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Legal Frontiers

Legal Frontiers is the new podcast from STL, providing research-based analysis of developments in transnational law and legal practice. Interviews, presentations and panel discussions will examine the intersection of law and transnational challenges such as climate change, new technologies, public health and economic relations, as well as directions in transnational dispute resolution.

1. Connectivity & Decoupling

update on May 1, 2020

In this episode, Mark Feldman and Stephen Minas discuss the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on transnational arbitration, as well as broader developments in transnational dispute resolution (including arbitration, mediation and international commercial courts) at a time of both the claimed economic ‘decoupling’ between the United States and China and the promotion of ‘connectivity’ agendas such as China’s Belt and Road Initiative.


2. China’s Supreme People’s Court in 2020: COVID-19 response, judicial modernization & Belt & Road Initiative

update on May 29, 2020

In this episode, Susan Finder and Stephen Minas discuss China’s highest court, the Supreme People’s Court (SPC), and key SPC developments in 2020: The SPC’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, various aspects of judicial modernization, the China International Commercial Court within the SPC, and the SPC’s “Opinion on providing services and guarantees for the Belt & Road”. Susan Finder is Distinguished Scholar in Residence at STL and author of the Supreme People’s Court Monitor blog.


3. International cleantech cooperation: Climate change, WIPO Green & the Paris Agreement

update on June 5, 2020

In this episode, Joy Xiang and Stephen Minas discuss intellectual property rights management for clean technologies, innovation in developed & developing countries, international cleantech cooperation under trade & climate change law, & the role of cleantech in building back better from the COVID-19 pandemic. They also discuss Professor Xiang’s proposals for strengthening cleantech cooperation. Joy Xiang is assistant professor at STL & a 2019/20 fellow at the Asian Law Institute, National University of Singapore.


4. Refugee law, asylum justice and closed borders

update on August 3, 2020

In this episode, Liu Yue and Stephen Minas discuss refugee law and the process of seeking asylum in both developed and developing countries. Yue shares his experience working with refugees and asylum seekers in Bangkok, Thailand. The discussion also explores recent asylum cases concerning the US southern border, the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic for refugees and asylum seekers and UNHCR reactions. Liu Yue is a C.V. Starr lecturer at STL and was a Volunteer Legal Advocate for urban refugees with Asylum Access Thailand in Bangkok prior to joining STL. He holds a a J.D. from University of California, Hastings College of the Law, and a B.A. in English from Fudan University.


5. Legal services disrupted: Technology & innovation

update on October 13, 2020

Technology and changing business models are disrupting the legal profession, legal services and law schools. In this episode, Ray Campbell and Stephen Minas discuss the possibilities as well as limitations of LawTech and LegalTech innovations in the legal profession, such as online dispute resolution and the use of artificial intelligence in courts; regulatory change to encourage innovation; and the future of law schools. Professor Campbell is a scholar of civil procedure and professional responsibility at STL. His research concentrates on the intersection of law and commerce, with a special focus on the changing nature of the legal services marketplace in light of technological and economic innovations.


6. International climate change law and negotiations in times of COVID-19

update on November 16, 2020

In the 1st STL Law & Sustainability Colloquium session, Christoph Schwarte reflected on how the pandemic may affect the international body of law related to climate change, and provided an overview on the specific challenges for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) process. Christoph is executive director of Legal Response International (LRI) – a London based charity that provides free legal support to developing countries and civil society observer organisations in connection with the international climate change negotiations. The webinar was recorded on November 4th.


7. The BRICS, BRICS law, & law in the time of oxymora

update on December 9, 2020

In this episode, Professor Rostam J. Neuwirth & Dr Stephen Minas discuss the ‘cooperation & dialogue platform’ of the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China & South Africa) & legal developments in BRICS cooperation, such as the creation of the New Development Bank, as well as Prof. Neuwirth’s concept of ‘legal oxymora’. Rostam Neuwirth is the Head of the Department of Global Legal Studies at the University of Macau.

8. Regime Divergence or Convergence? Law of the Sea and Climate Change

update on December 17, 2020

In the 2nd session of the STL Law & Sustainability Colloquium, Dr Nilüfer Oral discussed the existing frameworks in relation to protection of the marine environment under the 1982 UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) and climate change under the 1992 UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) regime. The discussion identified the gaps within each regime, the gaps between the two regimes and how synergies may be developed to address the important climate risks to the health of the ocean. Dr Oral is Director of the Centre of International Law (CIL) at the National University of Singapore and is a member of the UN International Law Commission and Co-chair of the Study Group on sea-level rise in relation to international law.

9. The AIIB, multilateral development banks & the law of international organizations

update on March 8, 2021

In the 1st episode of 2021, Peter Quayle and Stephen Minas discuss the establishment & early years of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, the practice of institutional law at MDBs and other international organizations, & the role of international administrative tribunals. Peter Quayle is a Visiting Fellow at the Lauterpacht Centre for International Law, University of Cambridge & Visiting Professor of International Organizations Law at Peking University Law School. Previously, he was Chief Counsel & established the corporate law function at the AIIB. His current academic research focuses on the employment law of the international civil service.

10. China’s Digital Currency

update on March 22, 2021

In this episode, Dr Oriol Caudevilla discusses central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), how they are different to cryptocurrencies, the development of China’s digital yuan and its implications. Last April, the Chinese Government announced the starting of the tests of the country’s CBDC, DCEP (Digital Currency Electronic Payment) or Digital Yuan, in four major cities. In August, the Ministry of Commerce announced that a pilot run of the country’s CBDC would begin in several new areas, the Greater Bay Area among them, which includes Hong Kong and Macau. According to the Bank of International Settlements (BIS) in early 2020, 80% of Central Banks in the world are currently working on CBDCs, but Asia seems to be the place where CBDCs arouse more interest. Dr Caudevilla is Chief Strategy Officer at ScallopX, Management Consultant at AirHelp and Advisor for a Hong Kong-based FinTech company, ixFintech, among other roles.

11. Biodiversity 2050: Can the Convention on Biological Diversity deliver a world living in harmony with nature?

update on April 12, 2021

The Convention on Biological Diversity’s “2050 Vision” aims to achieve a world that is “living in harmony with nature”. Yet biodiversity is threatened globally to an extent never before witnessed in human history. Today, we sit on the brink of the possible realization of a significant shift in the operation of the convention: the projected conclusion of the CBD’s post-2020 framework when parties meet in Kunming, China for the 15th Conference of the Parties. Can this process move the CBD from an instrument of aspiration to one of action? Dr Michelle Lim is Senior Lecturer, Macquarie Law School and was a fellow on the IPBES Global Assessment.

12. Exploring the Interlinkages Between Climate Change and Agriculture and Legal and Policy Implications

update on July 7, 2021

Agriculture, forestry and land use are responsible for approximately 23% of global GHG emissions that contribute to climate change, representing a bigger share than other important sectors such as transportation. At the same time, agriculture is one of the sectors already more affected by changing climatic conditions. Agriculture has been included in international instruments and negotiations under the UNFCCC and the Paris Agreement, but the translation of international targets to national policies and action is not without its challenges. This webinar explores interlinkages between agriculture and climate change, providing an overview of how international and national laws play a role in promoting more ‘climate-smart’ agriculture practices.
Dr Fabiano de Andrade Correa is Lead Counsel on Peace, Justice and Governance with the Centre for International Sustainable Development Law (CISDL) and teaches regularly in LUISS University’s Masters in Food Law, as well as guest lecturing at other universities.