Acta Juridica 2009

Weighing Global Regulatory Rules and Decisions in National Courts

Benedict Kingsbury

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Global regulatory governance is increasingly conducted by extra-national institutions adopting administrative-style rules and regulations, or specific decisions concerning individual entities, which affect private actors or state agencies in ways that eventually come to be considered in national courts. This global regulatory governance produces unfamiliar challenges for national courts. Traditional analysis of ‘international law in national courts’ is germane, but does not reach many of the current generation of legal problems. This paper assesses some existing conceptual resources for dealing with these problems, and proposes a distinctive normative approach to a particular set of hard cases based on evaluation by the national court of the extent to which a particular rule or decision of the global regulatory institution satisfies criteria of ‘publicness’.