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The Jessup Moot Court

Founded in 1959 by students from Harvard Law School, the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition is the world's largest, oldest and most prestigious competition of its kind.

Peace Palace, Grand HallFounded in 1959 by students from Harvard Law School, the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition is the world's largest, oldest and most prestigious competition of its kind. Every year, thousands of law students from over 700 law schools in more than 100 countries participate in this moot. The competition simulates a fictional dispute between two States in front of the International Court of Justice, which is the judicial organ of the United Nations. Teams prepare oral pleadings and written memorials arguing both the Applicant's and Respondent's positions of the case.

The Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition concentrates on classic, current and upcoming problems of public international law. This season the problem addresses multi-fora international litigation, the accountability of heads of State for war crime, killer robots and a wall.

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What is a Moot Court?

A moot court is a simulated court proceeding. Law students prepare written memorials and oral pleadings to present their arguments before a jury, which is usually composed of judges and lawyers with expertise in the subject matter of the case. The winner is not necessarily the Counsel who is on solid grounds with the merits of the case. Instead, legal expertise, debating skills and formulating convincing arguments are what matter most: "When the facts are on your side, pound the facts. When the law is on your side, pound the law. If you are weak on both, pound the table".

Further Information:

International Law Students Association
White & Case Jessup
If you have any questions, please contact us at jessup@jura.uni-freiburg.de