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Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment (CCSI)


The Columbia Center on Sustainable Investment (CCSI), a joint-center of Columbia Law School and the Earth Institute, is a leading applied research center and forum dedicated to the study, discussion and practice of sustainable international investment. 

CCSI's mission is to develop and disseminate practical approaches for governments, investors, communities,
and other stakeholders to maximize the impact of international investment for sustainable development.

Guided by its five-pillar framework, CCSI integrates interdisciplinary research, advisory projects, multi-stakeholder dialogue, educational programs, and the development of resources and tools.

Negotiation Support General

Regional focus:


Assistance criteria:

CCSI’s assistance must at all times be objective and independent.

Sector focus:

CCSI conducts research and provides advice in relation to the following sectors:

  • Extractive industries; 
  • Large-scale land & agricultural investments; 
  • Infrastructure investments; and
  • Investment treaties.

Collaboration with partners:

Yes – CCSI regularly collaborates with partners such as ISLP, NRGI, and the World Bank, among others.

Types of expertise:

Legal: In-house: five (with Australian law, English law, California State law, and New York State law capabilities). CCSI also draws on the advice of external legal experts.

Economists, financial analysis/ financial modeling: In-house: two experts. CCSI also draws on the advice of external experts.

Good governance: CCSI in-house staff have expertise in good governance of natural resources.

Social impact and human rights: One in-house expert.

Fiscal and tax management: CCSI has in-house expertise and also draws on the advice of external experts.

Number of in-house experts:

Currently seven full time staff comprising five lawyers and two economists.

Length of involvement:

Both short term and longer term roles.

Fee/non-fee based support:

Generally non-fee based, though may require funding for administrative costs, staff time and travel costs.

Speed of response:

Rapid – depending on the type of assistance requested.

Practical constraints:


Types of negotiation support

Setting the Legal & Policy Framework Stage:

Yes - CCSI staff can provide assistance with policy formulation as well as the review and reform of countries' legal and regulatory frameworks.

Pre-Negotiation Stage:

Yes - CCSI can provide assistance with financial models and model contracts.

Contract Negotiation Stage:

No - Though CCSI staff can provide a review of the contractual terms of a contract or a financial model.

Implementation & Monitoring Stage:

CCSI contract implementation support is limited to the provision of capacity-building trainings.

Advancing Knowledge-Sharing and Management:

Yes - CCSI has developed a range of tools and resources which are available on its website:

CCSI, together with the World Bank and the Natural Resource Governance Institute, has also been working on an online, searchable, user-friendly database of publicly available oil, gas, and mining contracts from around the world. This database is accessible at

Provider Type:

Support Providers