International and Comparative Labor and Employment Law

In today's global economy, world business leaders require advice regarding non-U.S. law, including the labor and employment laws that regulate their work forces. Moreover, and for similar reasons, labor advocates increasingly seek to hold countries accountable for failing to live up to international labor standards promulgated by the International Labor Organization (ILO) and other international bodies. They also try to hold lead firms that manage global value chains accountable to workers based on public and private sources of law, including corporate codes of conduct. Reformers also look at the labor and employment laws of other countries when they try to improve their national systems. International and comparative labor and employment law is therefore more than an academic curiosity. It is an important aspect of law practice and policy-making. In light of these considerations, this course surveys labor and employment laws and norms developed and promulgated by the ILO, the European Union, free trade agreements, and corporate codes. Comparatively, the course also focuses on the laws of the United States, Germany, and China, three leading world economies with vastly different labor and employment law systems. While the course does not aim to make students "experts" in any one jurisdiction, it teaches students to make informed questions, including to local counsel, when they encounter cross-border, employment-related legal issues. The course will also guide students to understand why countries have different systems of labor and employment protection despite the fact that they all try to solve similar problems, and how the U.S. is, or is not, unique.
(added 11/08; revised 3/17)

Course Information
Course #: LAW 632
Program: JD
Course Type: JD Seminar
Area of Study: International and Comparative Law, Labor and Employment Law
Credit Hours: Two credit hours.