Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law

What’s New in Public Law

Angelique DevauxCheuvreux Notaires, Diplômée notaire, LL.M

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 U.S. Supreme Court let stand a lower court’s ruling that police use of a taser amounted to unconstitutional excessive force in a case involving a mentally ill man who died after being stunned with the electrical weapon five times in two minutes.
  2. South Africa’s Constitutional Court refused to hear president Zuma’s appeal against fraud and corruption charges.
  3. Georgia’s Constitutional Court struck down a law that has landed many young people in jail for years for using marijuana.
  4. Zimbabwe’s High Court overturned a two-week ban on protests in the capital following a legal challenge from political activists.
  5. The U.S. District Court in the Northern Marianas ruled that the US$1,000 excise tax on guns is unconstitutional.

In the News 

  1. Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán proposed amending the Constitution to prevent the European Union from settling migrants in Hungary without the approval of Parliament.
  2. Colombians rejected a peace deal to end 52 years of war with FARC.
  3. A query challenging the constitutionality of certain provisions of the law “On Amendments to the Constitution of Ukraine (Regarding Justice)” will be sent to the Constitutional Court of Ukraine in the coming days.
  4. Three judges have been appointed to Georgia’s Constitutional Court after taking the oath of office in Batumi.
  5. The Parliament of Catalonia voted to hold an independence referendum next September.
  6. Following mass protests in Poland, legislators have reversed their positions and rejected a near-complete abortion ban.
  7. Nepal’s government is working towards amending the new Constitution to address the demands of the Madhesi parties.
  8. Morocco’s moderate ruling Islamist party defeated a liberal rival seen as close to the royal palace in parliamentary elections.
  9. The Alabama Supreme Court ruled that the state’s death-penalty system is still constitutional.
  10. The Tennessee Supreme Court heard a case surrounding the constitutionality of protocols surrounding lethal injection, leaving it up to the court to decide whether lethal injection can continue in Tennessee, or whether an alternative needs to be found regarding the death penalty.

New Scholarship

  1. Engy Abdelkader, A comparative Analysis of European Islamophobia: France, UK, Germany, Netherlands and Sweden, UCLA Journal of Islamic and Near Eastern Law (forthcoming 2016) (engaging in a descriptive, normative and comparative analysis of contemporary religious freedom challenges, measured by official restrictions and social hostilities, confronting Muslim minority communities in five European countries including, France, United Kingdom, Germany, Netherlands and Sweden)
  2. Jordan Cash, Book Review of James Madison and Constitutional Imperfection by Jeremy D. Bailey (2016) (reviewing Jeremy D. Bailey’s important contribution to the study of James Madison’s political theory)
  3. Paul P. Craig, Judicial Review of Questions of Law: A Comparative Perspective, in Comparative Administrative Law, Susan Rose Ackerman and Peter Lindseth (eds.) (forthcoming) (analyzing judicial review in the UK, USA, Canada, and the EU)
  4. Sionaidh Douglas-Scott, Brexit, Article 50 and the Contested British Constitution, Modern Law Review (forthcoming) (discussing the early stages of the Art 50 TEU process and those aspects that relate to British constitutional law)
  5. Paula Gerber, Cai Wilkinson, Anthony John Langlois, and Baden Offord, Human Rights in Papua New Guinea: Is this Where We Should Be Settling Refugees?, Australian Journal of Human Rights (2016)(providing insight into the human rights situation in Papua New Guinea and making recommendations regarding the prospect of resettling refugees in that country)
  6. Joseph Magnet, Daniels v. Canada: Origins, Intentions, Futures, Ottawa Faculty of Law Working Paper No. 2016-38(2016) (explaining the history which made litigation necessary to resolve a range of issues between Canada and representatives of Métis and Non-Status Indians)
  7. Mariana Pargendler, The Role of the State in Contract Law: The Common-Civil Law Divide (2016) (comparing contract law between the common law system and the civil law system)
  8. Alice Ristroph, The Constitution of Police Violence, UCLA Law Review (forthcoming 2017) (examining police violence and tracing resistance and compliance in order to reveal the ways in which the law distributes risks of violence)
  9. Anna Śledzińska-Simon, Is there a place for the Islamic veil in the workplace? Managerial prerogatives and the duty of reasonable accommodation in the EU anti-discrimination governance, ERA Forum (2016) (analysing whether an employer may justify a ban on religious symbols with the protection of a company’s image or customer preference)
  10. Thiago Luís Santos Sombra, Representation and Deliberation: Does Every Vote Have The Same Influence in The Voting Process Of Associations?, Thurgood Marshall Law Review (2016) (outlining the possibility of giving different weight to the right to vote in civil associations in civil law and common systems)

Calls for Papers and Announcements

  1. The Journal of Intellectual Property, Information Technology and Electronic Commerce Law issued a call for papers on Intermediary Liability as a Human Rights Issue. The abstract deadline is November 30, 2016.
  2. The Wisconsin Journal of Law, Gender and Society issued a call for papers for its symposium entitled “Women in the Boardroom: The Social and Business Arguments that Challenge Executive Board Homogeneity.” The abstract deadline is November 1, 2016.
  3. Scuola Sant’Annais hosting an upcoming conference on the Constitution of Canada on May 24, 2017 in Pisa, Italy. Interested scholars are asked to submit an abstract by December 15, 2016.
  4. The Pepperdine Law Review issued a call for papers for its annual symposium on “The Supreme Court, Politics and Reform” to be held in Malibu, California, on April 8, 2017. The proposal deadline is November 11, 2016.
  5. The Asian Law Institute and the University of Philippines, College of Law issued a call for papers for its 14th Annual ASCLI conference to be held on May 18-19, 2017. The broad theme of the 2017 conference is“Uniting Force? ‘Asian Values’ & the Laws.” The submission deadline is December 1, 2016.
  6. University of California at Los Angeles, the University of Illinois College of Law, Princeton University, and the American Society of Comparative Law issued a call for papers for their Annual Comparative Law Work-in-Progress Workshop, to be held at the UCLA School of Law on April 28-29, 2017. Papers are due by February 1, 2017.
  7. The Law and Humanities Research Center at Panthéon-Assas University issued a call for papers for its first international conference entitled “The Dark Sides of the Law in Common Law Countries” to be held in Paris, France on June 15-17, 2017. The submission deadline is December 15, 2016.

Elsewhere Online

  1. Michael Gilbert, Why Proof of Citizenship Won’t Improve Election Integrity, Jurist
  2. David Gwynn Morgan, Arab Spring in the Kuwaiti Court of Cassation, Constitution Making and Constitutional Change
  3. Jill Goldenziel and Carl Hvenmark, Should Europe Abandon Its Migrant Deal with Turkey?, The National Interest
  4. Darren Harvey, In the Light of the Guidelines: Brexit and the European Council, European Law Blog
  5. Rebecca Macfie, Does New Zealand need a new constitution?, New Zealand Listener
  6. Denis Tanti, Unconstitutional jobs, Times of Malta


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