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Pritzker Legal Research Center

International Legal Research Guide

An overview of international law and where to begin research


This guide is intended to assist you with conducting research on an international law topic. Public international law governs relationships between nations and intergovernmental organizations, while private international law governs disputes between private individuals or companies/corporations that cross international boundaries where there is a conflict in the domestic law of different countries. 

In contrast, foreign law pertains to the law of another nation (e.g., the law of Switzerland, the law of Australia, etc.). For assistance with foreign legal research projects, please see our Foreign Legal Research Guide

General International Legal Research Resources

These books provide general background information on conducting international legal research. These resources can serve as more detailed supplements to this research guide. 

This research guide was last updated and revised on 8/30/19.