Dr Alberto Alvarez-Jimenez (He/Him)

Senior Lecturer (Law)

Qualifications: PhD University of Ottawa, LLM McGill University, LLB (summa cum laude) La Sabana University.

About Me

Kia ora.

Acquiring a strong legal education often requires the nurturing of other interests. In my case: art, architecture, music, and literature.

The novels that I have read in the last few months are The Odyssey (Homer), Crime and Punishment (F. Dostoyevsky), The Loss of El Dorado (V.S. Naipaul), El Libro de los Suenos (The Book of Dreams) (J.L. Borges), Gifts (Nurudinn Farah), Mara and Dann (D. Lessing), The Golden Notebook (D. Lessing), Season of Anomy (W. Soyinka), Small Island (A. Levy), God Dies by the Nile (Nawal El Saadawi), The God of Small Things (Arundhati Roy), Cien Anos de Soledad (One Hundred Years of Solitude) (G. Garcia Marquez),1984 (G. Orwell), The Bone People (Keri Hulme), Potiki (Patricia Grace) and Breaking Connections (Maualaivao Albert Wendt).

Papers I Teach

Research Interests

My research agenda concentrates on public international law, international trade law, and foreign investment law. I have published more than 30 articles in prominent peer-reviewed journals. Among them are the American Journal of International Law (AJIL Unbound), the European Journal of International Law, the Journal of International Economic Law, the International and Comparative Law Quarterly, and the World Trade Review.

My scholarship is multidisciplinary and includes economics, political science and history. I also explore the intersections between art and international law.

My research has recently been recognised by Pierre-Marie Dupuy in his book on Customary International Law. This book consists of a comprehensive spectrum of articles published in the last seven decades and includes publications by some of the most prominent judges and scholars of the 20th and 21st century, of which several are past Presidents of the International Court of Justice. In this edited volume Dupuy included my article titled "Methods for the Identification of Customary International Law in the International Court of Justice’s New Millennium Jurisprudence: 2000–2009”.

I often present my research at events organized by the American Society of International Law, the European Society of International Law, the Society of International Economic Law, the Asian Society of International Law, and the Australian and New Zealand Society of International Law.

I supervise postgraduate students in the following areas:

Public International Law; International Organizations; International Trade Law; International Investment Law; and International Security.

Ongoing  doctoral supervision:

"Human Rights; Intellectual Property Rights as an Investment and Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) Mechanism". Dilara Aydin.

Current Research Projects

    1. "Developments in the Interpretation of the Customary Rule of Necessity Prompted by the Covid-19 Pandemic".

    The customary rule of necessity is the last resource a State has to excuse a violation of an international law obligation prompted by actions or omissions aimed at protecting an essential security interest. Regardless of whether it will be invoked in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic, this article has made use of the variety of experiences in several countries dealing with the virus to explore new layers of analysis of one of the requirements: lack of substantial contribution to the situation of necessity under Article 25(2) (b) of the International Law Commission's Articles on Responsibility of States for Internationally Wrongful Acts . Some of these layers are unprecedented in the context of the excuse. Their analysis can be relevant to future global or regional pandemics or other events, like the climate crisis, with significant scientific, political and economic controversies.

    2. "Intersections between International Humanitarian Law and Contemporary Dance: Embodied Collaborations". (with Associate Professor Karen Barbour.  School of Arts. University of Waikato).

    The main objective of this transdisciplinary project is to research how embodied investigation of international humanitarian law might inform our understanding of civilian tragedy, particularly considering the legal principles of distinction and proportionality. The project engages creative practice research methodology through embodied workshop methods undertaken over four months with a diverse group of experienced dance research assistants, a visual artist and videographer to document, and alongside co-researchers’ journal notes and focus group discussions.

    3. "Reconciliation in International Criminal Law and Transitional Justice". (with Sir David Baragwanath).

    4. "The Enforcement of Domestic Law in International Law and Adjudication".


Dispute Resolution; Human Rights; International Trade; Terrorism

International Investment Law, International Dispute Settlement, Public International Law, Law & Economics.

Recent Publications

  • Alvarez-Jimenez, A. (2020). International Investment Law, Time, and Economics: Fixing the length of economic crises as a costs-allocation tool between host states and foreign investors. World Trade Review, 19(1), 91-108. doi:10.1017/S1474745618000381 Open Access version:

  • Alvarez-Jimenez, A. (2020). The international law gaze: the security exception in international trade law. New Zealand Law Journal, 2, 75-79.

  • Alvarez-Jimenez, A. (2020). The international law gaze: COVID-19 and foreign investors. New Zealand Law Journal, 271, 300-304. Open Access version:

  • Alvarez-Jimenez, A. (2019). The international law gaze: subsequent agreements and subsequent practice in the interpretation of international treaties. New Zealand Law Journal, 2(March), 69-73. Open Access version:

Find more research publications by Alberto Alvarez-Jimenez (He/Him)

Contact Details

Email: [email protected]
Room: G.12. N. Block.
Phone: +64 7 838 4466 Ext 6309
Fax: + 64 7 838 4417