On 10 December 1982, after almost 15 years of discussion, deliberation and negotiation, the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea was adopted and opened for signature in Jamaica. The support for the Convention was immediate, and unprecedented – as demonstrated by the 119 signatures appended to the Convention on the day of its adoption. Support for the Convention has remained strong over the intervening 40 years: the Convention has now been ratified by 168 States Parties and further developed through two implementing agreements, with a third currently under negotiation. It has become globally accepted as a key framework of international law and is considered ‘The Constitution of the Oceans’.
In anticipation of the 40th anniversary of the Convention’s adoption on 10 December 1982, the Centre for International and Public Law (CIPL, ANU) and the Australian and New Zealand Society of International Law (ANZSIL) are hosting a program of events throughout 2022.
A series of webinars will be convened throughout the year, commencing in February 2022, with a particular focus on the development of the Convention and the negotiations at the Third United Nations Conference on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS III). The webinars will provide an opportunity for senior scholars and practitioners who have engaged with the Convention over the course of the last forty years to reflect on those negotiations and their impact upon the law of the sea in 2022, and to reflect on UNCLOS III and the Convention from Australian, New Zealand, Pacific and global perspectives, and to consider the role and effects of the institutions of the Convention, and its dispute settlement framework. The webinars are open to all. Please find more details for each seminar through the links below, and register to join via Zoom.
40th Anniversary Conference
To conclude the year, a conference will be convened on 10 December 2022, which will provide an opportunity to assess the Convention at 40 and debate and discuss the challenges and opportunities facing the law of the sea in this decade and beyond. The conference will have a forward-looking focus, and will strongly feature early career researchers and practitioners, and doctoral candidates. Conference details will be released in coming months.
Call for papers
Early career scholars and practitioners (including doctoral candidates) and mid-career scholars and practitioners (up to 15 years post-PhD), whether in Australia, New Zealand, throughout the Indo-Pacific, and globally, are invited to submit a proposal.
We invite proposals which re-examine and re-evaluate the Convention in light of new social, political, environmental, strategic and technological challenges, and reflect on how we might re-shape, reinforce or reconsider the LOSC to meet future realities.
Proposals should be submitted in a single Word document comprising an abstract of 250-300 words, a biographical note of 100-150 words, and a one page CV by COB Monday 8 August 2022. Applicants will be advised if their papers have been successful as soon as possible, and by Friday 26 August 2022 at the latest.
Find out more
Program of Events
Australian and New Zealand Perspectives on the Negotiations at UNCLOS III
Thursday 24 February 2022
Pacific Perspectives on the Negotiations at UNCLOS III
Tuesday 26 April 2022
Global Perspectives on the Negotiations at UNCLOS III
In conjunction with 2022 annual conference of ANZSIL
UNCLOS III and the Institutions of the LOSC
Tuesday 23 August 2022
UNCLOS III and the LOSC Dispute Settlement Framework
Tuesday 25 October 2022
New Horizons: The future of the United
Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea
Saturday 10 December 2022
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