Transplanting international courts: The law and politics of the andean tribunal of justice

Karen Alter, Laurence R. Helfer

Research output: Book/ReportBook

24 Scopus citations


The Andean Pact was founded in 1969 to build a common market in South America. Andean leaders copied the institutional and treaty design of the European Community, and in the 1970s, member states decided to add a tribunal, again turning to the European Community as its model. Since its first ruling in 1987, the Andean Tribunal of Justice (ATJ) has exercised authority over the countries which are members of the Andean Community: Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru (formerly also Venezuela). It is now the third most active international court in the world, used by governments and private actors to protect their rights and interests in the region. This book investigates how a region with weak legal institutions developed an effective international rule of law, why the ATJ was able to induce widespread respect for Andean intellectual property rules but not other areas governed by regional integration rules, and what the ATJ’s experience means for comparable international courts. It also assesses the Andean experience in order to reconsider the European Community system, exploring why the law and politics of integration in Europe and the Andes followed different trajectories. Finally, it provides a detailed analysis of the key factors associated with effective supranational adjudication. This book collects together previously published material by two leading interdisciplinary scholars of international law and politics, and is enhanced by three original chapters further reflecting on the Andean legal order.

Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages312
ISBN (Electronic)9780199680788
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017


  • Andean legal order
  • Andean pact
  • Andean tribunal of justice
  • Common market
  • European community
  • Intellectual property
  • South america

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)


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