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Title: Self-determination and state-building in international law : a right in abeyance?
Author: Melandri, M.
ISNI:       0000 0004 8498 2784
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2016
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This thesis explores the significance and impact of the principle of self-determination in current international law by focusing on its use in the context of state-building practice. The nature of state-building efforts brings in self-determination concerns because rebuilding a state often requires a radical re-structuring of the state. This process may include also the need to make and implement decisions with respect to certain fundamental constitutional and economic arrangements. Such exercises are generally supposed to be made by the people but are frequently designed, orchestrated and possibly also influenced by international state-builders. In this context, does the right to self-determination protect local populations from the intervention of international state-builders in domestic affairs? And if so, how and in which ways? The main argument set forward in this thesis is that international law on selfdetermination is not without relevance in this context, but its significance and impact remain still largely unknown in legal scholarship. As a result, self-determination runs the risk of remaining, in many respects, a right in abeyance. To overcome this risk, and in order to fill the existing gap in the knowledge, this thesis proposes to adopt a new way to study the relevance of self-determination in relation to this specific context. To do so, first it identifies a specific aspect of self-determination that applies in relation to state-building - namely, the right as it attaches to the people of an independent state. Second, it provides the first systemic account of this aspect of the norm, setting forward an original interpretation of the scope, meaning and character of this right. Third, it approaches the study of practice in state-building through the lens of the normative account thus developed, aiming to explore the contribution of state practice in the development and attribution of meaning to the norm.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available