Transnational litigation networks, that is, the cross-border collaboration of interest groups in advancing a cause in international dispute settlement mechanisms, dates back to the interwar era of international law. The so-called optants cases, a set of international disputes in the interwar period opposed individuals who changed their nationality under the Versailles peace treaties and governments that expropriated the land properties of the latter without due compensation. These litigations involved not only individual claimants backed by their state of nationality and the successor states imposing the land reform, but a series of civil society actors and states that had economic interests at stake in or against land reforms. Without the transnational collaboration of numerous actors of common interest, individual rights could not have been effectively protected. The comparative research of the optants cases in the interwar period enlightens the origin and preconditions of the modern-day transnational litigation networks.
Image: “A magyar-román birtokpör tárgyalása”, Magyarság Képes Melléklete, 6 October 1927, no. 22, p. 7.