JUS5851 – International Investment Law

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

Choose semester

Course content

The course concerns the relationship between foreign investors and host country governments under international law. The main focus of the course is on the protection of foreign investment against political interference from the host country government, but the potential responsibilites of the foreign investor against the host country and its population will also be dealt with.

Protection of foreign investment has always been a part of international law. Since world war II, and especially during the last 10-20 years, the field has however undergone a transformation. While foreign investors earlier had to rely on diplomatic protection from their home state, international investment law to day is based on a system of arbitral settlement of disputes between the investors and host country governments. As a consequence, this field has now acquired a genuine and practical significance, both for companies making investments abroad and for the host countries where such investments are made.

The course encompasses the history, development and basic architecture of international investment law, as well as the main rules and standards of the substantive law as set out in primarily bilateral investment treaties and developed by international arbitral tribunals through arbitral practice.

The aim of the course is to develop an understanding of the nature and function of the various legal instruments, mechanisms and processes constituting international investment law, as well as the key issues of the substantive law. The course also aims to provide a critical perspective on the function of the law and its future development.

For students enrolled in Rettsvitenskap (jus) (master - 5 år): Have you considered a specialization as part of your degree? The course is part of the profile Internasjonale kommersielle relasjoner

Read more about profiles.

Learning outcome

The course aims to give an understanding of the nature and function of the various legal instruments, mechanisms and processes constituting international investment law. It further aims to develop an in-depth understanding of key issues of the substantive law and policy of foreign investment protection, as well as a critical perspective on the function of the law and its future development.

You may read more about achievement requirements under Detailed course information for the current semester.


You may register for this course if you have admission to a Master’s programme at UiO or the faculty's exchange programme. You can also register for this course if you do not have admission to any programme at UiO, but meet the formal prerequistites.

All students are required meet the formal prerequistites.

Have you met the formal prerequisites at another institution than the University of Oslo, and the results are not formally registered at UiO, you must apply for admission to courses at Master’s level . Students with admission to Master’s degree programmes at other faculties than The Faculty of Law must also apply for admission.

When your admission is in order you must register for courses in StudentWeb


Formal prerequisite knowledge

Students must fill one of these requirements:

  • Passed 1st - 3rd year of the 5-years degree Master of Laws (Master i rettsvitenskap at UiO) (or exams that qualify for exemption for these) or
  • Hold a 5-years Master’s degree in Laws (Master i rettsvitenskap at UiO) or equivalent.

Exemptions from the formal prerequisites will be given to students with admission to the faculty's own exchange or master’s degree programmes. This rule does not apply to students with admission to other master’s degree programmes at the University of Oslo, unless otherwise agreed.

Recommended previous knowledge

Students are expected to have basic knowledge of international law.



Language of teaching for this course is English. This means that all communication during lectures/seminars will be in English, and all literature and auxiliary materials are in English.


Written examination, 4 hours.

Examination support material

This is an open book digital school examination. You are permitted to use any materials written on paper during the examination. This includes books, lecture materials and your own notes, whether handwritten or printed. There are no restrictions on marking up or highlighting these written materials. No electronic support materials are allowed.

Use of sources and rules for citing. 

The standard rules on cheating and plagiarism which apply to assignments apply also to the written open book examination. This means that you must provide a reference whenever you draw upon another person’s ideas, words or research in your answer to the exam question(s). You cannot copy text directly from textbooks, journal articles, court judgments etc. without highlighting that the text is copied.

Thus, pieces of text quoted verbatim from these and other sources must be italicised or otherwise highlighted so that it is obvious that the pieces of text are quotes.

Example of highlighting in a text:

"Laurent Bailay and Bernard Van der Lande propose to define a mobile payment as a “payment for products or services between two parties for which a mobile device, such as a mobile phone, plays a key role in the realization of the payment”. (European Commission, GREEN PAPER Towards an integrated European market for card, internet and mobile payments, page 5)"

Failure to cite sources or highlight quotes in your exam answer may be considered as evidence of cheating.

Previous exams

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English, and you submit your response in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Marking criteria 

This  guide is used by examiners for grading this course.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take this exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

There are special rules for resitting a passed examination in the master's programme in Law.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The course is subject to continuous evaluation. At regular intervals we also ask students to participate in a more comprehensive evaluation.


The language for this course is English. Students enrolled in the
Masterprogrammet i rettsvitenskap must pass one
English subject as part of their degree, this course will meet these

Facts about this course






Every spring


Every spring

Teaching language