The need for an international legal concept of fair and equitable benefit-sharing

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Citations (Scopus)
226 Downloads (Pure)


This article proposes a concept of 'fair and equitable benefit sharing' deriving from international biodiversity law, international human rights law, and the law of the sea. The concept identifies normative elements that are shared among the international treaties that refer to benefit sharing, comprising the act of sharing; the nature of the benefits to be shared; the activities from which benefit sharing arise; the beneficiaries; and fairness and equity as the rationale for benefit sharing in international law. The concept is not intended to provide a holistic or exhaustive notion of fair and equitable benefit sharing but, rather, to support comparison and generalization with a view to shifting the current investigation from sectoral/technical approaches to the perspective of general international law and the contribution to research in other areas of international law. The proposed conceptualization is thus geared towards the development of a research agenda targeting a variety of international and transnational legal materials, allowing for the appreciation of differences in the context of varying logics of different areas of law.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)353-383
Number of pages31
JournalEuropean Journal of International Law
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 31 May 2016


  • benefit-sharing
  • environmental law
  • natural resources
  • international law
  • differentiated responsibility


Dive into the research topics of 'The need for an international legal concept of fair and equitable benefit-sharing'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this