The International Bar Association International Criminal Court Moot Court Competition (IBA ICCMCC) welcomes universities from all over the world for a large-scale moot court simulating the proceedings of the International Criminal Court. The Competition consists of an extensive seven-day educational and social program, which brings together students of diverse backgrounds and cultures in The Hague to challenge their skills as future international lawyers before panels of legal experts in the field of international criminal law.


Through written and oral rounds fostering interaction between students and legal experts and professionals, the Competition:

  • Provides top students with an innovative educational experience with learning opportunities both in and outside the simulated Court proceedings.
  • Serves as a dynamic platform where legal experts and professionals worldwide come together to exchange experiences, share perspectives, and recognize the vital role of cultural diversity in the realm of International Criminal Law.
  • Offers sponsors the unique opportunity to promote their dedication to excellence in international law and to support the legal minds of the future.

The IBA ICCMCC is organized by the Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies – Leiden University (Grotius Centre) in partnership with the International Bar Association (IBA), and with the support of the International Criminal Court (ICC)

Purpose of the Competition – The purpose of the IBA ICC Moot Court Competition is threefold:

  • To allow the top law students from all over the world to improve their knowledge of international criminal law in general, the ICC, and its proceedings in particular;
  • To provide students with the opportunity to become familiar with world-famous institutions in The Hague such as the ICC, the UN International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals (IRMCT), the Kosovo Specialist Chambers (KSC), the International Court of Justice (ICJ) and the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA);
  • To enhance knowledge about the Rome Statute, especially within countries that have yet to ratify it, by providing the top legal minds of the future from both Member and non-Member States alike an opportunity to learn more about the ICC.

Competition Concept: Each year, student-teams are presented with a case involving a fictitious situation before the ICC. It is up to the student-teams to represent the interests of all parties to the best of their ability. Each student-team has to represent the parties substantively both in writing and through pleadings before so-called moot courts. The students’ memorials and pleadings are judged by legal experts. In this respect, the active involvement of judges and legal officers from the ICC, IRMCT and KSC, lawyers and professors of law guarantees the high intellectual standards of the Competition and its prestige.

Competition History: In 2004, Professor Emeritus Gayl S. Westerman and Matthew E. Brotmann organized a unique event at Pace University:  the world’s first moot court competition based on the law and procedures of the first permanent international tribunal dedicated to the prosecution of international criminal offenses. The ICC has grown since then, and so has the competition. In 2014, Pace has partnered with the Grotius Centre, and the ICC to become part of a new global competition, the ICC Moot Court Competition, which is held annually in The Hague, Netherlands, with the final round judged at the ICC itself by ICC judges and legal officers.  The annual competition at Pace now serves as a Regional Qualifying Round for that global competition.

In 2017, the ICCMCC started its collaboration with the IBA, and in 2020 the IBA became a name partner in the Competition.