Sheffield Workshop, 28-29 May 2009

Regulatory Frameworks for Private Military and Security Companies: Problems and Prospects

28 May 2009, Sheffield University, 0900- 1715

Workshop Programme

The aim of the Sheffield workshop is to consider the problems and prospects of regulation of PMSCs at national, regional and international levels. While at the international level we can identify a number of different legal regimes that are applicable to the activities of PMSCs, there is little by way of actual regulation of these activities. But international law is not only about the setting of standards. Regulatory regimes have been developed for instance in the area of arms control, from which lessons may be learned. While national regulation is present in a number of countries, the extent of procedural and substantive diversity causes problems and concern in what is a global market place, which a greater reference to international standards or bodies might remedy. However, as international law is generally weak in implementation and enforcement even in those areas where it has developed a regulatory regime, attention is drawn to Europe as a more effective source of legal regulation, an issue that will be developed further during the Utrecht workshop in 2010. The Sheffield workshop will start to look at the question of whether Europe can provide an answer in the context of the weaknesses of national laws, revealed during the Florence workshop in March 2009.