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Making and Justifying Territorial Claims

May 16 and 17, 2014

A massive empirical literature explores how territorial claims affect states’ international relations as well as the organization of their internal politics. However, only recently has this research begun to theorize the basis of territorial claims and the related question of why a state makes one particular claim over an infinite set of alternative possible claims. What gives the state a right to certain geographical boundaries, and how far do the state’s territorial claims extend? The purpose of the conference is to bring together empirically-oriented theorists, normative theorists, and experts on international law who research territoriality and claims to territory. Understanding the basis for territorial claims and how they are and might be justified is an increasingly important topic for both positive and normative theorists. At the same time, international law is known to play a significant role in the character of contemporary territorial claims. The goal of this conference is to advance the agenda on this topic by taking an interdisciplinary approach and connecting scholars with diverse methodologies and perspectives who can learn from one another’s work. 

Directors: David Carter, Assistant Professor of Politics,  and Anna Stilz, Associate Professor of Politics

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Friday, May 16

8:30 am Introductions and Coffee

9-10:15 am 
“Territorially-Related Cultural Rights: Patten’s Neutrality-Based Domestic Recognition or Identity-Based Global Distribution?”
Chaim Gans, Tel Aviv University
Discussant: Alan Patten, Princeton University


10:30-11:45 am
“When are Disputes Territorial?”
Avery Kolers, University of Louisville,
Discussant: David Lefkowitz, University of Richmond

Lunch 12-1:30 pm

1:45-3 pm
"Hegemony and Rights to Land: Testing a Rule in the Case of Israel/Palestine."
Ian Lustick, University of Pennsylvania,
Discussant: Amaney Jamal, Princeton University

3:15-4:30 pm
 “Selecting adjudication: International courts, Territorial and Maritime Claims, and the Management of Peaceful and Hostile Relationships" 
Paul Diehl, University of Illinois; Gary Goertz , University of Notre Dame
Discussant: Paul Huth, University of Maryland

4:45-6 pm
Refreshments followed by invitation-only dinner

Saturday, May 17

9-10:15 am
“Contiguity, Compactness, and Territorial Claims: Empirical and Normative Considerations”
Jordan Branch, Brown University
Discussant: David Carter, Princeton University

10:30-11:45 am
“Aims, Claims, and the Bargaining Model”
Ken Schultz, Stanford University; Hein Goemans, University of Rochester
Discussant: Jack Snyder, Columbia University

Lunch 12-1:30 pm

1:45-3 pm 
“Occupancy Rights and the Right of Return”
Kit Wellman, Washington University in Saint Louis
Discussant: Simon Cotton, Princeton University

3:15-4:30 pm
 “Territorial Rights, Border Control, and Fences”
Paulina Ochoa, Yale University
Discussant: Bas van der Vossen, University of North Carolina, Greensboro

Concluding Reception


Uriel Abulof, Tel Aviv University

Jordan Branch, Brown University

Simon Cotton, Princeton University

Paul Diehl, University of Illinois

Chaim Gans, Tel Aviv University

Hein Goemans, University of Rochester

Paul Huth, University of Maryland

Avery Kolers, University of Louisville

David Lefkowitz, University of Richmond

Ian Lustick, University of Pennsylvania

Paulina Ochoa, Yale University

Alan Patten, Princeton University

Ken Schultz, Stanford University

Helder de Schutter, KU-Leuven/Princeton University

Jack Snyder, Columbia University

Bas van der Vossen, University of North Carolina,  Greensboro

Kit  Wellman, Washington University in St. Louis

MAY 16-17, 2014

Conference poster

"Making and Justifying Territorial Claims "
216 Aaron Burr Hall

View Papers with your PU Credentials

Contact Anna Stilz to view papers without PU Credentials