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Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment Staff Publications

2019

Social and Behavioral Sciences

Treaties

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Investment Treaties, Investor-State Dispute Settlement, And Inequality: How International Investment Treaties Exacerbate Domestic Disparities, Lise Johnson, Lisa E. Sachs Jan 2019

Investment Treaties, Investor-State Dispute Settlement, And Inequality: How International Investment Treaties Exacerbate Domestic Disparities, Lise Johnson, Lisa E. Sachs

Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment Staff Publications

Over roughly the past four decades, government officials from around the world have been erecting a framework of economic governance with major – but under-appreciated – implications for intra-national inequality. The components of this framework are thousands of bilateral and multilateral treaties designed to protect international investment. In many jurisdictions, the treaties have been concluded without public awareness or scrutiny or even much discussion or analysis by government officials – including those officials responsible for negotiating the agreements(Poulsen 2015) – and without an adequate understanding of how these agreements could affect intra-national inequality. Long imperceptible, the size and power of …