06260164 - Legal environment of international business

Crédits ECTS 3
Volume horaire total 20
Volume horaire CM 12
Volume horaire TD 8




This course will introduce legal frameworks relevant to the conduct of business across the world. Participants will learn key differences in contract law between the main legal traditions, as well as the legal frameworks for contractual relations across borders, including mechanisms for commercial arbitration.

  • The key rules to be found in each of the common-law, civil-law and Islamic-law traditions as regards formation, validity, breach and termination of contracts
  • The problems and solutions related to making and application of contracts across borders
  • The available regimes for resolution of international business disputes via private arbitration
  • The current environment for business provided by European Union treaties, legislation and case-law

  • Appreciation of the different outcomes to be expected in contractual relationships and disputes that occur in jurisdictions belonging to different legal traditions
  • Knowledge of the basic legal issues that will need to be taken into account in international contractual relations
  • Understanding of the prevailing mechanisms for conflict-of-laws resolution and international commercial arbitration
  • Appreciation of the specificity of European Union law as regards oportunities for, and demands on, business
  • Ability to explain how these legal principles would apply in given practical scenarios


CM no. 1 - Basic principles of contract in the three main legal traditions
TD no. 1 - Workshop on case-studies of contractual disputes

CM no. 2 - International contracts and conflict-of-laws mechanisms
TD no. 2 - Workshop on case-studies concerning problematic international contracts

CM no. 3 - International Commercial Arbitration
TD no. 3 - Workshop on case-studies of international arbitration

CM no. 4 - European Union law on business
TD no. 4 - Final exam (written individual answers about case-studies relating to all course aspects)


  • D. Johnson, European Business (London: Routledge, 2015)
  • M.L. Moses, The Principles and Practice of International Commercial Arbitration (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2012)
  • M. Reimann & R. Zimmerman (eds), The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Law (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2006)

Further articles or sources will be suggested as the course progresses.

Contrôles des connaissances

Final Exam
  • Written 2h
  • 60% of final mark, answers to written questions

Continuing Examination
  • In class Examination
  • 40% of final mark

Informations complémentaires

The basic grounding in the differences of legal tradition relating to business, as well as in the international structures affecting business, will be delivered via lectures. For the tutorial sessions, the students will be divided into groups and asked to examine case-studies dealing with particular contractual disputes and arbitration cases across borders, and to apply what has been covered in the lectures to those circumstances.

No formal background in law is required.