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Social and Behavioral Sciences Commons

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Selected Works

2009

Articles

Timothy Meyer

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Full-Text Articles in Social and Behavioral Sciences

Soft Law As Delegation, Timothy L. Meyer Dec 2008

Soft Law As Delegation, Timothy L. Meyer

Timothy Meyer

This article examines one of the most important trends in international legal governance since the end of the Cold War: the rise of “soft law,” or legally non-binding instruments that are given legal effect through domestic law or internationally binding agreements such as treaties. Scholars studying the design of international agreements have long puzzled over why states use soft law. The decision to make an agreement or obligation legally binding is within the control of the states negotiating the content of the legal obligations. Basic contract theory predicts that parties to a contract would want their agreement to be as ...