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As the world’s coastal states go about dividing up the ocean floor, the work of the Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf plays an increasingly important role. The Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf: Law and Legitimacy examines the Commission from two different but interrelated perspectives: a legal analysis of the Commission’s decision-making; and a study of normative legitimacy related to the Commission and its procedures. Insights into the history of the development of the concept of the continental shelf in the law of the sea are offered, including an explanation of how the institutionalized method for ascertaining continental shelf limits in the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea came into being. Through a deep-ranging analysis of the Commission and its work, the book introduces a framework for assessing best practices, and will serve as a useful reference for academics, scientists and policymakers alike.