Past Events

February 21, 2019

“Current Issues in International Business, Human Rights and Sustainability”

On February 21, 2019, the Center sponsored a presentation on “Current Issues in International Business, Human Rights and Sustainability” by Adjunct Professor Lelia Mooney. Prof. Mooney is a widely-respected expert with more than twenty years’ practical experience working on initiatives in rule of law, governance, business, human rights and sustainability, gender and social inclusion, conflict management and transformation and multi-stakeholder engagement. She has authored several relevant publications including “Promoting the Rule of Law: A Practitioner’s Guide to Key Issues and Developments,” and “The Business, Human Rights and Sustainability Sourcebook,” both published by the American Bar Association.

Her discussion highlighted current challenges and practical opportunities in this evolving field of practice. Efforts to strengthen the relationship between business, human rights and sustainability have gained significant momentum in recent years, owing largely to the passage of the U.N. Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGP) in 2011, the 2012 U.N. Rio+20 Sustainable Development Conference, and the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Because of these developments and the ensuing emergence of multi-stakeholder initiations involving governments, the private sector, investors and civil society networks, one can speak today of an emergent international “soft law” system firmly rooted in internationally-acknowledged hard law principles. This emergent system challenges lawyers to think creatively and “outside the box” in solving the underlying problems. Whatever their specialties, practitioners today need a broader set of skills and strategies, and a more comprehensive knowledge and appreciation of human rights, environmental and natural resources management, in order to develop effective cross-sector collaborations.

The event was sponsored by the Center on Transnational Business and the Law, a part of the Georgetown Institute on International Economic Law (IIEL). It was cosponsored by the D.C. Chapter of the Inter-American Bar Association (IABA D.C.), in coordination with Foreign Lawyers at Georgetown (FLAG), the Latin American Law Students Association (LALSA) and the Georgetown International Law Society (GILS).

April 27-28, 2018

“A Conference on Challenges Facing International  Business, Trade and Investments”

The Center for Transnational Business and the Law at Georgetown University Law Center held a two day conference entitled; “A Conference on Challenges Facing International Business, Trade and Investments.” The two-day conference had as its keynote speaker for day one Dr. Peter Quilter, a Senior Fellow at Harvard Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation, former Assistant Secretary (Administration and Finance), Organization of American States. The conference had as its keynote speaker for day two Professor Jonathon Drimmer, Chief Compliance Officer and Deputy General Counsel, Barrick Gold, Adjunct Professor, Georgetown University Law Center.

In addition, two panels were held on the second day. The first panel which included Mr. Robert Eckford, Associate Director (Trade and Investment), Tobacco-Free Kids; Alex Wilbraham, Counsel, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP; Mr. Patrick W. Pearsall, Partner, Jenner & Block LLP; Prof. Chiara Giorgetti, Director LL.M. Program, University of Richmond School of Law, would discuss “Human Rights and Public Health: A Turning Point in International Investment Agreements and Investor-State Dispute Settlement?.” The second panel which included Ms. Gina Barbieri, Principal Ombudsman, Compliance Advisory Ombudsman (CAO); Ms. Leila Mooney, Adjunct Professor, Georgetown University Law Center; Prof. Robert Stumberg, Georgetown University Law Center; Ms. Amy Lehr, Counsel, Foley Hoag LLP would discuss “Corporate Social Responsibility: Reshaping the way of Doing Business, Invest and Trade in the Global Market.”

April 14, 2018

Litigating Foreign Relations Law in a Changing Treaty Landscape

A conference on “Litigating Foreign Relations Law in a Changing Treaty Landscape,” including a keynote by Jessica Tuchman-Matthews and panel discussions on “Recent Developments in U.S. Treaty Law and Practice” and “Litigating Foreign Relations Law in the Trump Administration.”

October 31, 2017

Secretary of State’s Advisory Committee on Private International Law

The Center will host the fall 2017 meeting of the Secretary of State’s Advisory Committee on Private International Law (ACPIL) on Friday, October 31, 2017.

January 23, 2017

International Law in the Trump Era

With the International & National Security Law Practice Group and the Georgetown Student Division of the Federalist Society, as well as the American Branch of the International Law Association, the Center cosponsored a panel discussion exploring, among other topics, what trade agreements might look like in the new administration, the administration’s likely approach to international alliances, the prospects for ratification of international treaties, and the war on terror. The event also featured a panel on the future of trade law, including free trade agreements such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership and NAFTA.

November 17-18, 2016

8th Conference on Teaching Transnational Commercial Law

This annual gathering of international experts (including both practitioners and academics) provides an opportunity to bring participants up-to-date on current developments worldwide.  The 8th annual conference, a two-day event cosponsored in 2016 by the American Branch of the International Law Association and the International Law Institute, focused on International Commercial Arbitration, in particular the New York Convention, UNCITRAL’s 2010 arbitration rules, and other forms of settling international commercial disputes.

November 2, 2015

Service of Process and Taking of Evidence Abroad: The Impact of “Electronic Means” on the Operation of the Hague Conventions

This celebration of the 50th anniversary of the 1965 Hague Convention on the Service of Process Abroad and the 45th Anniversary of the Hague Convention on the Taking of Evidence explored current applications and challenges to two of the international agreements of most importance to those involved in transnational litigation of international commercial disputes.  A distinguished group of international practitioners and scholars discussed the Conventions “theory and practice,” “what’s working and what’s not,” and “what’s coming next.” The Secretary General of the Hague Conference on Private International Law gave the opening address; the Keynote Speaker was the Secretary for Justice of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the PRC.

September 25, 2015

Secretary of State’s Advisory Committee on Private International Law

Open meeting of the committee to provide an annual review of significant developments and future projects in the field, review of the current agendas on work performed at the Hague Conference, UNCITRAL, UNIDROIT, the OAS and other organizations.

January 30, 2015

Global Sales Law Conference: The CISG at 35: Challenges Today

On the occasion of the 35th anniversary of the UN Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods (the “CISG”), the Center joined with the UNCITRAL Secretariat in providing an intensive overview of the use of the CISG in North American legal practice, the future of uniform contract law, and the promotion and role of the CISG in international economic development.  The goal was to take stock of current developments, to foster greater awareness of CISG among practitioners, and to explore the CISG’s contribution to legal technical assistance.  The conference was cosponsored by the American Branch of the International Law Association, ASIL, ABA/SIL, the International Law Institute, the Institute of International Commercial Law, Pace Law and Penn State Dickinson Law.

July 10, 2013

Meeting of the ACIEP Sanctions Subcommittee

Ambassador Daniel Fried, the Department of State’s Coordinator for Sanctions Policy, and Peter Harrell, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Threat Finance and Sanctions, presented and discussed: “An Update on Recent Developments re: Iran Sanctions.”

April 3, 2013

Address by Cameron F. Kerry, General Counsel of the U.S. Department of Commerce, on The Digital Economy, Rule of Law from Beijing to Baghdad, IP and Lots Else – The Job of the General Counsel at the U.S. Department of Commerce

The general counsel for the U.S. Department of Commerce, Cameron Kerry, spoke to Georgetown Law faculty, students, alumni, and others about the digital economy, intellectual property and other topics.

“Scarcely any issue arises in the U.S. government that does not become a question for legal counsel sooner or later,” said Kerry, who focuses on the legal and policy issues of everything from placing weather satellites in space to regulating trade with countries here on earth.

“The challenge that the United States faces … is fostering a 21st-century economy that grows consistently enough and fast enough to sustain a promising future…,” he said. “We need to do more to lay a foundation for sustained growth.”

The department is working to adapt to virtual space the rules that apply in physical space, including commercial data privacy, cyber security, the free flow of information across borders and the protection of intellectual property.

On the foreign front, lawyers at Commerce have an ongoing dialogue with China on rule-of-law issues. “The course of world history … will be shaped, for good or for ill, by the course of that relationship,” Kerry said.

As for his own career, Kerry — the brother of the U.S. Secretary of State — said he feels extraordinarily fortunate. “I hope some of you will have the opportunity to serve in government,” he said. “In the 21st century, we need the best lawyers to serve our country.”

February 13, 2013

Symposium on “The Evolution of Economic Sanctions: Increasingly Financial, Multilateral, and Robust,” co-sponored with the Georgetown Journal of International Law, the Georgetown Center for National Security and the Law, and the American Society of International Law. The Center co-organized the event with the Journal

This one-day Symposium had as its keynote speaker the Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorist Financing, Daniel L. Glaser. In addition four panels of present and past government officials, academics, and practitioners addressed various aspects of economic sanctions, including: the legal basis and operation of financial sanctions; the impacts of financial sanctions; coordination and incongruity among U.S., EU, and UN sanctions; and other legal, political, and humanitarian issues raised by sanctions. Several papers from the Symposium will be published in the Spring 2013 issue of the Journal.

November 19, 2012

Meeting of the ACIEP Sanctions Subcommittee

Presentation by Assistant Secretary of State Jose W. Fernandez, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Peter Harrell, and the Department of Treasury’s Director of the Office of Foreign Assets Control, Adam J. Szubin: “A Report from State and Treasury on Developments on U.S. Sanctions re: Iran and Burma.”

January 19, 2012

Meeting of the ACIEP Sanctions Subcommittee

Presentation by Linda Specht, Director of the Department of State’s Office of Terrorism Finance and Economic Sanctions Policy, and David Mortlock, Attorney-Adviser in the Department’s Office of the Legal Adviser.

October 28, 2011

Symposium on “The 2010 UNIDROIT Principles on International Commercial Contracts”

Several distinguished speakers provided an overview of the Principles from a trans-Atlantic perspective, focusing on the most recent revisions and their potential impact on international commercial transactions and dispute resolution. The keynote was presented by UNIDROIT’s Secretary-General, José Angelo Estrella Faria.

September 22-23, 2011

Meeting of the ACPIL

Open meeting of this federal advisory committee’s annual review of developments in the field of private international law, covering recent activities in UNICTRAL, UNIDROIT, The Hague Conference, the European Union and the OAS on topics such as international investment securities, online dispute resolution, e-commerce, secured finance and consumer protection.

July 26, 2011

Meeting of the ACIEP Sanctions Subcommittee 

On the issue of conflict minerals, the speakers were Brad Brooks-Rubin, a special advisory in the Department of State’s Bureau of Energy, Economic, and Business Affairs; Dr. Catherine Pickard in the Department’s Africa Bureau, and Keith Adam from the Department’s Office of Central African Affairs.

May 4, 2011

Meeting of the ACIEP Sanctions Subcommittee

Thomas L. Delare, the Director of the State Department’s Office of Terrorism Finance and Economic Sanctions Policy, and David Mortlock, an Attorney-Adviser in the Legal Adviser’s Office, addressed the steps the Department and other Departments were taking to enforce the U.S. sanctions against Iran.

March 8, 2011

Meeting of the ACIEP Sanctions Subcommittee

Ambassador William B. Wood, the U.S. Envoy for International Sanctions Implementation, addressed U.S. diplomatic efforts to encourage full implementation of the international sanctions against Iran.

October 28-29, 2010

Meeting of the ACPIL

Annual meeting of the Advisory Committee, discussing developments in the areas of international commercial and investment arbitration, the Hague Choice of Court Agreements Convention, international family law (abduction, adoption, enforcement of maintenance agreements), protocols to the Capetown Convention on railroad rolling stock, mobile construction equipment and space assets and issues of federalism in the implementation of private international law treaties in the United States.

July 28, 2010

Meeting of the ACIEP Sanctions Subcommittee

Thomas L. Delare, accompanied by David Mortlock from the Department of State, discussed the ongoing implementation process for the new U.S. sanctions. They were joined by Dr. László Deák, Political Counselor at the Delegation of the European Union, who provided an overview of the EU’s use of economic sanctions and the new sanctions against Iran.

June 16, 2010

Meeting of the ACIEP Sanctions Subcommittee

Thomas L. Delare discussed his Office’s activities and the possible roles of the Subcommittee.

April 26, 2010

Symposium on “Transparency in International Arbitration: A Focus on Best Practices”

This symposium was undertaken in support of a joint project of the American Branch of the International Law Association and the American Society of International Law, with the support of the D.C. Bar International Law Section’s International Dispute Resolution Committee and Georgetown’s International Arbitration Society, and in light of the then-pending amendments to the UNCITRAL Arbitration Rules. Several panels of distinguished practitioners, academics and government officials discussed both benefits and pitfalls of transparency vs. confidentiality in commercial as well as investment arbitration. James Castello, Esq., of King & Spalding, LLP, gave the keynote.

April 15, 2009

“Designing Trade Policy: Lessons from the Global Communications and Information Markets”

Speech by Dr. Peter F. Cowhey, Senior Counselor to the U.S. Trade Representative, with dinner following.