SWF Team Authors 2017 Space Law Moot Court Problem

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Can two countries with a long history of peaceful relations avoid hostilities when their values and operations clash on the surface of the Moon?

This is a key question posed in this year's Manfred Lachs Space Law Moot Court problem authored by SWF Executive Director Dr. Michael Simpson and Space Law Advisor Christopher Johnson, Esq.

This problem has challenged teams from around the world since the beginning of the Regional Competitions last March, and the final round was argued in Adelaide, Australia before two sitting judges and one retired judge of the International Court of Justice on September 28 during the International Astronautical Congress.

The problem presented several issues that had never appeared in previous Space Law Moot Court Cases: it provided a scenario in which one of the parties to the case had withdrawn from the Outer Space Treaty, it explored the possibility of resolving one element of the problem ex aequo et bono, and it involved a space mineral resources element that evoked ongoing discussion about commercial mining in space.

The World Finals of the Moot Court Competition pitted a team from the University of Mississippi coached by by former SWF intern, Andrea Harrington against a team from the National Law School of India. After over an hour of skilled arguments from the contestants, the judges awarded first place honors to the Indian team.

Press Release from the International Institute of Space Law


Last updated on October 18, 2017