Thesis title: Development of law of the sea by UNCLOS dispute settlement procedures: towards a coherent jurisprudence?
Ke Song is an international consultant at the Fisheries and Aquaculture Division of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Rome, Italy, focusing on law and policies underpinning decent work and social protection in fisheires. He earned his PhD in international law from the University of Edinburgh in Scotland (2022). He obtained two diplomas in international law, a master's degree in international law of the sea from China University of Political Science and Law in China (2017) and an LLM in international dispute settlement from Leiden University in the Netherlands (2017).
His research interests include general public international law, the law of the sea, international institutional law, international environmental law, and international dispute settlement. He has worked at several international organizations, including the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea in Hamburg, Germany, the UN International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in the Haag, the Netherlands, and the UN Headquarters in New York City, USA. He is also a rapporteur for Oxford International Organizations (Oxford University Press).
- Passed the Chinese Bar Examination
International Law Ordinary
Open to PhD supervision enquiries?
Judicial Settlement of Disputes; International Courts and Tribunals; International Law of the Sea; International Institutional Law; International Criminal Law.
Past project grants
2022, Full scholarship, International Foundation for the Law of the Sea Summer Academy, Hamburg, Germany
2022, Full scholarship, Hague Academy of International Law, Hague, the Netherlands (My scholarship is sponsored by the Chinese Embassy in the Netherlands)
2022, Gill Hollis Tercentenary Award, iCourts / PluriCourts PhD Summer School 2022
2021, Full Funding for the internship at the ITLOS, Chinese Scholarship Council
2021, Erasmus+ programme funding for the internship at the ITLOS, University of Edinburgh
2019, Gill Hollis Tercentenary Award for Travel
2018-2020, Funding for the activities of International Dispute Settlement Discussion Group, University of Edinburgh, School of Law
2017, Full Funding for PhD at Edinburgh University, Chinese Scholarship Council
International Foundation for the Law of the Sea Summer AcademyInternational Foundation for the Law of the Sea Summer Academy
Aug 2022 - Sep 2022
The Hague Academy of International Law - Académie de droit international de La HayeThe Hague Academy of International Law - Académie de droit international de La Haye
Jun 2022 - Jul 2022Jun 2022 - Jul 2022
iCourts / PluriCourts PhD Summer School 2022iCourts / PluriCourts PhD Summer School 2022
Jun 2022 - Jun 2022
I am the co-founder and convenor of International Dispute Settlement Study Group at Edinburgh Law School. Working with other PhD students at the Edinburgh Law School, I have taken the lead and organised several lectures on international dispute settlement. Some lectures are listed below:
Professor Gabrielle Marceau, She discussed contemporary issues and responded to specific questions regarding international dispute settlement, 6 March 2019. <https://www.law.ed.ac.uk/news-events/news/prof-gabrielle-marceau-speaks-inaugural-discussion-group-international-dispute>
Professor Kaj Hober, Sovereign Immunity from Execution of Arbitral Awards, 11 November 2019. <https://www.currentstudents.law.ed.ac.uk/2019/11/04/annual-lecture-of-the-international-dispute-settlement-discussion-group-11-november-at-10-12-am-at-elder-room-the-playfair-library/>
Professor Joanna Mossop, Future Dispute Settlement Procedures of Conservation and Sustainable Use of Marine Biological Diversity of Areas Beyond National Jurisdiction, 10 December 2019, <https://www.law.ed.ac.uk/news-events/events/future-dispute-settlement-procedures-conservation-and-sustainable-use-marine>
Dr. James Devaney, Reappraising The Role of Experts in Recent Cases Before the International Court of Justice, 28 January 2020. <https://www.law.ed.ac.uk/news-events/events/reappraising-role-experts-recent-cases-international-court-justice-james-devaney>
Together with PhD community of Edinburgh Law School, I am one of the co-convenors of the 2020 Edinburgh Postgraduate Law Conference, namely ‘Law and the New World Order’, 3 – 4 February 2020 <https://www.lawphdconference.ed.ac.uk/about-2/eplc-2020/>
I have assisted Dr Ana Maria Daza Vargas of the moot court in her LLM courses “International Investment Arbitration: Theory and Practice (2018-2019)”.
During the pandemic, I participated in annual meetings of Asia Society of International Law, American Society of International Law, regional international law workshops. I have successfully established good connections with peers and senior fellows in the virtual world and even managed to meet some of them in real coffee shops.
Doctoral Workshop: ‘Method in International Legal Research’
Speaker and participants, 7 June 2019, Glasgow Law School and Edinburgh Law School
- Presented a draft paper that discussed how to identify and characterize problematic divergences of international case law. It addressed highly theoretical and challenging issues that serve as the theoretical foundation of my PhD thesis. I have luckily received constructive feedbacks from PhD peers as well as some senior academic members, such as Professor Gerry Simpson, Professor Sundhya Pahuja, and Dr. Michelle Burgis-Kasthala. Now this draft paper has been carefully polished and became Chapter 2 of the PhD thesis.
International Dispute Settlement Discussion Group, Edinburgh Law School
Speaker and the founder of the Discussion Group, 17 April 2019, Teaching Room 2, Old College, the University of Edinburgh
- Presented a paper entitled “Identifying ‘Real Disputes’ in Advisory Proceedings: Legal Questions on Chagos Archipelago and Consequentialist Argument.”
Inaugural Edinburgh-Glasgow International Law Workshop
Speaker, 8-10 April 2019, Old College, the University of Edinburgh
- Presented a draft paper entitled “Conflicting Jurisprudence of the UNCLOS Dispute Settlement Mechanism
and the Problem of Judicial Fragmentation.” This research paper has received some constructive feedbacks from Dr. Marie-Catherine Petersmann. Now this draft paper has been significantly expanded and become Chapter 4 of the PhD thesis.
A Vision for Ocean Law and Governance: 2020-2030 and Beyond, hosted by Strathclyde Center for Environmental Law and Governance
Poster Presenter, 4-5 December 2019, University of Strathclyde Technology and Innovation Centre,
99 George St Glasgow
- Presented a poster entitled “The Chamber for Marine Environmental Disputes”. The academic work on the same topic has published at the Oxford International Organisations (Oxford University Press).
Utrecht University-The University of Edinburgh Law of the Sea PhD Workshop
Speaker, 18-19 April 2018, Utrecht Law School, Netherlands.
- Did a presentation entitled “Evolution of UNCLOS through International Courts and Tribunals-- a Study on the Consistency and Coherence of Judicial Development of International Law”. This presentation has clearly demonstrated the overall structure of my PhD thesis and has received positive feedbacks and constructive suggestions from the law of the sea faculty of the Utrecht Law School.
Edinburgh Postgraduate Law Conference
Speaker, 18-19 January 2018, Edinburgh Law School, Playfair Library, Scotland, UK.
- Presented a speech entitled “Future Dispute Settlement Mechanism for Deep Seabed Regime.”
Symposium on International Law at Sea
Speaker, 15-16 March 2018, Xueyuanlu Campus, China University of Political Science and Law, Beijing, China.
- Presented a paper entitled “Judicial Settlement of Law Enforcement at Sea --Interpretative method, Jurisdiction and Applicable Law.”
- I have received constructive feedbacks from other speakers and the revised version of the paper has been published at a leading international law journal two years later.
Symposium on the Principle of Effective Control in International Law
Speaker, 11-12 November 2017, Xueyuanlu Campus, China University of Political Science and Law, Beijing, China.
- Presented a speech entitled “Attribution of Responsibility to UN Military Peacekeepers: Rethinking the ‘Effective Control’ Criteria and the Future Development.”
- The revised version of the paper has been published at an edited book.
Seminar on Peaceful Settlement of International Disputes and the Functions of International Judicial Bodies
Speaker, 13-14 Mar 2017
Science and Research Building, Xueyuanlu Campus, China University of Political Science and Law, Beijing, China.
- Presented a speech entitled “Identifying and Characterizing Mixed Disputes: Jurisdiction, Admissibility and Applicable Law in UNCLOS Litigation”, in the Session namely “ICJ, ITLOS and International Arbitration.”
Seminar on Navigating the South China Sea: Challenges and Opportunities
Speaker, 10 Mar 2017, Senate Room (Academy Building), University of Groningen, Groningen, Netherlands
- Presented a speech entitled “An Analysis on Identification of Maritime Features Disputes in South China Sea Arbitral Award.”
- Detailed information on Seminar, See http://www.rug.nl/research/east-asian-studies/supporting_docs/seminar-programme-scs.pdf?from=singlemessage&isappinstalled=0
Workshop on Maritime Disputes in the South China Sea, University of Cologne, Cologne, The Germany
Speaker, Nov 5, 2016
- Presented a speech entitled “On the jurisdiction of arbitral tribunals under Annex VII of the UNCLOS over ‘mixed dispute’ - Legal analysis and its implications for South China Sea disputes”
- I am the only student amongst law professors to attend and speak on this workshop
- Detailed information on Seminar, See http://gssc.uni-koeln.de/node/1300
'The Battle of Ideas under LOSC Dispute Settlement Procedures', The International Journal of Marine and Coastal Law (38) 2023, 1-21.
The case note on the Whaling in the Antarctic (Australia v. Japan: New Zealand intervening), Oxford International Organizations, Oxford University Press, 2022 (forthcoming) (International law encyclopedia)
'Book Review: Caroline E. Foster: Global Regulatory Standards in Environmental and Health Disputes', International Journal of Marine and Coastal Law 2023, vo. xx (forthcoming).
Co-authored with Xuechan Ma, “Individual Opinions as an Agent of International Legal Development?”, Journal of International Dispute Settlement 2022, vol.xx https://academic.oup.com/jids/advance-article-abstract/doi/10.1093/jnlids/idac004/6530356
“Assembly of State Parties to the Law of the Sea”, Oxford International Organizations, Oxford University Press, 2021. (International law encyclopedia) Oxford Public International Law: Rules of Procedure for Meetings of State Parties to the UN Law of the Sea Convention, 24th January 2005 (UN Doc SPLOS/2/Rev.4), OXIO 622
“Liberal or Constrained? Judicial Incorporations of Other Rules of International Law in the UNCLOS and the Application of the ‘Genuine Link Test’”, Journal of East Asia and International Law Vol. 13(1), 2020, 161-178. (Scopus-listed) http://journal.yiil.org/home/pdf/publications/2020_13_1_pdf/jeail_v13n1_08.pdf
“Coordinating Body on the Seas of East Asia”, Oxford International Organizations, Oxford University Press, 2020. (International law encyclopedia) Oxford International Organizations: Action Plan for the Protection and Sustainable Development of the Marine and Coastal Areas of the East Asian Region, 1st January 1994 (UNEP(OCA)/EAS IG5/6), OXIO 515 (ouplaw.com)
“The Chamber for Marine Environmental Disputes”, Oxford International Organizations, Oxford University Press, 2019. (International law encyclopedia) https://opil-ouplaw-com.ezproxy.is.ed.ac.uk/view/10.1093/law-oxio/e414.013.1/law-oxio-e414
“Reflections on the Judicial Development of Effective Control Test in the Context of UN Peace Operations”, in Liu Daqun, Suzannah Linton, Zhu Lijiang (eds), East-West Perspectives on International Law, A Selection of Papers from Conferences in Beijing and Hangzhou (2015-2017), China University of Political Science and Law Press, 2018, 423-453.
International Law Papers in Chinese:
“Implementation of the Revenue Sharing Mechanism Relating to the Continental Shelf Beyond 200 Nautical Miles”, in Chengyuan Ma (eds) “Collections of collaborative innovation on territorial sovereignty and maritime rights （volume 3）”, China University of Political Science and Law Press, 2017, 29-41.
“On the Identification and Characterization of the Disputes under UNCLOS Dispute Settlement Procedures”, in Chengyuan Ma (eds). “Collections of collaborative innovation on territorial sovereignty and maritime rights （volume 2）”, China University of Political Science and Law Press, 2016, 105-135.
“The Overview of the Work of ad hoc International Criminal Court in 2016”, (In Chinese), Co-authored with Jinyang Xu, Jiaqin Chen, “2016 Chinese Yearbook of International Law”, 611-636.
“On the Jurisdiction of Arbitral Tribunals under Annex VII of UNCLOS over ‘Mixed Dispute’ Concerning Sovereign Issues—Legal Analysis and Its Implications for Philippine v. China case” (in Chinese), Chinese Journal of Maritime Law Vol. 27(2), 2016, 3-15.
“Analysis on the Environmental Cooperation Mechanism in the Regime of Transit Passage” (in Chinese), CUPL Graduate Vol.2, 2015, 4-23.
The Oxford International Organizations, Oxford University Press
Headnote Rapporteur, June 2018- Current
The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, Hamburg, Germany
Full-Time, Internship Legal Assistant July 2021-October 2021
- Assisting senior legal officers of ITLOS in preparing Digest of Jurisprudence of ITLOS (1996-2021).
- Conducting legal research underpinning the prompt release procedure of ITLOS.
- Under the supervision of Dr. Louis Savadogo, I submit an academic research paper entitled “Annex VII Arbitral Tribunals as the Engine of Cross-fertilisation”.
The International Criminal Tribunal for the Formal Yugoslavia, Hague, Netherlands
Full-time, Internship Legal Assistant May 2017 – September 2017
- Drafting memorandums in preparation for Judge’s discussion on certain legal issues, concerning both procedural and substantial matters.
- Taking part into the panel for discussions in relation to the last case of ICTY, Prlic case.
- Organizing academic seminars among ICTY legal interns, discussing the recent legal issues.
The United Nations Headquarters, New York, USA
Full-time, Legal Reviser/Translator, July 2016 – Sep 2016
- Responsible for revising and updating legal terminology on Public International Law for the Sixth Committee of the General Assembly’s legal documents, and providing contributions to the “UN-Terms database”, the official UN terminology database
- Translated a voluminous number of legal documents for the General Assembly, International Law Commission and other UN organs from English to Chinese
- Created an English speech on “Legal Translation and Legal Interpretation,” which was well-received among senior UN translators
State Oceanic Administration of PRC, China Institute for Marine Affairs (CIMA), Beijing, China
Causal hours, Legal Researcher, March 2016 – January 2018
- Responsible for analyzing contemporaneous law of sea issues relating to China, assisting in the drafting of governmental documents and collecting primary resources relating to the recent South China Sea disputes
- Collected legal materials on the regime governing the use of force on the high seas, the EEZ, and freedom of navigation inter alia