NGOs as Amicus Curiae: Can they Influence the Outcome of International Litigation and if so, in What Ways?

Degree Name

MA in International and Intercultural Management

First Advisor

Karen Blanchard


The topic of this paper is “NGOs as Amicus Curiae: can they influence the outcome of international litigation and if so, in what ways?” This paper reflects the role of amicus curiae (friend of the court-Latin) submissions made by nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) in international litigation. The paper begins with an overview of the definition of NGOs and their general role in the development of civil society. The research, employing a combination of quantitative and qualitative methods, is based on the overview of the academic sources and conditions for amicus participation at the four selected international tribunals and their case law concerning NGOs’ amicus participation, as well as on the interviews with ten experts from international NGOs actively participating in international litigation.

The conclusions drawn by the research reflect the differences in the ability of NGOs’ amicus submission to influence the outcome of the litigation depending on the tribunal’s procedural regulations and the nature of the issues it considers. The research emphasizes the importance of the quality of legal submissions and their innovative nature for filing of an influential amicus brief.

The research’s practical applicability is aimed at assisting inexperienced NGOs to understand the benefits and drawbacks of amicus participation in international litigation and to demonstrate in the ways an NGO’s amicus brief can affect an outcome of litigation.


Courts | International Law

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