2 Int'l Org. L. Rev. 1 (2005)

handle is hein.journals/iolr2 and id is 1 raw text is: International Organizations Law Review 2: 1-8, 2005
Q2005 Koninklijke Brill NV Leiden, The -Netherlands.
EDITORIAL: UPDATING INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS
NIELS M. BLOKKER AND RAMSES A. WESSEL*
[T]he principles and purposes of the United Nations, as set out in the
Charter, remain as valid and relevant today as they were in 1945, [...]
the present moment is a precious opportunity to put them into practice.
But while purposes should be firm and principles constant, practice and
organization need to move with the times.1
Tenipora rnutantur, nos et rnutamur iii illis. Times change, and we with them.
This old wisdom also holds true for international organizations: times change,
and international organizations with them.
Most treaties that create international organizations are concluded for an
indefinite period of time. It is obvious that, during their existence, the milieu
in and for which the organization was created does not remain the same. Politi-
cal, economic, technological, social, cultural, and other developments rapidly
change our society. International organizations have to keep pace with these
changes in order to remain capable of performing their functions and to avoid
becoming irrelevant. In turn, international organizations are also created to
assist in steering these changes and to shape conditions for future cooperation
between members.
As times change, how do international organizations develop and change?
First of all, international organizations are instruments of change by definition.
Woodrow Wilson was right when he stated that a living thing is born when he
presented the first draft of the League of Nations Covenant.2 Constitutions of
international organizations not only lay down rights and obligations of members,
they also create organs having powers of their own. No matter whether these are
N.M. Blokker is Professor of International Institutional Law (Schermers Chair), Law
Faculty, Leiden University, and legal counsel, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Netherlands.
The views expressed are personal. R.A. Wessel is Professor of the Law of the European
Union and other International Organizations, University of Twente, the Netherlands. They
are Editors-in-Chief of this Journal.
In larger freedom: towards development, security and human rights for all, Report of
the Secretary-General, UN Doc. A/59/2005, para. 153.
2   Quoted by EP. Walters, A History qf the League of Nations 1 (1950).

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