The Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) is an intergovernmental organization with 122 member states. It was established in 1899 to facilitate arbitration and other forms of dispute resolution between states. Since 1913 the seat of the PCA is the Peace Palace in The Hague. The PCA has now developed into a modern, multi-faceted arbitral institution that is perfectly situated at the juncture between public and private international law. Thus it is able to meet the rapidly evolving dispute resolution needs of the international community.

Today the PCA provides multiple services for the resolution of disputes involving various combinations of states, state entities, intergovernmental organizations, and private parties. The PCA's Secretariat, the International Bureau, headed by its Secretary-General, provides administrative support to tribunals and commissions. Its caseload reflects the breadth of PCA involvement in international dispute resolution, encompassing territorial, treaty, and human rights disputes between states. It also deals with commercial and investment disputes, including disputes arising under bilateral and multilateral investment treaties. The PCA can assist in the selection of arbitrators, and may be called upon to designate or act as appointing authority. The PCA is also a center for scholarship and publication, and a forum for legal discourse.

This Research Guide is intended as a starting point for research on the Permanent Court of Arbitration. It provides the basic legal materials available in the Peace Palace Library, both in print and electronic format. Handbooks, leading articles, bibliographies, periodicals, serial publications and documents of interest are presented in the Selective Bibliography section. Links to the PPL Catalogue are inserted. The Library's subject heading (keyword) Permanent Court of Arbitration is instrumental for searching through the Catalogue. Special attention is given to our subscriptions on databases, e-journals, e-books and other electronic resources. Finally, this Research Guide features links to relevant websites and other online resources of particular interest.


Sources of international law



Soft law

Reference works

Selected books and articles

Periodicals, serial publications