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Dr Surabhi Ranganathan's picture

Email

sr496@cam.ac.uk

Faculty Contact Details

Room: 7, LCIL

Tel: 01223748772

University Senior Lecturer; Deputy Director of the Lauterpacht Centre for International Law

Interests

International law, oceans, global commons, treaties, history, knowledge production, political economy, legal geography, maps 

 

CV / Biography

Surabhi Ranganathan's current work traces the co-constitution of international law and the ocean from 1945 to now, unsettling what we take as the givens in relation to the spatial zones, resource allocations and functional jurisdictions effected by the law of the sea. It extends the history and critique of international law into new areas, such as ocean depths and bottoms, global commons, marine infrastructures, and techno-utopian imaginaries, and, from the underexplored vantage point of oceanic law-making, throws new light on current preoccupations of international legal histories: statehood and territory, decolonization and the new international economic order, the Cold War, race and empire, and the emergence of new legal forms and institutions.

Her writings on the oceans, the history and politics of international law, treaties, and global governance have been published in, among others, the European Journal of International Law, the British Yearbook of International Law, the American Journal of International Law and the Journal of the History of International Law. Ranganathan is also the author Strategically Created Treaty Conflicts and the Politics of International Law (Cambridge University Press), a study of international legal thought and practice, exploring treaty conflicts in nuclear governance, the law of the sea, and international criminal justice, which was an EJIL Editors' Choice for 2015. 

To know more about her research, you might read the interview, Garret Hardin, Arvid Pardo and the Fascinations of Interdisciplinarity (pp. 28-33); listen to Big Blue Juridical Planet on Fool's Utopia; hear the talk Unmaking the Ocean delivered at Oxford, or watch her Snyder Lecture: The Legal Construction of the Ocean at the University of Indiana. Short pieces include Techno-Utopia of the Deep on CUP's fifteeneightyfour blog; a sequence of short essays Interfaces of Land and Sea for Visualizing Climate and History; and Seasteads, Land-grabs and International Law. You might also enjoy this conversation on different approaches to international law between Professor Andrea Bianchi and her, hosted by the Max Planck Institute Luxembourg. To find out more about her monograph, please look up the roundtable on the book hosted by Volkerrechtsblog, or hear this recording

She was a Visiting Professor at the Graduate Institute, Geneva for spring 2020, and has been invited as a Global Professor at NYU School of Law. She will be a Visiting Fellow at the Center for History and Economics, Harvard in spring 2021. 

Educated at NLSIU Bangalore, NYU (as a Vanderbilt Scholar), and Cambridge (as a Gates Scholar, and JC Hall Scholar at St. John's College), Ranganathan has clerked for the Supreme Court of India, and interned with UNHCR, UNICEF, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, and the Central Empowered Committee for the Environment established by the Supreme Court of India. Her editorial roles include the Leiden Journal of International Law, the Cambridge Law Journal, and the Scientific Advisory Board of the European Journal of International Law. 

Publications

 

Books

Strategically Created Treaty Conflicts and the Politics of International Law (Cambridge University Press, 2015)

Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Published Jan 2015

Cambridge Companion to International Law (ed) (Cambridge University Press, 2012)

Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Published Jan 2012

Articles

"Decolonization and International Law: Putting the Ocean on the Map " (2021) 23(1) Journal of the History of International Law 161-183

Citation:
(2021) 23(1) Journal of the History of International Law 161-183
Published: Jun 2020

"Interfaces of Land and Sea: 7 essays on the Law of the Sea" Visualizing Climate and Loss, January 2020

Citation:
Visualizing Climate and Loss, January 2020
Published: Jan 2020

"We are Witnessing a Rediscovery of India's Republic " New York Times, 27 December 2019

Co-Author/s:
Rohit De
Citation:
New York Times, 27 December 2019
Published: Dec 2019

"Ocean Floor Grab: International Law and the Making of an Extractive Imaginary" (2019) 30:2 European Journal of International Law 573-600

Citation:
(2019) 30:2 European Journal of International Law 573-600
Published: Jun 2019

"International Law and Economic Exploitation in the Global Commons: Introduction" (2019) 30(2) European Journal of International Law 541-546

Co-Author/s:
Isabel Feichtner
Citation:
(2019) 30(2) European Journal of International Law 541-546
Published: Jun 2019

"Seasteads, Landgrabs and International Law: Editorial" " (2019) 32:2 Leiden Journal of International Law 1-10

Citation:
(2019) 32:2 Leiden Journal of International Law 1-10
Published: May 2019

"Nuclear Weapons and the Court" (2017) 111 American Journal of International Law Unbound 88-95

Citation:
(2017) 111 American Journal of International Law Unbound 88-95
Published: Jun 2017

"The 2015 Judicial Activity of the International Court of Justice" (2016) 110 American Journal of International Law 504-525

Citation:
(2016) 110 American Journal of International Law 504-525
Published: Oct 2016

"Global Commons" (2016) 27 European Journal of International Law 693-717

Citation:
(2016) 27 European Journal of International Law 693-717
Published: Sep 2016

"Between Philosophy and Anxiety? The Early International Law Commission, Treaty Conflict and the Project of International Law" (2012) 83 British Yearbook of International Law 82-114

Citation:
(2012) 83 British Yearbook of International Law 82-114
Published: Feb 2014

"The Value of Narratives: The India USA Nuclear Deal in terms of Fragmentation, Pluralism, Constitutionalization and Global Administrative Law" (2013) 6(1) Erasmus Law Review 16-31

Citation:
(2013) 6(1) Erasmus Law Review 16-31
Published: Jun 2013

"Visions of International Law: Lessons from the 123 Agreement" (2011) 51 Indian Journal of International Law 146-197

Citation:
(2011) 51 Indian Journal of International Law 146-197
Published: Jun 2011

"Between Complicity and Irrelevance-Industry Associations and the Challenge of Regulating Private Security Contractors" (2010) 41 Georgetown Journal of International Law 303-376

Citation:
(2010) 41 Georgetown Journal of International Law 303-376
Published: Mar 2010

"Reconceptualizing the Boundaries of Humanitarian Assistance: What's in a Name or the Importance of Being Earnest" 40(1) John Marshall Law Review 195-233

Citation:
40(1) John Marshall Law Review 195-233
Published: Dec 2006

Book Chapters

"What if Arvid Pardo had not made his famous speech? : (False) Contingency in the Making of the Law of the Sea" in Kevin Jon Heller and Ingo Venzke (ed(s)), Contingency in International Law: On the Possibility of Different Legal Histories (Oxford University Press , 2021)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
Published Apr 2021

"The Common Heritage of Mankind: Annotations on a Battle" in Jochen von Bernstorff and Philipp Dann (ed(s)), The Battle for International Law: South-North Perspectives on the Decolonization Era (Oxford University Press, 2019)

"Manganese Nodules " (with Jessie Hohmann & Daniel Joyce ) in Jessie Hohmann and Daniel Joyce (ed(s)), International Law's Objects (Oxford University Press, 2018)

"The Law of the Sea and Natural Resources" in Eyal Benvenisti and Georg Nolte (ed(s)), Community Interests Across International Law (Oxford University Press , 2018), pp. 121-135

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
Pages:
121-135
Published May 2018

"The Nuclear Weapons Advisory Opinions (1996)" (with Eirik Bjorge and Cameron Miles), Landmark Cases in Public International Law (Hart, 2017)

Publisher:
Hart
Co-Author/s:
Eirik Bjorge and Cameron Miles
Published Dec 2017

"Industry Associations and the Regulation of Private Military and Security Companies" in Gary Schaub Jr. and Ryan Kelty (ed(s)), Private Military and Security Contractors: Controlling the Corporate Warrior (Rowman Littlefield, 2016), pp. 165-200

Publisher:
Rowman Littlefield
Pages:
165-200
Published Aug 2016

"Legality and Lawfare in Regime Implementation" in Nikolas M. Rajkovic, Tanja Aalberts and Thomas Gammeltoft-Hansen (ed(s)), The Power of Legality: Practices of International Law and Their Politics (Cambridge University Press, 2015)

Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Published Dec 2015

"Responding to Deliberately-created Treaty Conflicts" in C Tams, A Tzanakopoulos and A Zimmerman (ed(s)), Research Handbook on the Law of Treaties (Edward Elgar, 2014)

Publisher:
Edward Elgar
Published Jun 2014

"Constructive Constraints? Conceptual and Practical Challenges to Regulating Private Military and Security Companies" in C Ryngaert and M Noorthman (ed(s)), Human security and international law: the challenge of non-state actors (Intersentia, 2013)

Publisher:
Intersentia
Published Dec 2013

Book Reviews

Romancing the State: Review of 'Irreconcilable Norm Conflicts' by Valentin Jeutner Völkerrechtsblog, 26 June 2019

DOI:
https://doi.org/10.17176/20190708-135010-0
Published Jul 2019

The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights: Travaux Préparatoires 1948–1966. Edited by Ben Saul. (2018) 77(2) CLJ 411-414

Interpreting the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. By Daniel Joyner 2011 (82) BYIL 532

Published Nov 2013

Case Notes

Jadhav case (India v Pakistan), Order on Provisional Measures (ICJ, 18 May 2017) (2018) 57 International Legal Materials 1-3

The Torture Exception to Immunity from Civil Suit: Jones and others v UK (2014) 59 EHRR 1 (2015) 74(1) CLJ 16-19

Published: Apr 2015