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Faculty Profile: Professor Craig Martin

Sabbatical lets Martin further explore international law, law of armed conflict, climate change

Craig Martin at International Court of Justice in the Netherlands

Professor Craig Martin at the International Court of Justice in the Netherlands

From the School of Law Alumni Newsletter - Fall 2019

Professor Craig Martin returned from a yearlong sabbatical this semester, during which he engaged in research, writing, and presenting work concerning his primary areas of scholarly interest and academic writing – international law with an emphasis on the use of force and the law of armed conflict, and comparative constitutional law.

During the fall 2018 semester, Martin was a Global Order Visiting Scholar at Perry World House, an inter-disciplinary institute for the study of global affairs at the University of Pennsylvania.

“This was something of a homecoming for me, as I did my doctorate in law at the University of Pennsylvania Law School,” Martin said. “While there last year, I was working on an article on the ‘unwilling or unable doctrine,’ which has been used by some countries to justify the use of force against armed groups within other states without the consent of those states.”

Martin’s article, "Challenging and Refining the 'Unwilling or Unable' Doctrine," was published this year in the Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law.

Martin then traveled to the Netherlands, where he was a Visiting Fellow at the Amsterdam Center for International Law at the University of Amsterdam during spring 2019. During his time there, he presented his article on the ‘unwilling or unable doctrine’ at the Asser Institute in The Hague. But the primary focus of his research in the Netherlands was international climate change law, and how it might interact with the laws of war.

“I also began work on a new project about the relationship between climate change and the jus ad bellum, which is the legal regime that governs the use of military force,” Martin said. “I presented early stages of that project at workshops convened by the Law of Armed Conflict and Military Operations network, and by ACIL.”

The first stage of that project, a law review article titled "Atmospheric Intervention: Climate Change and the Jus ad Bellum Regime," will be published early next year in the Columbia Journal of Environmental Law.

While in the Netherlands, Martin was able to visit Washburn colleague, Professor Janet Jackson, who was visiting the University of Groningen in the Netherlands, where she taught for a year and also taught her Washburn Law Clinic transactional course remotely (read more about her experiences teaching abroad and helping to develop distance education courses for Washburn Law). Martin also visited with colleagues at Leiden University and Utrecht University, as well as the International Criminal Court and the International Court of Justice. He also met with an alumna of Washburn's exchange program with Maastricht University, Joske Graat, who is about to complete her Ph.D. in international criminal law at Utrecht University.

In summing up his experience, Martin said, “Sabbaticals are meant to provide faculty with the time and space to delve much more deeply into their research and writing, and ideally to expand their scholarly networks. I certainly feel that my time at both the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Amsterdam allowed me to do both — and particularly gave me the opportunity to begin studying the legal aspects of climate change, which is the greatest existential threat faced by mankind.”

Martin earned his juris doctor at the University of Toronto, an LL.M. from Osaka University Graduate School of Law and Politics in Japan, and an S.J.D. from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. He obtained his bachelor of arts from the Royal Military College of Canada, after which he served as a naval officer in the Canadian Navy, during which time he served as a naval attaché in the Canadian Mission to the United Nations in New York. He grew up in St. Lucia, West Indies.

Professor Craig Martin’s Biography | Personal Website

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