Judges’ identity and diversity: differences between domestic and international adjudication

International courts differ from national courts in terms of the perception of their diversity. Factors that constitute the identity of adjudicators and are perceived as neutral at the domestic level, such as age, former profession and cultural background, are no longer considered neutral in an international court. Conversely, factors that are not seen as acceptable domestically, such as membership of a political party, may be acceptable for international judges. This paper scrutinizes the factors influencing the world views and personalities of judges and their effects on the judicial process as well as the extent to which the judiciary is perceived as trustworthy. The paper analyses international courts’ continuous battle with the fundamental balancing act of dispensing justice in a particular case while safeguarding the consistency of the system in its entirety. Finally, the paper examines factors that unify international courts despite, or perhaps even because of, their diversity.