspects of agreements. I argue that a state expecting to become more powerful over time incurs an opportunity cost by agreeing to formal provisions that raise the cost of exiting an agreement. Exit costs - which promote the stability of legal rules - have distributional implications. Before ...


Soft Law As Delegation, Timothy Meyer Jan 2009

Soft Law As Delegation, Timothy Meyer

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

This article examines one of the most important trends in international legal governance since the end of the Second World War: the rise of "soft law," or legally non-binding instruments. Scholars studying the design of international agreements have long puzzled over why states use soft law. The decision to make an agreement or obligation legally binding is within the control of the states negotiating the content of the legal obligations. Basic contract theory predicts that parties to a contract would want their agreement to be as credible as possible, to ensure optimal incentives to perform. It is therefore odd that ...