A complex system of international courts and tribunals 1
This chapter highlights the growth of international dispute settlement mechanisms in modern international law and the many roles that such international judicial and quasi-judicial bodies have assumed. It demonstrates the importance of international dispute settlement as a way to resolve disputes in a non-litigation venue while still creating regimes that have the potential to mould the future of international laws that impact sustainable development. The chapter discusses the Bering Sea Fur-Seals case, which demonstrated that many of the core principles of sustainable development existed in nascent form in arbitral decisions from over a century ago. The Manual on International Courts and Tribunals explains that the most commonly asked questions relating to international dispute settlement mechanisms include those relating to the physical existence of specific courts and tribunals at the regional and international level and to issues of personal and subject matter jurisdiction related to these courts and tribunals.