Vanderbilt Law School Background Image

Vanderbilt in Venice Summer 2020 Courses

Course I

Comparative Perspectives on Counterterrorism (2 credit hours) 

This course offers a comparative analysis of the national approaches of, inter alia, the United States, Israel, the European Union, and other states. This multidisciplinary course focuses on the dual interlocking axes of legal norms [flowing from international as well as national perspective] and the accompanying political and operational imperatives. Counterterrorism is a global cooperative phenomenon, and the study of its practice entails the use of case-law, legislation, international law, and national policy directives and operational decisions. Students will be exposed to case-law from a number of jurisdictions, to include international courts and commissions, reaching occasionally contradictory results. Counterterrorism also entails discussion of human rights law, humanitarian law, and comparative statutory study. The course will also entail extended use of scenario driven exercises.

[Course runs first two weeks of program]

Taught by Michael Newton, Professor of the Practice Law, Vanderbilt Law School

Course II

The International Arbitration Experiential Learning (2 credit hours) *Experiential learning credits – 2 of 6 required for graduation

This course is designed to acquaint students in the understanding of both public and private international law rules from an arbitral perspective. Special emphasis will be made on international economic law. Inquiry is made into the sources of international law and will include related bodies of rules involving more than one legal and political system. Hence, particular reference will be made to new sources of global law such as the Unidroit Principles for international commercial contracts and lex mercatoria. We will focus on the understanding of doctrines, institutions and applications using historical, political and jurisprudential perspectives.

The topics employed to explore these themes include:

  • Sources of international law
  • The European Community Law experience
  • The Hague Peace system for intergovernmental dispute settlement and ICJ
  • WTO and economic disputes
  • Mixed arbitration: State contracts; ICSID, the Iran-US Claims Tribunal and UNCC
  • Transnational commercial arbitration

[Course runs entire length of program]

Taught by Professor Fabrizio Marrella, Professor of International Law, University of Venice & Antonio Fraticelli (Senior Attorney in Bologna)

Course III

International Energy Law (2 credit hours)

Given its central importance to economic development, welfare and power, energy is a more than simply a sector or a commodity. It has a strategic character that makes it susceptible to politicization and conflict, and an international dimension that creates demands for cooperation among governments and international engagement by private parties. This course provides an introduction to how international law regulates energy activities. It analyzes the legal framework for trade and investment in the energy sector, covering international rules that government lawyers and lawyers representing private energy firms would encounter, including World Trade Organization rules, investment treaties and arbitration (such as the Energy Charter Treaty and NAFTA), and EU rules. We will also discuss the environmental aspects of international energy law, paying special attention to the way laws addressing climate change influence the energy sector. Finally, energy companies are among the most significant transnational corporations, operating around the globe in countries with diverse economies and systems of government. The course will therefore provide an overview of corporate responsibility and human rights consequences of energy activities. By the end of the course, students will be able to critically assess the key legal issues around the exploitation of energy sources from a multidisciplinary and global standpoint.

[Course runs last two weeks of program]

Taught by Timothy Meyer, Professor of Law, FedEx Research Professor, Director, International Legal Studies Program, Vanderbilt Law School