Universiteit Leiden

nl en


Governance and Dispute Settlement in the Ireland/Northern Ireland Protocol

In this working paper, Dr. Joris Larik provides an analysis of the governance and dispute settlement mechanisms under the Ireland/Northern Ireland Protocol.

Joris Larik
15 November 2021
Governance and Dispute Settlement in the Ireland/Northern Ireland Protocol


The Protocol on Ireland/Northern has the questionable honour of having its dispute settlement mechanisms being activated first under the new post-Brexit agreements between the EU and UK. This chapter highlights the two main hallmarks of the Protocol: on the one hand, being an integral part of the Withdrawal Agreement and the post-Brexit legal framework more broadly, and, on the other, being one of the last and most enduring holdouts of EU institutions applying EU law in a part of the UK. These characteristics, coupled with the high political stakes in the context of North-South relations in Ireland and the peace process, merit close scrutiny of the Protocol’s governance and dispute settlement provisions. Based on an analysis of the relevant provisions and informed by leading theories on compliance in international law, this chapter argues that due to fundamentally different views and strategies of the EU institutions and the UK government, the design and use of the Protocol’s mechanisms have the potential to exacerbate rather than mend EU-UK relations.

Read the working paper here

This website uses cookies.  More information.