Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 17 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines from a comparative perspective the national legal regimes that govern treaty-making and treaty withdrawal, functions that in many countries were traditionally vested in the executive. Drawing from an original data set that covers 101 countries for the period 1815–2013, the chapter identifies several large-scale trends. First, it confirms a sustained trend toward greater parliamentary involvement in treaty-making. Second, it shows that many countries recognize executive agreements and other alternative procedures through which the executive can conclude internationally binding agreements without parliamentary approval, but that these “workarounds” are typically subject to significant constraints affecting the executive’s discretion and the domestic legal status of the resulting agreements. Third, it shows that in recent years several countries have introduced constraints on the executive’s ability to withdraw from treaties without parliamentary approval. Finally, it draws attention to the little-noticed role of national judiciaries in treaty-making, by showing that in many legal systems treaties are subject to constitutional review prior to ratification. The chapter discusses the implications of these four trends, all of which represent moves away from the executive-dominated world of traditional treaty relations. It hypothesizes that these trends respond to growing separation of powers concerns as treaties increasingly shape domestic law.

Keywords: treaties, treaty-making, treaty withdrawal, comparative foreign relations law, comparative international law, executive agreements, judicial review

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.