LL4AY      Half Unit
International Tax Systems

This information is for the 2023/24 session.

Teacher responsible

Eduardo Baistrocchi


This course is available on the LLM (extended part-time), LLM (full-time) and University of Pennsylvania Law School LLM Visiting Students. This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.


This course has a limited number of places and demand is typically high. This may mean that you’re not able to get a place on this course.

Course content

The course offers a comprehensive introduction to international taxation. It examines how taxation applies to transactions in the international context. The focus is on rules that operate at a global level, particularly the OECD Model Tax Convention on Income and on Capital, which is the basis of over 3,000 bilateral tax treaties worldwide. The course will look at a series of cross-border transactions, starting with the basic example of an export and import of goods and culminating with the treatment of some complex and artificial structures. The features of tax systems will be studied through these transactions, particularly those found in double tax conventions and the law of the European Union. This approach will be supplemented with the analysis of some foundation concepts needed to study international taxation. Throughout the course examples will be drawn from the tax systems of a range of jurisdictions, including G20 countries and non-G20 tax hubs.


This course will have 20 hours of teaching content in Winter Term and an additional two hours of teaching in the Spring Term. There will be a Reading Week in Week 6 of Winter Term.

Formative coursework

Students will have the option of producing a formative essay of 2,000 words.

Indicative reading

Detailed reading lists will be provided during the course via Moodle.


Sample readings:

Reuven S. Avi-Yonah, 'Double Tax Treaties: An Introduction (2007). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1048441;

Eduardo Baistrocchi, The International Tax Regime and Global Power Shifts (May 17, 2021). Virginia Tax Review, Vol. 20, No. 2, 2021, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3744992; 

Eduardo Baistrocchi, The International Tax Regime and the BRIC World: Elements for a Theory (May 10, 2013). Oxford J Legal Studies, May 2013, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2336294;

Edward Kleinbard, Stateless Income (November 15, 2011). Florida Tax Review, Vol. 11, p. 699, 2011, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1791769;

Roxan, Ian, 'Limits to Globalisation: Some Implications for Taxation, Tax Policy, and the Developing World' (January 30, 2012). LSE Legal Studies Working Paper No. 3/2012. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1995633


Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours, reading time: 15 minutes) in the spring exam period.

Key facts

Department: Law School

Total students 2022/23: 17

Average class size 2022/23: 17

Controlled access 2022/23: Yes

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Course selection videos

Some departments have produced short videos to introduce their courses. Please refer to the course selection videos index page for further information.

Personal development skills

  • Communication
  • Specialist skills