UNIDROIT currently has two ongoing Academic Projects, which aim to facilitate and further the academic study and assessment of two of the most successful UNIDROIT Conventions, as well as to share information in a wider academic network. The success of this format is twofold: the continuity of conferences and publications, and the expansion of parties to the treaties.
The Cape Town Convention Academic Project (CTCAP) is a joint undertaking between Unidroit and the University of Cambridge Faculty of Law, under the auspices of the Centre for Corporate and Commercial Law (3CL). The Aviation Working Group is the founding sponsor of the project. Professor Ignacio Tirado (Unidroit), Professor Louise Gullifer (University of Cambridge), and Professor Jeffrey Wool (Aviation Working Group) serve as the Directors of CTCAP. It was originally founded in July 2011 as a collaboration between the University of Oxford and the University of Washington, in collaboration with Unidroit.
The primary objective of CTCAP is to facilitate and further the academic study and assessment of the Convention on International Interests in Mobile Equipment (the Cape Town Convention) and its Protocols. It does this by providing a comprehensive, digitised and searchable repository (ctcap.org) of documents and publications related to the Cape Town Convention and its Protocols.
Additionally, from time to time, CTCAP issues annotations to the Official Commentary on the Convention and the Aircraft Protocol, in order to provide further guidance on specific issues relevant to practitioners and researchers of the Cape Town Convention. It also publishes the Cape Town Convention Academic Journal, as well as organises the annual Cape Town Convention Academic Project Conference.
Finally, CTCAP also oversees two related projects on the Economic Assessment of International Commercial Law Reform, and on Best Practices in the Field of Electronic Registry Design and Operation (BPER). These projects further compliment research on the Cape Town Convention and assist in its implementation in different parts of the world. In 2021, the BPER Project published a Best Practices Guide for Electronic Collateral Registries.
The work of CTCAP is aimed for the benefit of scholars, students, practising lawyers, judges, governments officials and others working in the relevant industries, including by the provision of information on, and education about the Cape Town Convention and its Protocols. The project seeks to enhance the study of the many questions posed by the application of the Cape Town Convention, including, but not limited to, aspects of commercial and financial law, including property rights, insolvency, electronic commerce, and dispute resolution. The Project seeks to further understanding and effective implementation of the treaty and its protocols, as well as advancing its aims.
The 1995 Unidroit Convention Academic Project (UCAP) is aimed at raising awareness and improving knowledge about the 1995 Unidroit UCAP is an online platform of shared material about the 1995 Unidroit Convention, UNESCO-Unidroit Model Provisions and other related international tools. UCAP provides an opportunity to assess the significance and operational aspects of the 1995 Unidroit Convention and its interaction with other regional and international instruments with a view also to assess their legal impact.
The project aims to promote a favourable legal environment for the restitution and return of stolen or illegally exported cultural objects through knowledge sharing and dissemination, as well as projects pursued individually by the partners and members or on the basis of joint initiatives. UCAP also seeks to assist practising lawyers, judges, other government officials, as well as art market players, such as art collectors, dealers, auction houses and museums by providing information about the legal framework protecting cultural property.
Taking a step further into cultural heritage education, studies and research carried out under UCAP facilitates the identification of best practices in the art market in order to provide innovative means of implementation of the aforementioned instruments.
Unidroit is invited to deliver lectures on its instruments relating to cultural property in many universities and such activities are developed within the framework of the Unidroit Convention Academic Project (UCAP).