Investor-State Law Guide

Understanding the Research Tools

Use this to familiarize yourself with the brand new and updated core features of ISLG to help you maximize your research. Knowing which tool can help you with what will enable you to get the full power of ISLG and reduce your time spent searching for information.

Overview of ISLG

Investor-State LawGuide (ISLG) is powerful legal research software that enables subject matter expertise to help you find results accurately and efficiently. Through the use of our distinct research tools, our experts map relationships between investment treaty decisions and awards and link them to applicable treaties and instruments. This enables you as the user to easily find connections between jurisprudence and even share these results with your peers.

Subject Navigator

The Subject Navigator is one of our most powerful tools, as it enables you to research complex subjects by isolating relevant issues and digging deeper into the Subject Navigator tree. Within the structure of the Subject Navigator, you will be able to view start by finding higher-level subject areas that are relevant to your research. As you dive deeper into the sub-sections of these subjects, you will be able to focus on the sub-areas that are most relevant to your research. ISLG prides itself on the ability to pull out the nuances of a subject/topic, and because of this there are sections within this tool called “cross-references”. These will allow you to view a topic within different contexts, as one subject could have various interpretations depending on the larger context. 

The Subject Navigator is best used if you are wanting to start your research by looking at the broader topic or subject matter, and through there, understanding what decision and award documents are related to that subject matter.

Read “Getting started with the Subject Navigator” for more information on how to use this tool

Article Citator

The Article Citator allows you to see a list of legal instruments (Treaties and Arbitration Rules) to see how these have been interpreted by tribunals. It will allow you to sort these cited instruments by the most commonly cited provisions and allow you to jump directly to the paragraph/footnote in the decision and award document that references the provision. 

The Article Citator is best used if you are wanting to start your research by looking at the legal instrument and specific provisions within it, and through there, understanding how it has been applied by tribunals in decision and award documents.

Read “Getting started with the Article Citator” for more information on how to use this tool

Jurisprudence Citator

The Jurisprudence Citator enables you to instantly see how specific decisions have been treated by subsequent investment treaty tribunals. This includes both investment and non-investment treaty decisions (e.g., International Court of Justice judgments). Through the Jurisprudence Citator, you will be able to view decisions made by tribunals as they reference previous cases in general or a specific passage of prior cases. Through here you will be able to isolate relevant passages and toggle between related decisions and awards to cross-reference your findings.

The Jurisprudence Citator is best used if you are wanting to start your research by looking at the specific dispute documents, and through there, understanding how those have been referred to in subsequent decision and award documents.

Read “Getting started with the Jurisprudence Citator” for more information on how to use this tool

Publication Citator

The Publication Citator allows you to track the history and use of trusted secondary resources. It will allow you to gain insight into how authoritative materials have been utilized and considered by tribunals. The tool will allow you to see which paragraph/footnote of a decision or award has referenced the secondary source material, and even specifically on which page/chapter/section/paragraph of that secondary source material. 

The Publication Citator is best used if you are wanting to start your research by looking at the secondary resource material (books, dictionary/news/periodicals etc),  and through there, understanding which decision and award documents are related to that publication.

Read “Getting started with the Publication Citator” for more information on how to use this tool

Terms and Phrases

The Terms and Phrases tool will allow you to see exactly how specific terms or phrases have been defined in the context of previous investment arbitration tribunals. If you would like to dive deeper into a term or phrase, some are related to subjects in the Subject Navigator to view more information on related subjects. 

The Terms and Phrases tool is best used if you are wanting to start your research by looking at the terms/phrases, and through there, see how they have been defined by legal instruments and related tribunal decisions.

Read “Getting started with the Terms and Phrases tool” for more information on how to use this tool

ISLG Reports

ISLG Reports is a brand new feature that maximizes the power of ISLG’s database and allows you to generate reports on any point of interest to synthesize and gain relevant insights. Through ISLG Reports the reports are organized into four main categories – dispute, people, organizations and countries. This will allow researchers to select a person, country organization or dispute they would like to view certain reports by and filter down the data to see what is most relevant. 

ISLG Reports are generated by our team of experienced subject matter experts, who build reports that you will find available in the application. The reports feature is created in such a way, that allows users to view detailed data in two main ways – Individual Reports (allows you to view data on a specific person/organization/country/dispute in addition to data that is relevant to that entity) and Comparative Reports (allows you to compare all entries in ISLG of the same type across certain parameters). 

The ISLG Reports tool is best used if you would like to see patterns or data synthesized in such a way that will help you gain relevant insights related to cases, people, organizations or disputes. Often you may want to start with a specific point of interest or question (For example: which roles did a certain person perform in and what was the outcome of those cases?) and then select the report category that is relevant to your question (in this case ‘people’) and select a report that is relevant to you from there. 

Read “Getting started with ISLG Reports” for more information on how to use this tool

Full Text Search

The Full Text Search tool will enable you to run a comprehensive keyword search across all documents in the ISLG collection, including decisions, awards, procedural orders, pleadings, arbitration rules, treaties and other legal instruments. The Full Text Search Tool is an efficient way to view where keywords appear in any of the documents in the ISLG collection. A variety of filters and parameters can be applied to refine your search.

The Full Text Search tool is best used if you have specific criteria you would like to search by that encompasses elements from various research tools. For example, if you would like to see all documents that are applicable to a certain subject branch (visible in the Subject Navigator) and that make reference to a specific provision (visible in the Article Citator) you could do this through the Full Text Search tool.

Read “Getting started with Full Text Search” for more information on how to use this tool

Related Resources

Using Actions Menus

Use this to understand the purpose of the actions menu in the New version of ISLG, and how to use them to complete a variety of tasks in the application.

Accessing a different version of the application

Use this guide to understand how to navigate between the two versions of the application to ensure you have the optimal experience while using ISLG. Note that this article is only applicable to users of the application from before April 2021. Any newer users to the application will only have access to the New version of ISLG.

Changing the views (Card view vs. compact view)