The University of Western Australia

UWA Staff Profile

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Dominic Dagbanja

Dr Dominic Dagbanja

Lecturer
UWA Law School

Contact details
Address
UWA Law School
The University of Western Australia (M253)
35 Stirling Highway
CRAWLEY WA 6009
Australia
Phone
+61 8 6488 5086
Email
dominic.dagbanja@uwa.edu.au
Qualifications
BA(Hons) LLB(Hons) Ghana, BL Ghana LawSch, LLM Pacific, LLM G.Wash., PhD Auck.
Biography
Dr Dominic Dagbanja joined the School of Law in August 2016. He has been a Research Associate at The University of Manchester School of Law in the United Kingdom working on the European Research Council grant’s research on the Sociology of Transnational Constitutional Law; Lecturer in Law at Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration in Accra, Ghana; and Graduate Teaching Assistant at The University of Auckland Law School in New Zealand. He previously worked and practised law at Bentsil-Enchill, Letsa & Ankomah, Ministry of Justice & Attorney-General’s Department and Public Procurement Authority in Ghana. He was a Legal Assistant in the law firm of Gustavo Matheus, Esq. LLC in Maryland, Research Assistant at American Bar Association Section of Public Contract Law and Senior Intern at International Law Institute in Washington DC. His first teaching appointment was in 2001 at University of Ghana where he did his National Service as a Teaching Assistant in the Department of Sociology. There he handled tutorial classes in Theories of Social Development and the Context of Development and Underdevelopment for final year students
Key research
Dr Dagbanja researches into International Investment Law and Arbitration, Public Procurement Law, International Trade Law, International Business Transactions and Commercial Law, Company Law and Contract Law. His particular interests are in the implications of treaty-based investment and trade regimes for public interest regulatory autonomy and the role of national constitutions and general international law in the execution, interpretation and enforcement of these legal regimes. More specifically, His research explores the implications of the investment treaty regime for domestic regulatory autonomy in the areas of human rights and environmental protection and the development policymaking and implementation. Dominic seeks to theorise around the subject of the limitations that the primary right and duty of states to regulate in the public interest (to protect environment and human rights and, initiate and implement development policies) must or should place on the competence of states to conclude investment treaties the terms of which tend to restrict such public interest regulation.
Dr Dagbanja's PhD thesis, The Investment Treaty Regime and Public Interest Regulation in Ghana: Perspectives in Constitutionalism and General International Law, explored the role of national constitutions in the execution and interpretation of international investment treaties. International investment treaties have posed a challenge to the autonomy of states to regulate in the public interest in ways states did not anticipate when they signed them. This is evidenced by public interest regulatory measures that foreign investors have challenged in investor-state arbitration based on these treaties. Many of the measures that are the subject of investor-state suits are of the kind required by national constitutions, international environmental treaties and international human rights treaties states are parties to. Mainstream scholarship critical of the scope and effect of investment treaties has taken the legal status of these investment treaties for granted. Yet, this issue is of fundamental importance for at least two reasons. First, the case for states’ regulatory autonomy arises out of their primary duty to regulate in the public interest. This duty has its legal justification in national constitutions and international law. Second, treaty obligations are founded on the existence of legal norms necessary for the treaty to come into existence and which define the juridical consequences attached to the conclusion of the treaty. These matters are also determined by national constitutions and international law. To fill this lacuna in international investment law literature, Dominic’s thesis explored the investment treaty terms Ghana can or cannot agree to in light of its constitutional and general international law obligations on environmental protection, development policy and judicial independence. The thesis developed The Imperatives Theory by which it argues that the legal source and public purpose of the powers of the State of Ghana under the Constitution and general international law limits its competence to conclude agreements that directly prohibit public interest regulation or indirectly achieve that effect. The thesis provides a legal and normative basis for reflection on the limits to the capacity of states like Ghana to conclude investment treaties and on how they should be interpreted and enforced.
Publications
Journal Article:
•DN Dagbanja, ‘Constitutionalism and Local Remedies Rule as Limitations on Investor-State Arbitration: Perspectives from Ghana’ (2017) 17(1) Oxford University Commonwealth Law Journal 1 http://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/naCKITGgZh4cDDxG4fVA/full
•DN Dagbanja, ‘The Limitations Environmental Protection Duty Places on Investment Treaty Making and Interpretation: Perspectives from Ghana’ 21(2015) African Yearbook of International Law (2017, forthcoming)
•DN Dagbanja, ‘The Investment Treaty Regime and Development Policy Space in Ghana: Analysis in Constitutionalism and General International Law’ in Andrea K Bjorklund (ed), Yearbook on International Investment Law and Policy: 2014-2015 (Oxford University Press, 2016) 405
•DN Dagbanja, ‘The Conflict of Legal Norms and Interests in International Investment Law: Towards The Constitutional-General International Law Imperatives Theory’ (2016) 6(3) Transnational Legal Theory 518, http://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/XVqQ9kpSj5AyJSy4xDKP/full
•DN Dagbanja, ‘The Investment Treaty Regime and Environmental Protection in Ghana: A Constitutional and General International Law Perspective on How to Retain Environmental Regulatory Autonomy,’ (2015) 12(2) Manchester Journal of International Economic Law 287
•DN Dagbanja, ‘The Limitation on Sovereign Regulatory Autonomy and Internationalisation of Investment Protection by Treaty: An African Perspective’ (2015) 60(1) Journal of African Law 1, shortlisted for Legal Research Foundation Inc Unpublished Post‐Graduate Paper Award 2013
•DN Dagbanja, ‘The Changing Pattern and Future of Foreign Investment Law and Policy in Ghana: The Role of International Investment Treaties’ (2014) (19) African Yearbook of International Law 83
•DN Dagbanja, ‘The Changing Pattern and Future of Foreign Investment Law and Policy in Ghana: The Role of Investment Promotion and Protection Agreements’ (2014) 7 African Journal of Legal Studies 253
•DN Dagbanja, ‘Privacy in Context: The Right to Privacy and Freedom and Independence of the Media under the Constitution of Ghana’ (2014) 22(1) African Journal of International and Comparative Law 40
•DN Dagbanja, ‘Promoting a Competitive Local Business Community in Ghana: The Role of the Legal Framework for Public Procurement’ (2014) 58(2) Journal of African Law 350
•DN Dagbanja ‘Human Rights, Mineral Rights and Corporate Social Responsibility in Ghana: Legal and Policy Analyses’ (2012) 13 Ghana Mining Journal 67
•DN Dagbanja, ‘The Institutional and Legal Framework for Public Procurement in Ghana: An Evaluative Study’ (2011) 7(2) GIMPA Journal of Leadership, Management and Administration 215
•DN Dagbanja, ‘The Role and Future of Customary Tort Law in Ghana: A Cross-Cultural Perspective’ (2009) 26 Arizona Journal of International & Comparative Law 303 (with Julie Davies)
•DN Dagbanja ‘The Nature and Scope of Contractor Qualification Systems: A Cross-Jurisprudential Inquiry’ (2009) 7 Journal of Contract Management 65

PhD Thesis:
DN Dagbanja, The Investment Treaty Regime and Public Interest Regulation in Ghana: Perspectives in Constitutionalism and General International Law (The University of Auckland, ResearcSpace@Auckland, 2016)


Authored Book:
•DN Dagbanja, The Law of Public Procurement in Ghana: Law, Policy and Practice (Saarbrücken: Lap Lambert Academic Publishing AG & Co Kg, 2011)

Book Contribution:
•DN Dagbanja, ‘The Right to Privacy and Legal Principles of Personal Data Protection in Ghana’ in Alex Makulilo (ed), African Data Privacy Laws (Springer International Publishing AG, 2016, forthcoming)
•DN Dagbanja, ‘Customary Tort Law in Sub-Saharan Africa’ in Mauro Bussani and Anthony Sebok (eds), Comparative Tort Law: Global Perspectives ( Edward Elgar Publishing, 2015) 412
•DN Dagbanja, ‘The Regulatory Framework for Public Procurement in Ghana’ in G Quinot and S Arrowsmtih (eds), Public Procurement Regulation in Africa (Cambridge University Press, 2013) 77
•DN Dagbanja, ‘Risk Allocation and Mitigation Mechanisms in the Formation and Administration of Construction Contracts: A Comparative Analysis’ in Proceedings of the 2009 National Housing Conference (Centre for Scientific and Industrial Research, Accra, 2009) 151

Working Paper:
•DN Dagbanja, ‘Why Do International Investment Treaty Standards Limit the Duty to Protect Human Rights? A Historical and Interpretive Analysis’ (New Zealand Centre for Human Rights Law Policy and Practice Working Papers No 11, 2 April 2013)


Online & National News Paper:
•DN Dagbanja, ‘An Exposition of the Law on Suspension of Procurement Proceedings and Performance of Procurement Contracts in Ghana’ Ghana Internet Law Review 2012/1
•DN Dagbanja, Development and Development Policymaking and International Investment Treaties in Ghana The Ghanaian Times (21 February 2013) 9
•DN Dagbanja, ‘Is the National Identification Authority Operational?’ The Ghanaian Times (27 May 2011) 9
Roles, responsibilities and expertise
•Dr Dagbanja currently teaches Company Law and co-supervising a PhD on the constitution and investment protection by treaty in Australia.
•PhD in Law (International Investment Law)
•LLM in Government Procurement Law
•LLM in Transnational Business Practice
•Qualifying Certificate and Certificate of Enrolment on the Roll of Lawyers in the Republic of Ghana
•Bachelor of Laws
•BA in Sociology with Linguistics
Future research
The Law of Public Procurement in Ghana
Funding received
•Researcher on European Research Council (Advanced Grant 323656–STC) project on Sociology of the Transnational Constitution, The University of Manchester School of Law, February-July 2016, £10,000.
•City University Law School, London, travel fund for presentation at its conference on Dominion Status at the Twilight of the British Empire: Examining National Liberation Movements & Dominion Constitutionalism, 10 July 2016, £441.
•The University of Auckland Doctoral Scholar, 2011-2015, The Investment Treaty Regime and Public Interest Regulation in Ghana: Perspectives in Constitutionalism and General International Law, NZ$87,500
•African Association of International Law travel fund for research presentation on The Implications of Investment Treaties for Environmental Protection in Ghana: Reconciling Standards of Investment Protection with Environmental Protection Duty at the Association’s conference in Gabon, August 2015, €4,353.04; and The University of Auckland PReSS Account, NZ$2000.
•Postgraduate Students Association Inc Travel Grant to speak on Development, Development Policymaking and International Investment Treaties at American Society of International Law International Economic Law Interest Group Biennial Conference in Washington DC, 29 November-1 December 2012, NZ$500
•The University of Auckland Faculty of Law Research Fund to speak on Development, Development Policymaking and International Investment Treaties at American Society of International Law International Economic Law Interest Group Biennial Conference in Washington DC, 29 November-1 December 2012, NZ$2,02.38
•The University of Auckland PReSS Account fund to travel to Ghana to gather data for PhD research, December 2012, NZ$1,200
Industrial relevance
Dr Dagbanja practised law in both the public and private sectors in Ghana. He was an Associate in the law firm of Bentsi-Enchill, Letsa & Ankomah and Assistant State Attorney in the Ministry of Justice and Attorney-General’s Department of Ghana. He also worked as a Senior Legal Officer at the Public Procurement Authority of Ghana.
Languages
•Likpakpaaln
•Bassari
•English
Memberships
•The American Society of International Law
•British Institute of International and Comparative Law
•Ghana Bar Association
•African Association of International Law
Honours and awards
•The University of Auckland Doctoral Scholarship
•Thomas Buergenthal Scholarship, The George Washington University Law School
•University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law Fellowship Award
•University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law Scholarship
•University of Ghana Faculty of Law Environmental Law Best Student Award
•University of Ghana Akuafo Hall Award for Best Graduating (First Class Honours) Students
•Saint Charles Senior Secondary School Award for placing 2nd in a class of 42

Previous positions
•Research Associate, The University of Manchester, United Kingdom
•Lecturer in Law, Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration, Accra, Ghana
•Graduate Teaching Assistant, The University of Auckland, New Zealand
Teaching
•LAWS2301: Company Law
Useful links
PhD Thesis: https://researchspace.auckland.ac.nz/bitstream/handle/2292/28285/whole.pdf?sequence=2
Research profile
Research profile and publications
 

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Last updated:
Tuesday, 3 November, 2015 2:39 PM