LAWS 7025 International Law of Ocean Governance

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 200951

Coordinator Daud Sm Hassan Opens in new window

Description This subject examines the rules regulating the principle uses of the world's oceans. It explores the historical development and sources of contemporary law of the sea and the adoption of the 1982 Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). Legal regimes of various maritime zones including territorial sea and contiguous zone, continental shelf, the exclusive economic zone and the high seas will be studied. Various sources of marine pollution, fisheries, marine scientific research, maritime spatial planning, maritime safety and security, mining of deep sea beds and dispute settlement will also be explored in this subject.

School Law

Discipline International Law

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 4 10cp

Check your fees via the Fees page.

Level Postgraduate Coursework Level 7 subject


Students must be enrolled in 2824 Master of Laws, 2784 or 2810 Master of Laws (International Governance), 8083 Bachelor of Research Studies, 8084 Master of Research - HC or 8085 Master of Research - LC.

Assumed Knowledge

Knowledge of law as contained in a law degree (Bachelor of Laws or Juris Doctor) or equivalent in any jurisdiction, including specific knowledge of Contracts Law, Corporations Law, Commercial Law and Property Law.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  1. Demonstrate mastery of theoretical knowledge of the relevant international law and policy affecting the oceans and to reflect critically on theory and professional practice.
  2. Demonstrate an advanced and integrated understanding of various maritime zones in terms of oceans governance and the present status of the law of the sea.
  3. Evaluate complex ideas and concepts at an abstract level to apply knowledge and understanding in making an assessment of where the law of the sea can be expected to develop in the future.
  4. Integrate theoretical and practical knowledge to critically analyse practical fact situations, locate and apply the relevant legal norms to them.

Subject Content

1. The evolution of Oceanic Law.
2. Importance of Sustainable Ocean Governance.
3. Baselines and Regimes of Internal Waters.
4. The Territorial Sea and Contiguous Zone.
5. Special Passage Regimes: International Straits and Archipelagos.
6. The Exclusive Economic Zone and High Seas.
7. The Continental Shelf: Principles of Maritime Delimitation.
8. Marine Pollution.
9. Fisheries.
10. Marine Scientific Research.
11. Maritime Spatial Planning System.
12. Maritime Safety and Security.
13. Mining of Deep Sea Beds and Common Heritage of Mankind.
14. Dispute Settlement.


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Type Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Presentation 20 minutes 20 N Individual
Essay 5,000 words 80 N Individual

Prescribed Texts

  • Donald R Rothwell and Tim Stephens, The International Law of the Sea (Hart Publishing, 2nd ed, 2016)