The WTO and the Brics: towards a transnational legal culture?
PhD student: Mrs S. Chobanova
Promotor: Prof P.L.H. van den Bossche
Duration: 1/11/2012 - 31/10/2016
The work will undertake a comparative analysis of the legal traditions in Brazil, Russia, India and China and will examine how these legal cultures with interact in the process of WTO governance. The definition of the term legal culture will be discussed and the different approaches in the literature. The question to be asked here is whether changes in law are a consequence of social changes or, in contrast, social changes are produced by changes in the law. The development in the legal cultures of the BRICs will be scrutinised and compared to draw consequences as to some common features which bring them together and differentiate them from the Western legal culture. The manifestation of these specificities on WTO level will be examined, in particular in the dispute settlement mechanism, and the question will be posed as to whether and to what extent the WTO lends itself to influence from national legal traditions (other than the West) and whether, conversely, the BRICs internal legal orders are influenced in this process. The ultimate question to be asked is what the paramount values extracted from the multilateral interaction are and how they can be applied in the future of WTO governance.