Improving Compliance with International Law; Managing the Risks of International Agreement

In This Review

Improving Compliance with International Law

By Roger Fisher
University Press of Virginia, 1981
370 pp. $20.00

Managing the Risks of International Agreement

By Richard B. Bilder
University of Wisconsin Press, 1981
302 pp. $22.50

Roger Fisher has been a pioneer in the field of negotiation and crisis management. Here he applies his techniques to the subject of compliance with international law, taking the emphasis off sanctions and coercion and putting it on what may be practical and possible in the light of the known patterns of the behavior of governments. An innovator and optimist, he looks ahead a decade or so to describe and define processes and legal arrangements that may or may not work. Bilder's approach and arguments are in some ways comparable to Fisher's. He lists and analyzes ways in which the risks of non-compliance may be minimized; if the lessons are well learned, it should be easier for diplomats to conclude treaties and reach agreements in the first place. Having served in the State Department, Bilder is able to draw on recent cases and negotiations to illustrate his points.

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