Friday, 24 June 2016

Second Annual International And Comparative Disaster Law Essay Contest.

DESCRIPTION: This essay contest aims to stimulate creative thinking and analysis about disaster law in a comparative and/or international perspective.


Topic: Participants are free to choose any topic they like related to law and disasters linked to natural hazards.

The following are a few potential themes provided only by way of illustration:
What impact do existing disaster law treaties have on domestic disaster management?
Can mandatory insurance rules reduce disaster risks in developing countries?
Is there a customary duty to seek international assistance when local resources are overcome by a disaster?
How can legislation improve post-disaster economic recovery?
Should the rules for humanitarian assistance be different in conflicts and disasters?
What is the role of domestic courts in improving the safety and resilience of communities?
What are the pros and cons of a rights-based approach to disaster response?
What are the prospects for a comprehensive global treaty on international disaster assistance?
Should there be a global system of certifying humanitarian NGOs?
Why aren’t land use rules and building codes preventing more deaths and losses?
What special protections do indigenous peoples require with respect to disasters?
How do derogations and limitations to human rights in disasters affect outcomes for affected persons?
What is the right balance between sovereignty and protection when it comes to international disaster response?
What are the most reasonable and successful governmental approaches to post-disaster compensation to affected persons?
How can we reduce legal barriers to speedy and equitable housing solutions after disasters?

Prizes: The winner of the contest will receive:
A monetary prize in the amount of CHF 500.
A free annual membership in the American Society of International Law and waiver of fees for attendance of the ASIL annual meeting in April 2017.
The winner will also have his or her paper published as a “Working Paper” of the IFRC’s Disaster Law Programme.

Deadline: 31 August 2016 (11:59 p.m. Central European Time)

ELIGIBILITY: The contest is open only to students enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate degree program at any university (anywhere in the world) at the time of submission.

GUIDELINES: Essays may examine any issue related to law and disasters due to natural hazards, but must do so either from a comparative or an international law perspective, or both. Comparative essays should examine laws or legal issues from no less than three countries. A sample list of potential topics is included below (merely for purposes of illustration).
Papers must be written solely by the candidate(s), in English, and may not have been submitted for publication elsewhere. (This restriction will be lifted after the contest is completed, and, for the winners and “honourable mention” papers, after publication as IFRC Working Papers). Papers may have more than one author, so long as all authors meet all the other criteria listed here.
Citation style should conform to the “Oxford University Standard of Citation for Legal Authorities” (4th ed. 2012), available without cost online at:
Submissions may range from 5,000 to 10,000 words, including footnotes.
On a separate first page only, each entry should include: the title, author’s name, author’s mailing address, email address, and phone number, university name and address, year in school, and expected graduation date. In addition, contestants should include the following sentence, along with a submission date and signature of the author(s): “[Name of author] is the sole author of this paper and complies with all requirements of this contest.

SUBMISSION: Essays should be submitted to as Microsoft Word attachments.

Inquiries Questions may be directed

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