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Personal profile

Research interests

Nicola's research interests lie primarily in international law and international trade law and governance, particuarly international courts and dispute settlement mechanisms. The intersections between international trade law and governance on the one hand and social justice objectives on the other is of especial interest. Her doctoral research investigated how civil society groups might contribute to the development of WTO law and governance through their participation in its Dispute Settlement Body. She also enjoys inter-disciplinary work with history and has recently published in the Australian Journal of Politics and History.

She is currently working on projects that

  • investigate the influence of the GATT on the Australian Tariff Board and the emergence of economic expertise in tariff decision-making in the 1950s
  • explore the value of inter-disciplinary approaches to law, drawing on history
  • a comparative geneology of the amicus curiae across UK - US - Canada to explore their contribution to democratic and transparent governance principles
  • explore the potential contribution of amicus curiae beyond influencing court decisions in international dispute settlement, including investor-state arbitration.

Supervision interests

International and regional law and governance, especially with a focus on trade, civil society and social justice.

Nicola is especially interested in topics that

  • examine the relationship between international and regional trade law and expert knowlege and the role of non-state actors
  • employ a historical approach to international or regional trade law or its intersections 
  • examine the role of regional and bilateral trade agreements to the global regulation of trade, especially
  • their role in international standard setting and international law-making, for example, creating new norms and practices around special and differential treatment or rules that impact access to medicines
  • explorations of how these agreements are formed and negotiated and the impact of their formation and negotiation on their content and effectiveness
  • their potential in creating standards and rules that promote environmental and human rights protection, in particular the value of environmental and human rights impact assessments

Monash teaching commitment

Units taught 2017

BTF5340 Regional trade governance


Units previously taught:

BTF5919 International trade law

BTX3110 International trade law

MGF570 International institutions and organisations

BTF5130 International law and policy

BTC3100 Sustainability and the law

BTF3100 Environmental law for business

BTF1010 Business Law


  • International trade law
  • international trade governance
  • social justice
  • civil society
  • history

Research Output 2014 2016

Who participates as amicus curiae in World Trade Organisation dispute settlement and why?

Charwat, N., Dec 2016, In : New Zealand Universities Law Review. 27, 2, p. 337-364 28 p., 6.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Ideology and the economy: Capital issues controls, inflation and the Menzies government, 1950-51

Boyd, J. & Charwat, N., 2014, In : Australian Journal of Politics and History. 60, 4, p. 503 - 517 15 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Activities 2008 2017

  • 4 Contribution to conference
  • 2 Contribution to workshop, seminar, course
  • 1 Public outreach

The First Eric Richards Symposium in British and Australian History

Nicola Charwat (Speaker)
3 Feb 2017

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesContribution to conference

Amicus Curiae Briefs in WTO Disputes: An Opportunity for Participation (2016) A TradeLab Law Guide

Nicola Charwat (Contributor)
14 Jul 2016

Activity: Community Talks, Presentations, Exhibitions and EventsPublic outreach

Asia Pacific Economic and Business History Conference

Nicola Charwat (Speaker)
11 Feb 2016

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesContribution to conference

Workplace and Corporate Law Research Group Workshop, Department of Business Law and Taxation, Monash Business School

Nicola Charwat (Speaker)
16 Feb 2015

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesContribution to workshop, seminar, course

Australian and New Zealand Society for International Law

Nicola Charwat (Organiser)
4 Jul 20127 Jul 2012

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesContribution to conference