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: 07 March 2021

Abstract and Keywords

Judicial interpretation implicates a range of interacting social decision-making processes, including domestic, regional, and international political, administrative, judicial, and market processes – referred to collectively as institutions. In the case of the World Trade Organization (WTO), interpretive choices implicate the interaction of institutions for domestic, regional, and global governance. This article, which looks at the consequences of institutional choice in treaty interpretation by referring to examples from WTO case law, assesses interpretive decisions by examining how they allocate authority between different social decision-making processes. Focusing on the welfare and participatory implications of these choices, it offers two important conclusions, the first of which is that these choices impact upon social decision-making in terms of transparency, accountability, and legitimacy. Second, the choice of institutional alternatives – such as the incorporation of international standards, judicial balancing, delegation to markets, national deference, and process-based review – can determine which social decision-making process decides a particular policy issue, thereby affecting the institutional mediation of individual preferences.

Keywords: judicial interpretation, social decision-making, institutional choice, World Trade Organization, case law, transparency, accountability, legitimacy, judicial balancing, national deference

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.