The Evolution of International Law
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The international legal system comprises norms, processes, and institutions. The interaction of these elements creates international law’s authority, legitimacy, and effectiveness. International law is therefore implemented and given effect less through the threat of sanctions than through the cumulative actions of the system’s stakeholders. This self-enforcing characteristic is often regarded as a weakness or flaw in international law as a legal system, but in fact it provides international law the opportunity to grow and to develop as it responds to changing needs and values.
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Weiss, T., & Wilkinson, R.
International Organization and Global Governance