Module Provider: School of Law
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2018/9

Module Convenor: Mr Matt Windsor

Email: m.r.windsor@reading.ac.uk

Type of module:

Summary module description:
This module examines the structure, procedure and role played by the WTO dispute settlement mechanism. It will review the evolution of this mechanism, and its overall intellectual and theoretical bases. The module will also review: (i) the current dispute settlement procedure; (ii) the main topics subject to dispute between Member States; (iii) specific examples of dispute settlement practice; (iv) how dispute resolution decisions by panels and the Appellate Body are implemented, and how effective they are in practice.

The module is designed:
- to promote an understanding of the operations of international economic law, and the WTO in particular;
- to promote an awareness of the dispute resolution mechanisms of the WTO, and of the main legal and policy issues addressed by these mechanisms.
- to offer an understanding of the relevance of dispute settlement for determining policy by key international and domestic institutions.

Assessable learning outcomes:
On completion of the module, students will be expected to be able to:
-demonstrate knowledge of the key institutions/ structures, principles and concepts of WTO’s dispute settlement mechanisms, and their relevance to international economic relations;
-identify the relevant dispute settlement rules, and their relationship to WTO substantive law and domestic legal systems;
-demonstrate a clear understanding and critical appreciation of the legal, economic and political issues involved in dispute resolution mechanisms regarding international economic law;
-carry out competent and independent research into some aspects of the law relating to WTO dispute resolution;
-present and communicate their research findings effectively;
-consider and critically assess the different approaches to the problems and issues raised.

Additional outcomes:
In addition to those listed in the School’s ‘core skills statement’, the module will encourage the development of:

- High-level oral communication skills through reflective, analytical class discussion;
- Advanced critical reading skills in relation to primary and/or secondary sources;
- High-level writing skills through close and critical analysis of both primary and secondary source material;
- An ability to apply theoretical and contextual knowledge to practical problems that face people working in the field.

Outline content:
This module will cover issues, typically in sets of two per topic, such as:

1. Introduction to WTO law and its evolution;

2. Dispute settlement procedures;

3. Case studies on the main topics of dispute;

4. Dispute settlement practice and the development of WTO law;

5. Implementation of decisions adopted through WTO dispute resolution mechanisms.

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:
Teaching in this module is designed to provide students with a range of resources on which they can draw in their learning. The main elements are:
•A list of required and recommended readings, with notes and questions that will be used to guide class discussion and reflection.
•20 seminars / 10 two-hour seminars in the Spring term. Seminars are discussion based classes.
•Assessed work that will be used to develop students' skills and knowledge.
•Optional non-assessed work that will be used to develop students’ skills and knowledge.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Seminars 20
Guided independent study 180
Total hours by term 200.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written assignment including essay 100

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:
A 15 page essay (formatted in accordance with the School of Law’s Assessed Work Rules)

Formative assessment methods:

Penalties for late submission:

Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the standard University policy.

Assessment requirements for a pass:
50% overall

Reassessment arrangements:
See School of Law PGT Programme Handbook

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):
1) Required text books:
2) Specialist equipment or materials:
3) Specialist clothing, footwear or headgear:
4) Printing and binding:
5) Computers and devices with a particular specification:
6) Travel, accommodation and subsistence:

Last updated: 19 September 2018


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