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I·CONnect

Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law and ConstitutionMaking.org

Five Questions with Rosalind Dixon

Richard Albert, Boston College Law School

“Five Questions with … ” is a brand new feature at I-CONnect. We will periodically invite a public law scholar to answer five questions about his or her research.

Our third edition of “Five Questions with … ” features Rosalind Dixon, Professor of Law at the University of New South Wales, in Australia. Her official bio follows below:

Rosalind Dixon is a Professor of Law, at the University of New South Wales, Faculty of Law. She earned her BA and LLB from the University of New South Wales, and was an associate to the Chief Justice of Australia, the Hon. Murray Gleeson AC, before attending Harvard Law School, where she obtained an LLM and SJD. Her work focuses on comparative constitutional law and constitutional design, theories of constitutional dialogue and amendment, socio-economic rights and constitutional law and gender, and has been published in leading journals in the US, Canada, the UK and Australia, including the Cornell Law Review, University of Pennsylvania Journal of Constitutional Law, International Journal of Constitutional Law, American Journal of Comparative Law, Osgoode Hall Law Journal, Oxford Journal of Legal Studies and Sydney Law Review. She is co-editor, with Tom Ginsburg, of a leading handbook on comparative constitutional law, ComparativeConstitutional Law (Edward Elgar, 2011), and a related volume, Comparative Constitutional Law in Asia (Edward Elgar, 2014), co-editor (with Mark Tushnet and Susan Rose-Ackermann) of the Edward Elgar series on Constitutional and Administrative Law, on the editorial board of the Public Law Review, and associate editor of the Constitutions of the World series for Hart publishing.  Dixon is a member of the Gilbert + Tobin Centre of Public Law and deputy director of the Herbert Smith Freehills Initiative on Law and Economics. She previously served as an assistant professor at the University of Chicago Law School.

1. Tell us about something you are working on right now.

I am currently working on three main projects: a project on amendment with David Landau, which extends our prior work on the unconstitutional amendment doctrine and turns to questions of constitutional design; a project with Julie Suk on constitutions and economic inequality, which explores the general absence in democratic constitutions of any direct protection against discrimination based on wealth, income or poverty; and a piece on ‘responsive judicial review’, which continues my ongoing work on strong-weak forms of judicial review.

2. How and when do you write? Do you have a routine or do you write whenever and wherever you find the time?

I write in the office generally… and like Mark Tushnet, try and do other professional reading (teaching preparation, reading this blog and colleagues’ work etc) in coffee shops and at home.  I try and write every weekday I am not teaching more than a few hours… though of course no one with small children can ever keep to a true routine.

3. Whose scholarship jumps to the top of your reading list when she or he publishes something new? 

I try and keep up with a range of comparative scholars–and tend to follow themes more than names.  It is hard to keep up with everything one wants to read, though. It is a great restatement to the field that there is so much high quality work being done–and that the reading list is so long as a result.

4. Is there an article or book that influenced you as a law student and that continues today to be an important reference point for you?

I continue to go back to Etienne Mureinik’s piece on the South African Constitution, on a culture of justification.  It is a short piece, and focused more on executive action than most of my own work, but captures something very deep about what I think constitutionalism stands for in a world of reasonable disagreement.  A related piece by my SJD advisor Frank Michelman, which I read early in my career and influenced me, is in the first issue of I.CON–on social rights and justification.  I am also continually re-reading work by Cass Sunstein on minimalism, Tushnet on weak review and Waldron on legislative constitutionalism.  David Strauss, my former colleague at Chicago, also wrote an excellent piece on ‘The Irrelevance of Constitutional  Amendment’ which I disagree with in large part, but which helped shape my early interest in the relationship between formal and informal constitutional change.

5. What are some of the big questions ripe for inquiry in your area of research interest?

I think current political developments are pointing to a very important set of questions for all comparative constitutional scholars: how constitutions can respond to, but also guard against, the dangers inherent in the era of Brexit and Trump, i.e. isolationism, intolerance and authoritarian populism.  Leading scholars in the field,  including Sujit Choudhry, Sam Issacharoff, David Landau and now Tom Ginsburg and Aziz Huq, have already begun to think about these questions in the context of an important literature on dominant party democracy, democratic ‘hedging’ and ‘abusive constitutionalism’–but it is clear we have much more thinking to do in this area.  It is also equally clear that our thinking needs to extend to the economic roots of the current turn in democratic politics.  This is one reason I have recently agreed to co-lead a university wide ‘grand challenge’ at UNSW on inequality with a particular focus on economic inequality and its connection to democratic politics.

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Published on January 20, 2017
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Installation Ceremony for Alexander Tsesis as Raymond and Mary Simon Chair in Constitutional Law

Richard Albert, Boston College Law School

Please join I-CONnect in congratulating Alex Tsesis on his installation as the Raymond and Mary Simon Chair in Constitutional Law at the Loyola University, Chicago, School of Law. Alex is a leading scholar of constitutional law, with a focus on free speech and civil rights. The induction ceremony, featuring remarks from Sanford Levinson, is now online and available here.

Professor Alexander Tsesis joined the Loyola University, Chicago, School of Law faculty in July 2007. He teaches Constitutional Law, First Amendment, Civil Procedure, and seminars devoted to civil rights issues and constitutional interpretation.

His articles have appeared in many law reviews, including the Columbia Law Review, Cornell Law Review, Minnesota Law Review, Northwestern University Law Review, and Texas Law Review. Professor Tsesis is a frequent presenter to law school faculties nationwide on issues involving constitutional law, free speech, and civil rights. He is the Series Editor of the Cambridge University Press Studies on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties. He has been an expert witness for the Canadian Department of Justice and a legislative advisor to Senator Edward Kennedy. Professor Tsesis has also served as an outside manuscript reviewer for the Cambridge University Press, University of Chicago Press, University of Illinois Press, New York University Press, Oxford University Press, and Yale University Press.

His books include For Liberty and Equality: The Life and Times of the Declaration of Independence (Oxford University Press, 2012, Kindle & NOOK 2012, Audible Audio Edition 2013, paperback 2014), We Shall Overcome: A History of Civil Rights and the Law (Yale University Press 2008, Kindle & NOOK 2008, paperback 2009), The Thirteenth Amendment and American Freedom: A Legal History (New York University Press 2004, NOOK 2010), Destructive Messages: How Hate Speech Paves the Way for Harmful Social Movements (New York Univ. Press, 2002, 2d prtg. 2004, Kindle & NOOK 2010).  He is also the editor of The Promises of Liberty: The History and Contemporary Relevance of the Thirteenth Amendment (Columbia University Press, 2010, Kindle).

Many in the public law community know Alex as the driving force behind the Annual Constitutional Law Colloquium, entering its eighth edition in 2017. The Colloquium has attracted scholars from around the world and is today an important site for the rigorous exchange of ideas on all subjects in public law.

We thank Alex for all he has done for the community of public law scholars, and we congratulate him on this very special honor.

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Published on January 19, 2017
Author:          Filed under: Announcements; Call for Papers
 

Special Report on Romanian Parliamentary Elections

Bianca Selejan-Guțan, PhD, Professor of Constitutional Law, “Lucian Blaga” University of Sibiu, Romania

The most recent parliamentary elections in Romania, held last month in December 2016, did not bring about many surprises. In this special report, I shall draw the picture of the general context of the elections and I shall also try to present an accurate image of Romanian society 27 years after the fall of the totalitarian regime, as far as democratic values are concerned.

In November 2015, following the tragic events from “Colectiv”, the social-democrat Government led by Victor Ponta resigned under the pressure of the massive street protests against political corruption.[1] In these troubled circumstances, President Klaus Iohannis, elected in November 2014 after the highest turn-out since 1990[2], appointed a technocrat – Dacian Cioloș, a former European Commissioner for Agriculture – to form the new Government. Mr. Cioloș appointed a mainly technocratic Government, which had the task of running the country until the parliamentary elections in 2016.

The elections ended with a very low turn-out of 39.5%. This hasn’t been unusual in the last decade: the last parliamentary elections in 2012 had a 41.7% turn-out, and in 2008 it was even lower at 39.26%.

Read the rest of this entry…

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Published on January 18, 2017
Author:          Filed under: Developments
 

International Journal of Constitutional Law: Call for Reviews


Michaela Hailbronner, University of Pretoria, South Africa

ICON is celebrating its 15th anniversary in 2017, and we are running a short series on books that have inspired us and shaped how we think about comparative law, public international law or human rights (all broadly defined). Some senior scholars and justices will be contributing to the series, and we are now looking for two or three junior scholars (PhD, post-doc or junior faculty) to join them. Those selected will be asked write a short text (1000-2000 words) on a book that has been key in inspiring them to engage with these fields. The chosen book itself does not need to be a ‘law book’. Your text should explain the choice, how you encountered this particular book and why it prompted you to want to work and write on related questions. The successful texts will be published alongside the contributions by senior scholars in one of ICON’s 2017 print editions.
If you are interested in contributing to this series, send me a short email (mhailbronner(at)gmail.com) with the suggestion of a title, a one sentence description of the book and why it matters to you, and your current institutional affiliation.
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Published on January 18, 2017
Author:          Filed under: Announcements; Call for Papers
 

What’s New in Public Law

–Angélique Devaux, Cheuvreux Notaires, Paris, France, Diplômée notaire, LL.M. Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law

In this weekly feature, I-CONnect publishes a curated reading list of developments in public law. “Developments” may include a selection of links to news, high court decisions, new or recent scholarly books and articles, and blog posts from around the public law blogosphere.

To submit relevant developments for our weekly feature on “What’s New in Public Law,” please email contact.iconnect@gmail.com.

Developments in Constitutional Courts

  1. The Italian Constitutional Court rejected a trade union’s proposal to force labor law reform.
  2. The Canadian Supreme Court ruled that a landowner cannot sue the Alberta energy regulator because its immunity extends to claims of constitutional violations.  
  3. The New Jersey Supreme Court established factors such as age, family environment, and peer pressure for juvenile long-term sentencing.
  4. A California Appeals Court ruled that a pioneer law that requires prosecutors to decide whether to use lethal force is unconstitutional.
  5. Germany’s Supreme Court rejected challenges to the European Union – Canada trade deal signed last year.

In the News

  1. The Turkish Parliament started debates about rewriting the constitution.
  2. The Thai Parliament approved the King’s request for constitutional changes.
  3. The U.S. House of Representatives voted to begin repealing the Affordable Health Care Act (Obamacare).
  4. The North Dakota Senate rejected a bill to update the definition of marriage and recognize same-sex marital relationships.
  5. Thailand is considering death penalty sentencing for corruption convictions for Thai officials.
  6. The President of Kazakhstan agreed to constitutional reforms that would lead to separation of powers.
  7. The German Federal Constitutional Court is about to rule on banning a far-right party.
  8. Ireland is about to reconsider its legislation banning abortion.

New Scholarship

  1. Seema Mohapatra, Assisted reproduction inequality and marriage equality, Chicago-Kent Law Review (forthcoming) (examining how the advent of marriage equality may impact the rights of same sec couples to have biological children via assisted reproduction and surrogacy after Obergefell v. Hodges)
  2. Wang Jingen & Larry A. DiMatteo, Chinese Reception and Transplantation of Western Contract Law, 34 Berkeley Journal of International Law (2016), (studying the foreign and international law influences on Chinese contract law)
  3. Ngoc Son Bui, Vietnamese Constitutional Debate in Comparative Perspective, Asian Journal of Comparative Law, Volume 11, Issue 2, December 2016 (examining the debates on sensitive, substantive, and controversial constitutional questions pertaining to fundamental features of the socialist polity in Vietnam)
  4. Mirjam Kunkler & Tine Stein, Ernst-Wolfgang Bockenforde–Constitutional and Political Theory, Selected Writings, Oxford University Press (forthcoming) (Contextualizing bockenforde’s work through detailed section introductions and editors’ annotations throughout the articles and giving an insight into Bockenforde’s experiences as a judge at the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany)
  5. William Thomas Worster, Contracting Out of Non-Refoulement Protections (studying the three forms of contracting out on non-refoulement: agreements that establish facts, agreements that establish jurisdiction or agreements creating completing norms)
  6. Grainne De Burca, Human Rights Experimentalism, American Journal of International Law (forthcoming) (analyzing criticism made to the human rights system and responding to this criticism by surveying a body of recent empirical scholarship on the effectiveness of human rights treaties, and interpreting key aspects of the functioning of those treaties from the perspective of experimentalist governance theory)
  7. Joo-Cheong Tham & K. D. Ewing, Labour Clauses in the TPP and TTIP: A comparison Without Difference?, Melbourne Journal of International Law, Vol. 17, No. 2, 2016 (providing a critical analysis of the labor clauses in trade agreements, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership)
  8. Nadia E. Nedzel, Brexit, the Rule of Law, and Hayek’s Spontaneous Order, (comparing the rule of law in the common law and the civil law systems in light in the Brexit context)

Calls for Papers and Announcements

  1. The Nova Law School in Lisbon, Portugal calls for papers for its EU conference on “The Federal Experience of the European Union: Past, Present, and Future to be held on May 22-23, 2017 in Lisbon, Portugal.
  2. The Anti-Discrimination Law Review is inviting articles for its next volume to be published in 2017.
  3. The Central European University, Summer University announced its summer courses related to specific challenges in Africa to be held in Budapest, Hungary from July 3 to July 14, 2017.
  4. The King’s College London announced a series of seminars on the meaning of Brexit and its potential impact on different areas of law.
  5. Kent Critical Law Society calls for proposals for the Critical Law Conference 2017 which will take place on March 18 -19th, 2017 in Woolf College, University of Kent, Canterbury.
  6. The European Society of International Law, interest group on “International Environmental Law” calls for papers for its 13th ESIL Annual Conference on “Global Public Goods, Global Commons and Fundamental Values: The Responses of International Law”, to be held in Naples, on 7–9 September 2017.
  7. The Younger Comparativists Committee of the American Society of Comparative Law (YCC) welcomes submissions for the Phanor J. Eder LL.B./J.D. Prize in Comparative Law, in connection with its Sixth Annual Conference, to be held on April 28-29, 2017, at Koç University Law School in Istanbul, Turkey [deadline January 16th, 2017].

Elsewhere Online

  1. Dan Bilefsky, Muslim Girls in Switzerland Must Attend Swim Class With Boys, Court Says, The New York Times
  2. Jean-Philippe Derosier, La proportionnelle : non à l’overdose, Le Monde
  3. Maciej Kisilowski, Poland : A Country Without A Constitution, The EU Observer
  4. Linda Greenhouse, What the Chief Justice Should Have said, The New York Times
  5. Anne Smith & Monica McWilliams, Now is The Time To Re-open The Debate About Progressing The Northern Ireland Bill of Rights, UK Constitutional Law Association
  6. Nafees Ahmad, Racism in India: Equality Constitutionalism and Lego-Institutionalism response, Comparative Law Prof Blog
  7. Russel A. Miller, How To Kill An Idea: An American’s Observations on the NPD Party-Ban Proceedings, Verfasungsblog
  8. Gabor Halmai, The Hungarian Constitutional Court and Constitutional Identity, Verfasungsblog
  9. Anna Mrozek & Anna Sledzinska-Simon, Constitutional Review as an Indispensable Element of the Rule of Law? Poland as the Divided State between Political and Legal Constitutionalism, Verfasungsblog
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Published on January 16, 2017
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On My Way Out IV – Teaching (I·CON 14, Issue 4: Editorial)

J. H. H. Weiler, New York University School of Law; Co-Editor-in-Chief, I·CON

I have almost reached the final phase of my academic and professional career and as I look back I want to offer, for what it is worth, some Do’s and Don’ts on different topics to younger scholars in the early phases of theirs. A lot of what I may say will appear to many as a statement of the obvious – but if it so appears ask yourself why so many experienced and seasoned academics still fall into the trap. In previous Editorials in this Journal and the European Journal of International Law I addressed the art of delivering a conference paper,[1] the management of one’s scholarly agenda[2] and the pitfalls of editing or contributing to edited books.[3] I turn here to the issue of teaching.

To put it mildly, there is considerable ambiguity, even ambivalence, in the messages, explicit and implicit, that a young university teacher receives upon starting his or her academic career as regards teaching. To be sure, much lip service is paid to the importance of teaching as part of the academic duties of the young teacher. Practice varies but in several systems, especially in the early stages of one’s career, the title itself provides an indication: Instructor, Lecturer (even Senior Lecturer) and in several languages the title Professor itself indicates primarily the teaching function. Applicants are oftentimes required to provide a Statement on Teaching and in some systems there is a requirement and in others it is desirable to provide, in addition to a scholarly portfolio, demonstration of some “teaching practice.”

But consider the following, almost universal, paradox. To receive a position as a kindergarten teacher, an elementary school teacher or a high school teacher, in most jurisdictions the applicant would have to have undergone specialized training – in addition to any subject-matter university degree he or she may have earned – to occupy a position of such individual and collective responsibility. The exception? University teachers. There are very, very few universities around the world that require any measure of formal training in the art and science of university teaching. A doctorate has become an almost universal requirement for teaching in our field – the USA being the glaring exception (as regards law). It is a requirement in practically all other disciplines in the USA. And yet typically a doctorate programme is training for research, not for teaching.

Read the rest of this entry…

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Published on January 15, 2017
Author:          Filed under: Editorials
 

ICON’s Current Issue (Table of Contents)

I·CON

 Volume 14 Issue 4

 Table of Contents

Editorial

Articles

Tom Hickey, The republican virtues of the “new commonwealth model of constitutionalism”

Nathan J. Brown and Julian G. Waller, Constitutional courts and political uncertainty: Constitutional ruptures and the rule of judges

Cora Chan, A preliminary framework for measuring deference in rights reasoning

Jeremie Gilbert and David Keane, Equality versus fraternity? Rethinking France and its minorities

I.CON: Debate!

Neil Walker, The return of constituent power: A reply to Mattias Kumm

Mattias Kumm, Constituent power, boundaries and identity: On the justificatory depth of constitutionalism – A rejoinder to Neil Walker

I.CON: Debate!

Gráinne de Búrca, Nominal democracy? A reply to Robert Keohane

Jonathan W. Kuyper and John S. Dryzek, Real, not nominal, global democracy: A reply to Robert Keohane

Robert O. Keohane, Nominal democracy?:  A rejoinder to Gráinne de Búrca and Jonathan Kuyper and John Dryzek

Critical Review of Governance: Symposium on Religion

 Gila Stopler, Hobby Lobby, S.A.S., and the resolution of religion-based conflicts in liberal states

Kristin Henrard, Duties of reasonable accommodation on grounds of religion in the jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights: A tale of (baby) steps forward and missed opportunities

Christian Joppke, Beyond the wall of separation: Religion and the American state in comparative perspective

Ronan McCrea, Rights as a basis for the religious neutrality of the state: Lessons from Europe for American defenders of non-establishment

 Book Reviews

Machteld Zee. Choosing Sharia? Multiculturalism, Islamic Fundamentalism & Sharia Councils;  John R. Bowen. On British Islam: Religion, law and Everyday Practice in Shari’a Councils (Silke Elrifai)

Nicholas Aroney, Peter Gerangelos, Sarah Murray, James Stellios. The Constitution of the Commonwealth of Australia (Carol Daugherty Rasnic)

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Published on January 15, 2017
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Five Questions with Tom Ginsburg

Richard Albert, Boston College Law School

“Five Questions with … ” is a brand new feature at I-CONnect. We will periodically invite a public law scholar to answer five questions about his or her research.

Our second edition of “Five Questions with … ” features Tom Ginsburg, Leo Spitz Professor of International Law, Ludwig and Hilde Wolf Research Scholar, and Professor of Political Science. His full bio follows below:

Tom Ginsburg focuses on comparative and international law from an interdisciplinary perspective. He holds BA, JD, and PhD degrees from the University of California at Berkeley. His books include Judicial Review in New Democracies (2003), which won the C. Herman Pritchett Award from the American Political Science Association; The Endurance of National Constitutions (2009), which also won a best book prize from APSA; Constitutions in Authoritarian Regimes (2014); and Judicial Reputation (2015). He currently co-directs the Comparative Constitutions Project, an effort funded by the National Science Foundation to gather and analyze the constitutions of all independent nation-states since 1789. Before entering law teaching, he served as a legal adviser at the Iran-U.S. Claims Tribunal, The Hague, Netherlands, and he continues to work with numerous international development agencies and foreign governments on legal and constitutional reform. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

1. Tell us about something you are working on right now.

With my colleague Aziz Huq, I’m working on constitutional retrogression, that is situations in which democratic constitutional orders degrade, though do not collapse. It seems, sadly, relevant to our time but maybe it will be a purely theoretical project. Mila Versteeg and I have a project on constitutional origins, and Rosalind Dixon and I are working on a paper on various forms of political insurance.

2. How and when do you write? Do you have a routine or do you write whenever and wherever you find the time?

I’m also very interested in how people organize their time—constantly looking for a good formula. Let me know if you hear of one. Personally I’ve had enormous writers’ block the last few months. Very frustrating. It took me all fall to draft a book review and a short conference paper. Maybe a routine would help.

3. Whose scholarship jumps to the top of your reading list when she or he publishes something new? 

Adrian Vermeule is consistently interesting; Edward Rubin of Vanderbilt is underappreciated but very brilliant. My heroes are Don Horowitz and Sandy Levinson—have they ever written anything not worth reading?

4. Is there an article or book that influenced you as a law student and that continues today to be an important reference point for you?

He was my PhD advisor so I am biased, but I still teach Martin Shapiro’s Courts book, which is full of great gems. I aspire to be equally broad in my teaching and in my efforts to understand courts and constitutions.

5. What are some of the big questions ripe for inquiry in your area of research interest?

Can constitutional democracy survive structural economic inequality? Constitutions don’t do much about inequality, (except perhaps to entrench it as Roberto Gargarella has written in his history of Latin America) but it would be good to have a better account of the relationships among democracy, constitutions, and redistribution.

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Published on January 13, 2017
Author:          Filed under: Reviews
 

Enough Complacency: Fighting Democratic Decay in 2017 (I-CONnect Column)

Tom Gerald Daly, Associate Director, Edinburgh Centre for Constitutional Law

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[Editor’s note: This is the inaugural I-CONnect column — a new column will appear once every two weeks.  The idea of the columns is to provide the blog with regular contributors who have a distinctive voice and unique perspective on public law. Columns, while scholarly in accordance with the tone of the blog and about the same length as a normal blog post, will be a bit more “op-ed” in nature than standard posts. For more information and for a list of the four columnists for 2017, see here.]

The philosopher Derek Parfit offers an interesting thought experiment on transformation:

Suppose that a scientist were to begin replacing your cells, one by one, with those of Greta Garbo at the age of thirty. At the beginning of the experiment, the recipient of the cells would clearly be you, and at the end it would clearly be Garbo, but what about in the middle? It seems implausible to suggest that you could draw a line between the two—that any single cell could make all the difference between you and not-you. (…) There is no simple answer—it is a matter of degrees.[1]

So it is with democratic decay. As opposed to, say, an abrupt halt to democratic governance through a coup d’état or foreign occupation, it is the incremental nature of decay that renders it so insidious. Bit by bit, not only the structures of democratic governance but also the substance, the animating spirit, of a democratic political community are eroded, chipped away, sapped of their vitality. Slowly, the cellular structure of a liberal constitutional democracy morphs into a non-democratic form,[2] with the potential for descent into ‘harder’ authoritarianism–yet there is rarely any one flash point that galvanizes remedial action.

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Published on January 11, 2017
Author:          Filed under: Analysis
 

What’s New in Public Law

–Sandeep Suresh, LL.M in Comparative Constitutional Law (Central European University, Budapest)

In this weekly feature, I-CONnect publishes a curated reading list of developments in public law. “Developments” may include a selection of links to news, high court decisions, new or recent scholarly books and articles, and blog posts from around the public law blogosphere.

To submit relevant developments for our weekly feature on “What’s New in Public Law,” please email contact.iconnect@gmail.com.

Developments in Constitutional Courts

  1. The Indian Supreme Court held that Section 123 (3) of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 prohibits candidates from making religious appeals (religion of the candidates as well as the voters) during election campaigns for gaining votes.
  2. The Supreme Court of Nepal ruled in favour of the Government to proceed with a significant constitutional amendment that aims to include demands of ethnic groups in Nepal concerning citizenship and boundary demarcation.
  3. The Indian Supreme Court dropped the contempt of court proceedings against Justice Markandeya Katju (former Supreme Court Judge) after accepting his apology affidavit. Contempt proceedings were initiated against Justice Katju for writing certain blog posts against current judges of the apex court.
  4. The Ombudsman of Romania approached the country’s Constitutional Court challenging a law that prohibits persons convicted for criminal offences from joining the government.
  5. The Indian Supreme Court held, inter alia, that ordinances have to be laid before the legislative assembly or the Parliament as per the mandate of Articles 213 or 123 of the Constitution (in the judgment, the court relied on a book written by I-CONnect author Shubhankar Dam: Presidential Legislation in India (CUP 2014)).

In the News

  1. The Government of Czech Republic is proposing to introduce a constitutional amendment that would allow citizens to use arms against terrorists during attacks.
  2. The President of Slovakia sent a new bill which makes it onerous for religious minorities to become official or form religious societies back to the Parliament for reconsideration.
  3. Syrian Kurdish parties adopted a draft federal constitution for northern Syria.
  4. The President of India approved the Specified Bank Notes (Cessation of Liabilities) Ordinance, 2016 which criminalizes possession of demonetized currency notes of Rs.500 and Rs.1000 beyond a prescribed limit.
  5. The Mauritius Government gave the nod for introducing a constitutional amendment that aims to amend the Constitution to establish the Prosecution Commission as a check against the decisions of the Directorate of Public Prosecutions.

New Scholarship

  1. Richard Albert, The State of the Art in Constitutional Amendment, in Richard Albert, Xenophon Contiades & Alkmene Fotiadou (eds.), The Foundations and Traditions of Constitutional Amendment (Hart: Oxford 2017) (Forthcoming) (examining the architecture of constitutional amendment rules, the current challenges in the study of constitutional change, and the major fault lines in the field of constitutional change)
  2. Anuj Bhuwania, Courting the People: Public Interest Litigation in Post-Emergency India (CUP 2017) (studying the political role that public interest litigation has come to play in contemporary India)
  3. Sujit Choudhry and Tom Ginsburg (eds.), Constitution Making (Edward Elgar Publishing 2016) (presenting a critical volume of theoretical literature (case studies as well as classic articles) on constitution-making)
  4. Tarunabh Khaitan, Directive Principles and the Expressive Accommodation of Ideological Dissenters (December 22, 2016) (arguing that constitutional directives can be a useful tool for the expressive accommodation of ideological dissenters in the society)
  5. Andreas Lienhard and Daniel Kettiger (eds.), The Judiciary between Management and the Rule of Law (1st ed., Nomos 2016) (presenting the results of the research project ‘Basic Research into Court Management in Switzerland’ relating to key areas like the environment in which the judiciary works, its resources, caseload management etc…)
  6. Valsamis Mitsilegas, Surveillance and Digital Privacy in the Transatlantic ‘War on Terror’: The Case for a Global Privacy Regime, Queen Mary School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper, No. 251 (2017) (examining the impact of the war on terror on the right to privacy)
  7. Katharine Young, Proportionality, Reasonableness, and Economic and Social Rights, in Vicki C. Jackson and Mark Tushnet (eds.), Proportionality: New Frontiers, New Challenges (CUP 2017) (Forthcoming) (examining the relationship between reasonableness review and proportionality within the context of socio-economic rights).

Calls for Papers and Announcements

  1. Papers are invited for an international symposium on “The Separation of Powers: A Global Dialogue,” to be held at the University of Milan on May 22, 2017, featuring Jürgen Bast, Cindy Skach, Stephen Tierney, Jeremy Waldron, Anneli Albi, Leonard Besselink, Tommaso Edoardo Frosini, Giuseppe De Vergottini, Nicolò Zanon and Vincenzo Zeno-Zencovich. The submission deadline is January 15, 2017.
  2. The Jindal Global Law School is inviting paper abstracts for the Colloquium on ‘Judicial Reasoning and Judicial Behavior’. The colloquium will be held in Sonipat, Harayana on April 29 and 30, 2016. Interested scholars must submit their paper abstracts by February 15, 2017 to Sannoy Das at sdas@jgu.edu.in.
  3. The Berkeley Center for Law & Technology is inviting paper abstracts for the 10th Annual ‘Privacy Law’ Scholars Conference on June 1 and 2, 2017 in Berkeley, California. Interested participants must submit their abstracts by January 20, 2017. For more details, visit the conference website.
  4. The Oxford Symposium on ‘Population, Migration, and the Environment’ will be held on March 15 and 16, 2017. This symposium focuses on global environmental issues and its effects on human welfare and progress. The deadline for submitting abstracts is February 20, 2017 and interested scholars must visit the symposium website to submit the same.
  5. The Polish Yearbook of International Law is inviting articles for its next volume to be published in June, 2017. Manuscripts must concern public and private international law, including European law. The manuscripts must be within the word limit of 10,000 words (including footnotes). Interested authors must send their works to pyil@inp.pan.pl by January 31, 2017.
  6. Laws, an open access Journal, is currently inviting submissions for its special issue on ‘Privacy and Surveillance in a Digital Age’. Interested authors must send their papers by May 31, 2017. For more details, visit the conference website.

Elsewhere Online

  1. Marta Machado, Brazil: Supreme Court panel majority: Criminalization of abortion is incompatible with the Constitution, reprohealthlaw
  2. Vibha Datta Makhija, Sedition And Free Speech: An Antithesis, Bloomberg Quint
  3. Tomasz Tadeusz Koncewicz, Living under the unconstitutional capture and hoping for the constitutional recapture, Verfassungsblog
  4. Gautam Bhatia, ‘O Brave New World’: The Supreme Court’s Evolving Doctrine of Constitutional Evasion, Indian Constitutional Law and Philosophy
  5. Carlos Closa Montero, Is Article 50 Reversible? On Politics Beyond Legal Doctrine, Verfassungsblog
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Published on January 9, 2017
Author:          Filed under: Developments