Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law

Call for Nominations–Mark Tushnet Prize in Comparative Law

Richard Albert, William Stamps Farish Professor of Law, The University of Texas at Austin

In my capacity as Chair of the AALS Section on Comparative Law, I have created a new award to recognize untenured scholars at AALS Member Schools for excellence in comparative law. I invite our readers to submit nominations for the award, which will be named the “Mark Tushnet Prize in Comparative Law.” Self-nominations are welcome as well. The Call for Nominations follows below.

Mark Tushnet Prize in Comparative Law

Call for Nominations

The AALS Section on Comparative Law is pleased to announce the inaugural “Mark Tushnet Prize” to recognize scholarly excellence in any subject of comparative law by an untenured scholar at an AALS Member School.

The Prize will be given to the author(s) of a scholarly article judged to have made an important contribution in the field of comparative law. This article must have been published in an academic journal between July 1, 2018 and June 30, 2019.

The Prize will be awarded for the first time at the 2020 AALS Annual Meeting, scheduled for January 2-5, 2020. It will be awarded every year thereafter. All untenured scholars—including but not limited to tenure-track professors, visiting assistant professors, lecturers, academic fellows, doctoral candidates—are eligible.

Nominations should be sent by email to Trish Do ( no later than 12:00pm Central time on August 1st, 2019. Nominations should include the full name, institutional affiliation, and contact information for the nominated scholar, in addition to a PDF version of the published article to be considered for the Prize. Self-nominations are welcomed.

For all questions, please contact Professor Richard Albert (, Chair of the AALS Section on Comparative Law.

Prize Committee

  • Richard Albert (Texas) (Chair)
  • Mark Kende (Drake)
  • Margaret Woo (Northeastern)

About Mark Tushnet

Mark Tushnet, a former president of the Association of American Law Schools, is the William Nelson Cromwell Professor of Law at Harvard Law School. A former law clerk to Justice Thurgood Marshall, Tushnet is an authoritative voice in constitutional law and theory. His scholarship spans all areas of public law, including comparative constitutional law, a field in which he has co-authored a leading casebook. A respected teacher, a devoted mentor, and an influential scholar, he will retire from the Harvard faculty in June 2020.

About the AALS

The Association of American Law Schools (AALS) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit association of 179 law schools. Its members enroll most of the nation’s law students and produce the majority of the country’s lawyers and judges, as well as many of its lawmakers. The mission of AALS is to uphold and advance excellence in legal education. In support of this mission, AALS promotes the core values of excellence in teaching and scholarship, academic freedom, and diversity, including diversity of backgrounds and viewpoints, while seeking to improve the legal profession, to foster justice, and to serve our many communities–local, national, and international. Founded in 1900, AALS also serves as the learned society for the more than 9,000 law faculty at its member schools, and provides them with extensive professional development opportunities, including the AALS Annual Meeting which draws thousands of professors, deans and administrators.

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Published on May 29, 2019
Author:          Filed under: Developments

The Slovak Party Ban Case in Context: Dialogue between the Supreme and Constitutional Courts

Max Steuer, Comenius University

The failed petition of the Slovak Attorney General to ban the far-right Kotleba: People’s Party Our Slovakia received wide domestic and international coverage. Legal developments in early 2019 that might have influenced the Supreme Court ruling in the case, however, did not attract attention. In January, the Slovak Constitutional Court invalidated several provisions of the Criminal Code meant to increase the efficiency of the prosecution of extreme speech. I will examine this decision to see if it could have constrained the decision-making of Supreme Court judges in the Party Ban Case.

This area of criminal law is among those most prone to politicization given that it is often a component of the official policy against political extremism. Slovakia is the only country in the Visegrad region that has not been criticized for the deterioration of the rule of law, and one where extreme far-right entered the Parliament relatively recently. The legal developments in Slovakia, therefore, provide a good opportunity to study how a democracy challenged by anti-democratic forces employs legal means to respond to the challenge.

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Published on May 28, 2019
Author:          Filed under: Analysis

What’s New in Public Law

–Mohamed Abdelaal, Assistant Professor, Alexandria University Faculty 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

Developments in Constitutional Courts

(1) The US Supreme Court held that the Crow Tribe’s treaty hunting rights did not expire when Wyoming became a state.

(2) The US Supreme Court ruled that a trademark may survive a debtor’s rejection in bankruptcy.

(3) The Constitutional Court of Germany ruled that the ban on broadcasting the Neo-Nazi Party campaing advertisement infringes the right to campaign.

(4) The Thai Constitutional Court is set to decide a case against a political leader regarding media shareholdings violations.

(5) The General Court of the EU rejected an action for compensation against the European Central Bank (ECB) by private investors.

In the News

(1) The Parliament of Taiwan approved a bill legalizing same sex-marriage in the country.

(2) The US administration announced an immigration and border reform proposal.

(3) The lower house of the Irish Parliament rejected a proposal to call a referendum on recognizing the right to housing as a constitutional right.

(4) The Senegalese President ratified a constitutional law abolishing the post of prime minister.

(5) Speaker of the National Assembly of Zimbabwe vowed to renew parliamentary gender quotas.

(6) The US House of Representatives passed the Equality Act that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

New Scholarship

(1) Oona A. Hathaway, A Comparative Foreign Relations Law Agenda: Opportunities and Challenges (2019) (arguing how best to carry out a more comprehensive examination of differences between states in the law governing their engagement in the world around them)

(2) Cheng-Yi Huang, Frozen Trials: Political Victims and Their Quest for Justice in Taiwan, in Jerome A. Cohen, William P. Alford, Chang-fa Lo (eds.), Taiwan and International Human Rights: A Story of Transformation (forthcoming 2019) (analyzing the critical shortcomings and potential benefits of Taiwan’s model of transitional justice)

(3) Vincenzo Zeno-Zencovich, Comparative Legal Systems: A Short and Illustrated Introduction, 5 L’Unità del diritto (2019) (providing an introduction to comparative law and comparative legal systems)

(4) Monika Zalnieriute, Lyria Bennett Moses and George Williams, The Rule of Law and Automation of Government Decision‐Making, 82 The Modern Law Review (2019) (exploring the tension between the rule of law and rapid technological change and concludes with observations on how the automation of government decision‐making can both enhance and detract from rule of law values)

(5) John Vlahoplus, Evaluating Originalism: Commerce and Emoluments, St. John’s Law Review (forthcoming 2019) (examining originalism and notable originalist interpretations of the Constitution’s Commerce and Emoluments Clauses in light of the novel and traditional English interpretive methods)

(6) Khaled Beydoun and Cyra Akila Choudhury, Islamophobia and the Law: Introduction, in Cyra Akila Choudhury & Khaled A. Beydoun, Islamophobia and the Law (forthcoming 2019) (providing a brief history of the rise of the concept of Islamophobia and legal definition for it)

(7) Nupur Chowdhury, Privacy and Citizenship in India, 11 NUJS Law Review (2018) (conceptualizing the relationship between state-citizen-intermediaries into relationship typologies in order to better appreciate the cumulative impact of these relationships and also help understand the commissions and omissions of the State in relation to data protection)

(8) Kevin Crow, International Law and Corporate Participation in Times of Armed Conflict, 37 Berkeley Journal of International Law (2019) (exploring the overlapping conceptions of “international legal personhood” in international criminal law and international investment law in light of the December 2016 ICSID Award in Urbaser v. Argentina)

(9) Han-Ru Zhou, The Continuing Significance of Dr Bonham’s Case, in Paul Daly (ed.), Apex Courts and the Common Law (2019) (re-examining the historical—or historically assumed—relationship between Dr Bonham’s Case and modern judicial review of legislation)

Calls for Papers and Announcements

(1) The European Society of International Law (ESIL) organizes its second joint symposium in collaboration with the Court of Justice of the European Union. The symposium will be held in Luxembourg, on June 14, 2019, on the theme “Adjudicating the International Responsibility of the EU.”

(2) The University of Utrecht invites application to three of its 2019 International Law Summer Courses.

(3) The Faculty of Legal and Social Sciences, the Law Program of the University of Caldas, the Advisory Committee of the Colombia Chapter of ICON-S and the Organizing Committee of the II ICON-S Colombia Seminar call for proposals for a seminar on the Colombia Chapter of the International Society of Public Law ICON-S.

(4) The Indian Review of Corporate and Commercial Laws (IRCCL) invites submissions for its upcoming issue.

(5) The Indian Journal of Constitutional Studies invites submissions for its upcoming volume.

(6) The American Journal of Legal History invites applications for the position of  a new co-Editor-in-Chief.

(7) The Italian Journal of Public Law (IJPL) organizes a symposium on the theme “The Rule of Law,” to be held on May 30-31, 2019, at the University of Milan.

Elsewhere online

(1) Adam Liptak, Keith Whittington, and Jeffrey Rosen, Are we in a Constitutional Crisis?, Constitution Center

(2) Jedediah Britton-Purdy, A Trumpist Constitution?, Dissent

(3) Robert Natelson, The Supreme Court Just Applied Originalism to an 1855 Treaty, So Why Not to the Constitution?, The Daily Caller

(4) Brian Christopher Jones, How the US Constitution Failed to Restrain Donald Trump, The Conversation

(5) Julie Zerbo, The Supreme Court’s Decision in Mission Product Holdings is Significant for the Bankruptcy-Prone Fashion Industry, The Fashion Law

(6) David R. Cameron, With Tory voters defecting in droves to Brexit party and time running out on her leadership, Theresa May proposes “new Brexit deal” before one last vote, Yale MacMillan Center

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Published on May 27, 2019
Author:          Filed under: Developments

What’s New in Public Law

Sandeep Suresh, Faculty Member, Jindal Global Law School, India

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

Developments in Constitutional Courts

  1. The Constitutional Court of Germany found that a regional public broadcaster must air campaign advertisements of the far-right National Democratic Party for European elections. The Court held that there was no evidence to prove that the content of the advertisement was racially motivated and amounted to hate speech.
  2. The Supreme Court of India upheld the constitutionality of a legislation passed by Karnataka state that granted reservation for promotions of government staff members who fall in the category of scheduled caste and scheduled tribes.
  3. The UK Supreme Court held that decisions of the Investigatory Powers Tribunal are subject to judicial review in the High Court based on its supervisory jurisdiction over lower courts and tribunals.
  4. The Supreme Court of Canada will conduct a sitting in the Manitoba Court of Appeals, Winnipeg, in September 2019. This will be the first sitting of the Supreme Court outside Ottawa.
  5. The Constitutional Court of Guatemala ruled that Thelma Aldana, former Attorney General with a strong anti-corruption agenda, cannot run for the presidential election in June 2019.

In the News

  1. For the first time in its history, the Ukrainian Constitutional Court confirmed the early dismissal of a sitting Chairperson of the court,  Judge Stanislav Shevchuk, for gross neglect of duties.
  2. Justice Madan Lokur, former judge of the Indian Supreme Court, was appointed to the Fiji Supreme Court’s non-resident panel.
  3. Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu proposed a law that would extensively limit the Supreme Court’s judicial review powers.
  4. A court in Northern Cyprus acquitted two journalists who were accused of defaming Turkish President Erdogan by circulating a cartoon that portrayed a Greek statute urinating on Erdogan’s head.
  5. Senegal adopted a constitutional amendment to abolish the post of Prime Minister and make the country’s governance system fully presidential.
  6. The Parliament of Taiwan passed a law that legalizes same-sex marriage. This move comes after the decision of the Constitutional Court in 2017 regarding the same.

New Scholarship

  1. Jordan Perkins, Thinking Institutionally About Judicial Review: Originalism, Judicial Supremacy, and the Concept of Law (2019) (examining the origin and interpretation of originalism as a judicial philosophy in America)
  2. Juan C. Herrera, Judicial Dialogue and Transformative Constitutionalism in Latin America: The Case of Indigenous Peoples and Afro-descendants, Revista Derecho del Estado (2019) (describing the transformative nature of jurisprudence of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and the Constitutional Court of Colombia on rights of indigenous peoples and afro-descendants)
  3. Mario Iannella, Balanced Budget Objectives and the Role of Executives: The cases of Italy, Spain and US states, Rivista AIC (2019) (arguing that the introduction of balanced budget objective and vertical integration of national and supranational levels after the financial crisis to increase the role of the executive)
  4. Matteo Laruffa, The Institutional Defenses of Democracy, Democrazia e Diritto (2018) (assessing the institutional defenses in democracies to fight against political pressure)
  5. Stuart Wallace, The Application of the European Convention on Human Rights to Military Operations (2019) (examining the challenges to the integrity and universality of rights under the European Convention on Human Rights at the time when the Convention is increasingly applied to military operations)
  6. Tom Flynn, The Triangular Constitution: Constitutional Pluralism in Ireland, the EU and the ECHR (2019) (using the case of Ireland to demonstrate a national constitution can no longer be understood on its own, in isolation from the EU legal order or the European Convention on Human Rights)

Call for Papers and Announcements

  1. The Colombia Chapter of ICON-S invites submissions for its conference at the Universidad de Caldas in Manizales, Colombia, on October 24-25, 2019.
  2. The Indonesian Constitutional Court invites paper submissions for its 3rd International Symposium on “Constitutional Court and Protection of Social and Economic Rights,” which will be held in Bali, on November 4-8, 2019. Interested participants must submit full-length papers (8000-10,000 words) by August 18, 2019. Selected articles from the Symposium will be published in the special issue of the Court’s academic publication – Constitutional Review Journal.
  3. The Laureate Program in Comparative Constitutional Law, at Melbourne Law School invites applications from junior scholars, post-doctoral fellows, and leading senior scholars for the “Melbourne Institute of Comparative Constitutional Law,” which will meet on December 9-11, 2019. The initiative aims to develop the study of comparative constitutional law through exchange between leading and emerging scholars in the field. The deadline for applications is August 11, 2019.
  4. The Democratic Decay Resource (DEM-DEC), which has been renamed Democratic Decay & Renewal (DEM-DEC), released its tenth Global Research Update on democratic decay (May 2019 – available here), containing new research worldwide from April and early May 2019; items suggested by DEM-DEC users; a rapidly expanding list of forthcoming research; and a list of new resources added to the Links section. A post introducing the Update will be published on the IACL-AIDC Blog on Monday 20 April, and will shortly be published on Verfassungsblog.
  5. The Forum Transregionale Studien and Democracy Reporting International invite applications for fellowships on “re:constitution: Exchange and Analysis on Democracy and the Rule of Law in Europe.” This paid fellowship is aimed at young scholars of constitutional law from EU member states and will last from October 1, 2019, until July 31, 2020. Interested participants should apply by June 1, 2019.
  6. The University of Bologna, King’s College, London, and the University of Strasbourg invite applications for the 19th edition of the Summer School on “The Protection of Fundamental Rights in Europe,” which will be held in Bertinoro, on June 23-28, 2019. The deadline for applications is June 12, 2019.
  7. Loyola University Chicago School of Law invites submissions for its 10th Annual Constitutional Law Colloquium, to be held on November 8-9, 2019. The deadline for the submission of abstracts is June 21, 2019.

Elsewhere Online

  1. Dushyant Dave, Collegium – Thy name is Reciprocity, Bar & Bench
  2. Yaniv Roznai, Constitutional Paternalism: The Israeli Supreme Court as Guardian of the Knesset, IACL-AIDC Blog
  3. Idris Fassassi, France: The Yellow Vests, the Right to Protest and the Conseil Constitutionnel, ConstitutionNet
  4. Dominika Bychawska-Siniarska, Offence Intended – Virgin Mary With a Rainbow Halo as Freedom of Expression, Verfassungsblog
  5. B Aloka Wanigasuriya, Ten Years Later: Seeking Justice for Wartime Atrocities in Sri Lanka, Justice in Conflict
  6. Gautam Bhatia, The Supreme Court and Memes, Indian Constitutional Law and Philosophy
  7. Paolo Cavaliere, Facebook, defamation and free speech: a pending CJEU case, EU Law Analysis
  8. Ronan Ó Fathaigh and Dirk Voorhoof, Kablis v. Russia: prior restraint of online campaigning for a peaceful, but unauthorised demonstration violated Article 10 ECHR, Strasbourg Observers
  9. Brian Christopher Jones, How the US Constitution Failed to Restrain Donald Trump, The Conversation
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Published on May 20, 2019
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Call for Papers–Football Feminism–Global Governance Perspectives

The Symposium

The Jean Monnet Center for International and Regional Economic Law and Justice at NYU School of Law will host a symposium on February 24 – 25, 2020 to explore feminist perspectives on global football (soccer) governance and the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA).

Last year, FIFA launched a Women’s Football Strategy to “empower the organisation to take further concrete steps to address the historic shortfalls in resources and representation, while advocating for a global stand against gender discrimination through playing football.” This plan for institutional reform, along with the 2019 Women’s World Cup, offers an opportune moment to think critically about the future of world football from various feminist perspectives. The Symposium therefore seeks to explore the system of governance that regulates football around the globe through the lens of gender and to consider what it would mean for global football governance to be feminist.

Women and girls have been playing and otherwise participating in organized football since at least the late 19th century, before the 1904 establishment of FIFA as the sole recognized international governing body for the ‘beautiful game’. However, FIFA did not officially hold a Women’s World Cup until 1991 and did not elect a woman to its Executive Committee (as it then was) until 2012. In other words, football under the auspices of FIFA has long been a male-dominated sphere, into which women have only recently begun to gain formal entry – first as athletes and then as executives. The longstanding gendered nature of global football governance is therefore easily perceptible.

The Symposium will aim to illuminate and nuance the relationship between gender and power within the transnational regulatory system that governs football (with FIFA at its helm); to identify specific gendered implications of existing governance structures, rules and procedures; and to consider innovative ideas for feminist reform or revolution. Approaches may be explicitly feminist – of any strand (e.g. radical, intersectional, postcolonial) or theoretical orientation (e.g. historical institutionalism, critical legal theory) – or they may simply use gender as a mode or lens of analysis, including in connection with race, sexuality, nationality, geography, religion, class, etc. The commonality across approaches will be the critical evaluation of a politically, economically and culturally powerful global governance regime from the perspective of gender.

Submissions may address any aspect of the governance of the women’s game, the men’s game or both. Likewise, they may focus on the role of any actor(s) within the global football governance regime (e.g. FIFA and its various internal bodies, regional confederations, national associations, clubs, leagues, host countries, sponsors, broadcasters, players, coaches) or the relations between them. Papers may tackle questions of gender and governance related to, for example:

  • Representation in football executive leadership, coaching and officiating
  • Investment in, promotion of, and opportunities and rewards for women’s teams and players
  • Professionalization, commercialization and corruption of football
  • Public and private influences on global football governance (e.g. national governments, corporations, civil society organizations)
  • Sexual harassment and abuse, gender-based violence and homophobia in football or committed outside football by members of the ‘football family’
  • FIFA development programs or football-related migration
  • Real or potential resolution of gender discrimination claims by FIFA, national or regional courts, the Court of Arbitration for Sport or other (quasi)judicial fora
  • Experiences of fans, journalists and other football stakeholders
  • Repercussions of mega-event hosting and other local impacts of global football
  • Gender-based categorization of football competition
  • Reimagining of women’s (or non-binary) football on its own terms (without/outside FIFA)

In sum, the Symposium will endeavour to take stock of the development of the global football governance regime, to critically evaluate its present state, and to consider potential reforms or reimaginations of the system – all from a variety of feminist or gendered perspectives.

The Symposium will feature presentations by the authors of selected papers, followed by comments from designated panels of experts, including both scholars and practitioners in the field. The Symposium will be open to the public and participation will be welcomed from all in attendance. Following the Symposium, featured papers will be published as described below.

The Submission Process

Both established and early-career legal scholars (including graduate students) are invited to submit proposals to present papers addressing the symposium theme.

Anyone wishing to offer a paper should submit a working title and an abstract of no more than 300 words, along with a one-page CV, by email to by July 15, 2019.

The selection of abstracts will be communicated by August 1, 2019.

Each selected author will then be asked to submit a pre-paper of 2,000 to 3,000 words by November 1, 2019, on the basis of which the final selection will be made. Selected authors will be eligible for a travel and accommodation grant of up to $750 in order to attend the Symposium.

The Symposium will take place on February 24 – 25, 2020 and will function as a workshop: draft papers of approximately 6,000 words will be presented and commented upon. The aim of this format is to provide important input to authors to assist in the elaboration of their final papers. Final papers of up to 10,000 words will be published in the Jean Monnet Working Paper Series of NYU and will also be considered for publication in an edited volume by a major publisher. In addition, a selection of papers will be considered for inclusion in a European Journal of International Law (EJIL) symposium.

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Published on May 17, 2019
Author:          Filed under: Developments

Slovakia Amends the Constitution to Cap the Retirement Age

Simon Drugda, PhD Candidate at the University of Copenhagen

On March 28, 2019, the Slovak Parliament amended the Constitution to cap the retirement age at 64. The imposition of retirement age is quite an unusual design feature in comparative constitutional law. In this post, I introduce the amendment and provide context for the change.

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Published on May 16, 2019
Author:          Filed under: Developments

I·CON Volume 17, Issue 1: Editorial

We invited Michaela Hailbronner, I•CON’s Book Review Editor, to contribute a Guest Editorial.

Es kommen härtere Tage–Rough days are coming[1]

In the summer of 2015, Isabel Feichtner, my predecessor as Book Review Editor at I•CON, wrote a powerful editorial for the European Journal of International Law.[2] Isabel was protesting the utter lack of solidarity with member states like Greece shown during the handling of the European financial crisis. She called for resistance, arguing that we should use law and legal analysis in a critical manner to understand and challenge this kind of injustice. I agree, then and now. Since 2015, however, things have happened, mostly not good. More than ever it is important to understand what is going on, to work out responses, and to connect to broader public debates, as Rosalind Dixon argued in our last editorial.[3] Many of us are already engaged in this enterprise. But I believe we also have to think harder and more carefully not just about what we criticize but about how we do it—and whether and when we do it, with an eye to the broader picture. We need to address issues of strategy, framing, and honesty. This is an awkward argument to make for anyone below 40 such as myself (and in thinking about it I have contrived to feel, simultaneously, both old and not old enough). But I believe it needs to be made.

Start with strategy. Although much of the contemporary literature focuses on questions of institutional design rather than strategy, we all know the arguments about judges and strategic behavior. In real life, applying the law “without fear, favor or prejudice” is easier said than done. Smear campaigns against particular judges have become part of the Hungarian government’s arsenal in recent times and the Turkish government has not shied away from arresting and jailing judges. In the face of this, backbone matters. But, the argument has long gone, so does strategy. Judges in difficult situations may need to think consciously about which battles to fight, and how to fight them—with the implication that they might not fight every battle they plausibly could, or as loudly as they might if they were not also thinking of the bigger picture. If they are to resist assaults on human rights or democracy, their public standing and the support of civil society actors will be crucial, and they may need to be conscious of this, too. The duty to be scrupulous in appearances matters all the more when the institution is subject to attack. This general imperative to mind the institution can certainly be in tension with the duty to act in particular cases, or with the impulse to do so, but it is not an imperative easily dismissed, come the crunch. And dealing with it, too, takes backbone.

We are familiar with this when it comes to judges—but what about ourselves as academics? Are we immune from these duties?

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Published on May 14, 2019
Author:          Filed under: Editorials

What’s New in Public Law

Maja Sahadžić, Ph.D. Researcher, University of Antwerp

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

Developments in Constitutional Courts

  1. The Constitutional Court of Croatia asks the Ministry of Labour and Pension System to explain the financing of an advertising campaign on the comprehensive pension reform, which the unions and opposition claim was directed against the “67 is too much” referendum initiative.
  2. The Constitutional Court of Hungary ruled in favor of a broad interpretation of signature gathering in the European Parliament elections.
  3. The Constitutional Court of Jamaica struck down the mandatory biometric National Identification and Registration Act and the National Identification and Registration System, ruling that it violates constitutional privacy protections.
  4. The Supreme Court of Mexico granted a new birth certificate to reflect the correct gender and name of a transgender citizen.
  5. The Supreme Court of Israel ordered the Prime Minister to allow Palestinians from the West Bank to enter Israel and attend a joint Israeli-Palestinian Memorial Day ceremony.
  6. The Constitutional Court of Thailand ruled unanimously that election law on detailed list-MP calculation is constitutional.
  7. The Constitutional Court of South Korea declared that the current abortion law is inconsistent with the Constitution and has requested a revision.
  8. The Constitutional Court of Bulgaria struck down a higher tax rate on resort properties.
  9. The Supreme Court of Spain ruled that the former president of Catalonia can run in the upcoming European Parliament elections.
  10. The Constitutional Court of Turkey ruled that arrests of two journalists in the case known as “Fethullahist Terrorist Organization Media Case” violated their rights, but at the same time found no rights violation in the case of five remaining journalists.

In the News

  1. The National Dialogue Forum in Zambia rejected a proposal to merge the Supreme Court and Constitutional Court.
  2. The new Emperor of Japan Naruhito pledged to fulfil his role as a “symbol of the state and unity,” in his first public address since taking the throne.
  3. The Parliament of Taiwan will vote on a gay marriage bill to comply with a Constitutional Court ruling from 2017 that prompted Parliament to guarantee same-sex unions within two years.
  4. The anticorruption referendum in Romania is scheduled for the same day as the European Union elections.
  5. The Parliament of Romania validated the appointment of two judges to the Constitutional Court, who were nominated by the largest government-party.
  6. The Constitutional Court of Columbia meets outside of its premises as the judges believe their phones and offices are bugged.
  7. The former president of Peru and his wife go to trial and face sentences of over 20 years for money laundering and the crime of concealment.
  8. The President of the  Venezuelan Supreme Court rebuffed threats by the US government to sanction members of the Court for the support of President Nicolas Maduro. The US Treasury Department first imposed sanctions on Moreno and seven other members of the Court’s Constitutional Chamber in 2017.
  9. The President of Ukraine appointed 75 new Supreme Court judges, including 15 who had been vetoed by the Public Integrity Council over violations of professional ethics and integrity standards.

New Scholarship

  1. Wojciech Sadurski, Poland’s Constitutional Breakdown (2019) (exploring the reasons behind antidemocratic movements in Poland since 2015 and the prospects for a return to liberal democracy)
  2. Ute Lettanie, Consultations and the ECB as prudential regulator: enhancing legitimacy?, Journal of Economic Policy Reform (2019) (examining whether ECB consultations, imposed by the Single Supervisory Mechanism Regulation, enhance legitimacy in terms of openness, transparency, inclusiveness, efficacy and judicial accountability)
  3. Han Zhu, Beijing’s “Rule of Law” Strategy for Governing Hong Kong, Chinese Perspectives (2019) (examining the evolution of legal strategies that the central government in  has used in managing Hong Kong affairs in the past three decades)
  4. Jorge M. Farinacci-Fernós, Post-Liberal Constitutionalism, Tulsa Law Review (2018) (discussing the inner workings of post-liberal constitutions in contrast with their liberal-democratic counterparts and offering a critical analysis of how the concept of constitutionalism encompasses both liberal and post-liberal constitutions)
  5. Ranieri L. Resende, Deliberation and Decision-Making Process in the Inter-American Court of Human Rights: Do Individual Opinions Matter?, Northwestern Journal of Human Rights (2019) (focusing on the adjudicatory nature of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and investigating its model of deliberation, considering three basic schemes of per curiam, seriatim and hybrid opinions)
  6. Josephine De Jaegere, Judicial review and strategic behaviour (2019) (exploring the extent to which the Constitutional Court of Belgium performs as a deliberative institution while operating within a consensual political system)
  7. Matt Qvortrup, The Referendum and Other Essays on Constitutional Politics (2019) (looking at the historical development of the referendum, its use in different jurisdictions, and the types of constitutional questions it seeks to address)
  8. Kevin YL Tan and Ngoc Son Bui (eds.), Constitutional Foundings in Southeast Asia (2019) (examining on the making, nature, and role of the first modern constitutions at the founding of the modern nation-states in Southeast Asia)
  9. Anneli Albi and Samo Bardutzky (eds.), National Constitutions in European and Global Governance: Democracy, Rights, the Rule of Law (2019) (reassessing the role of national constitutions from twenty-nine European countries at a time when decision-making has increasingly shifted to the European and transnational level)

Calls for Papers and Announcements

  1. The Institute for Comparative Federalism at EURAC invites applications for the Federal Scholar in Residence Program. The deadline for submissions is 1 July 2019.
  2. The Research Group on Constitutional Responses to Terrorism established within the International Association of Constitutional Law organizes its Annual Workshop on “Counter-Terrorism at the Crossroad between International, Regional and Domestic Law,” in Milan on 13-14 June 2019.
  3. The Asian Journal of Comparative Law invites submissions for its 2019 and 2020 issues. The submissions are ongoing.
  4. The Faculty of Law of the National Research University Higher School of Economics, and PluriCourts Center invite paper proposals for a conference on “Jurisdictional Immunities of States and Their Property: Emergence of New International Customary Law Rules – by Whom?” The deadline for submissions is 1 July 2019.
  5. The Faculty of Law, Economics and Governance at Utrecht University welcomes applications for the summer school on “Law and Sustainability,” to be held in Utrecht, on 26-30 August 2019. The deadline for applications is 12 August 2019.
  6. The American Society of Comparative Law invites proposals for its Annual Meeting on the theme “Comparative Law and International Dispute Resolution Processes,” to be held in Columbia, on 17-19 October 2019. The deadline for submissions is 20 May 2019.
  7. Claremont McKenna College and the Society for Empirical Legal Studies invite submissions for the 14th Annual Conference on Empirical Legal Studies, to be held on 15-16 November 2019, in California. The deadline for paper submissions is 21 June 2019.
  8. Kuwait International Law School invites applications for the position of a professor in constitutional law. The appointee will have a visiting status for the first two semesters, with a view to permanent appointment thereafter. Applicants should send a letter of interest and a curriculum vitae to Professor Yousri El-Assar at

Elsewhere Online

  1. Adriano Dirri, European values, rules and European goal(s): The Political Landscape of the EU Elections, Eureka!
  2. Francesco Palermo, Perspectives on comparative federalism, 50 Shades of Federalism
  3. Klaus Detterbeck, Political Parties: Driving Federal Dynamics, adapting to Federal Structures, 50 Shades of Federalism
  4. Eugénie Mérieau, The Thai Constitutional Court, a Major Threat to Thai Democracy, IACL-AIDC BLOG
  5. Mark Elliott and Stephen Tierney, House of Lords Constitution Committee reports on Parliamentary Scrutiny of Treaties, Public Law for Everyone
  6. António Fernandes de Oliveira and Mónica Respício Gonçalves, Constitutional Court decisions reassure corporate taxpayers, International Law Office
  7. Shawn W. Crispin, Prayut 2.0 may not last long in Thailand, Asia Times
  8. Linda Greenhouse, The Supreme Court, the Census Case and the Truth, Will the justices be the administration’s enablers or form a firewall against its lies?, The New York Times
  9. Ock Hyun-ju, Liberal Constitutional Court triggers hopes, concerns, The Korea Herald
  10. Park Chan-kyong, South Korean women hope for law change as constitutional court weighs in on abortion ban, South China Morning Post
  11. Isabel Linzer, Benin’s unrest reflects a broader worrying trend in West Africa, African Arguments
  12. Ella Tenant, Japan: a new emperor and a new era – but women are still excluded from the Chrysanthemum Throne, The Conversation
  13. Stephen Sawchuk, What Are Students’ Constitutional Rights?, Education Week
  14. Alina Cherviatsova, Ze-Situation: A Constitutional Law Perspective on Ukraine’s Elections and What is Coming Next, Verfassungsblog
  15. Bertil Emrah Oder, Independent Journalism v. Political Courts: The Cumhuriyet Trial in Turkey and Strasbourg, Verfassungsblog
  16. Maximilian Steinbeis, After Defeat, Verfassungsblog
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Published on May 13, 2019
Author:          Filed under: Developments

An Obituary for Ernst-Wolfgang Böckenförde (1930-2019)

Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this obituary was first featured on Oxford Constitutional Law on April 10, 2019. We are grateful to Oxford and the authors for permitting us to share these reflections with our readers.

–Mirjam Künkler and Tine Stein

One of Europe’s foremost legal and political thinkers passed away on February 24, 2019. Ernst-Wolfgang Böckenförde was more than a scholar of constitutional law: he was a regular commentator on public affairs, an outstanding legal historian, and a decisive voice on Germany’s constitutional court at which he served from December 1983 until May 1996. He held appointments as professor of Public Law, Constitutional History, and Philosophy of Law at the Universities of Heidelberg (1964-69), Bielefeld (1969-1977) and Freiburg (1977-1995). Böckenförde’s writings on constitutional law have become classics in German legal training, ranging from contributions in legal and political theory, the history of ideas and European constitutional history, to the conceptual framework of the modern state, and engagements with thorny political and ethical issues including the deployment of nuclear missiles and the ethics of genetic engineering. As a judge on Germany’s Federal Constitutional Court, Böckenförde authored one of the highest numbers of dissenting opinions in the court’s history, two of which, remarkably, became the basis for later majority decisions. His interventions as a scholar and a judge have shaped not only academic but also wider public debates from the 1950s to the present, to an extent that only few European scholars can match.

Read the rest of this entry…
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Published on May 11, 2019
Author:          Filed under: Developments

ICON’s Current Issue (Table of Contents)

Volume 17 Issue 1

Table of Contents


Afterword: Doreen Lustig and J. H. H. Weiler and their critics

Mila Versteeg, Understanding the third wave of judicial review: Afterword to the Foreword by Doreen Lustig and J. H. H. Weiler

Julio Ríos-Figueroa, Judicial Review and Democratic Resilience: Afterword to the Foreword by Doreen Lustig and J.H.H. Weiler

Başak Çalı, On Einsteinian Waves, International Law and National Hats: Afterword to the Foreword by Doreen Lustig and J.H.H. Weiler

Wen-Chen Chang, Asian exceptionalism? Reflections on “Judicial Review in the Contemporary World”: Afterword to the foreword by Doreen Lustig and J. H. H. Weiler

Doreen Lustig and J.H.H. Weiler, Judicial Review in the Contemporary World—Retrospective and Prospective: A Rejoinder


Ronald Janse, Is the European Commission a credible guardian of the values? A revisionist account of the Copenhagen political criteria during the Big Bang enlargement

George Duke, Sovereignty and the common good

Adem Kassie Abebe, Taming regressive constitutional amendments: The African Court as a continental (super) Constitutional Court 

Critical Review of Governance

Tom Ruys, Luca Ferro and Tim Haesebrouck, Parliamentary war powers and the role of international law in foreign troop deployment decisions: The US-led coalition against “Islamic State” in Iraq and Syria

Assefa Fiseha, Federalism, development and the changing political dynamics in Ethiopia

Gloria Loo Jing Xi, ASEAN and Janus-faced constitutionalism: The Indonesian case

Hao Duy Phan, The effects of ASEAN treaties in domestic legal orders: Evidence from Vietnam

Critical Review of Jurisprudence

Alain Zysset, Freedom of expression, the right to vote, and proportionality at the European Court of Human Rights: An internal critique

I.CON: Debate!

Björn Ahl, Judicialization in authoritarian regimes: The expansion of powers of the Chinese Supreme People’s Court

Yan Lin, Judicialization in authoritarian regimes: A reply to Björn Ahl

I.CON: Debate!

Tom Hickey, The republican core of the case for judicial review

Richard Bellamy, The republican core of the case for judicial review: A reply to Tom Hickey. Why political constitutionalism requires equality of power and weak review

Tom Hickey, The republican core of the case for judicial review: A rejoinder to Richard Bellamy

Review Essays

Athanasios Psygkas, Celebrating Canada’s sesquicentennial: Lessons from and for the world. Review of Peter Oliver, Patrick Macklem, & Nathalie Des Rosiers, eds. The Oxford Handbook of the Canadian Constitution; Richard Albert & David R. Cameron, eds. Canada in the World: Comparative Perspectives on the Canadian Constitution

Tarunabh Khaitan, Executive aggrandizement in established democracies: A crisis of liberal democratic constitutionalism. Review of Mark Graber, Sanford Levinson, & Mark Tushnet eds., Constitutional Democracy in Crisis?

Book Reviews

Nimer Sultany. Law and Revolution. Legitimacy and Constitutionalism after the Arab Spring (Nathan Brown)

Lauri Mälksoo & Wolfgang Benedek, eds. Russia and the European Court of Human Rights: The Strasbourg Effect (Başak Çalı)

Liav Orgad. The Cultural Defense of Nations. A Liberal Theory of Majority Rights (Pietro Faraguna)

Armin von Bogdandy, Eduardo Ferrer Mac-Gregor, Mariela Morales Antoniazzi, & Flavia Piovesan, eds. Transformative Constitutionalism in Latin America: The Emergence of a New Ius Commune (Diego Werneck Arguelhes)

Weitseng Chen, ed. The Beijing Consensus? How China Has Changed Western Ideas of Law and Economic Development (Han Liu)

Janet Halley, Prabha Kotiswaran, Rachel Rebouché, & Hila Shamir. Governance Feminism: An Introduction (Isabel Lischewski)

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Published on May 10, 2019
Author:          Filed under: Editorials