Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law

What’s New in Public Law

–Susan Achury, Visiting Lecturer, Texas Christian University

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 Colombia ruled unconstitutional virtual sessions of Congress.
  2. The Court of Appeal of Singapore ruled that there is a constitutional right to vote, but that this right had not been violated by a decision to hold a general election during the COVID-19 crisis.
  3. The US Supreme Court ruled that the eastern half of Oklahoma can be considered Native American territory. Oklahoma must honor a treaty from nearly two centuries ago, setting aside this land for Native peoples.
  4. The US Supreme Court ruled that the President is not immune from a New York prosecutor’s subpoena for his tax return.
  5. The US Supreme Court ruled limiting the scope of Congress’ power to subpoena information from the President.
  6. The US Supreme Court ruled that Catholic schools cannot be sued for employment discrimination.
  7. The Constitutional Court of Spain ruled unconstitutional the regulation on instalment payments of corporate income tax.
  8. In Latvia, the Constitutional Court ruled that benefits for invalids and pensioners are inappropriate.

In the News

  1. Harvard and MIT file lawsuit to stop Trump policy prohibiting international students from staying in the US if schools go online.
  2. Guatemala’s Constitutional Court is under attack. In Guatemala, Congress and Supreme Court launched dubious proceedings to remove and potentially prosecute four judges from the Constitutional Court for alleged abuse of authority.
  3. Mali’s President promised to reform the Constitutional Court after a decision over the disputed legislative elections.  
  4. Movement for Black Lives introduces proposed BREATHE Act aiming to divert federal resources from jails and police, invest in other methods of community safety, allot funds to rebuilding communities, and hold law enforcement officials accountable for civil rights violations.
  5. Trump administration had officially moved to formally withdraw the US from the World Health Organization (WHO).

New Scholarship

  1. Charles Ngwena, “What is Africanness?” Contesting nativism in race, culture and sexualities, (2018) (analyzing the concept of nativists to present understanding of Africa as the land of diverse identifications)
  2. Joanna Bell, The Anatomy of Administrative Law (2020) (exploring the nature of the legal structures at play in administrative adjudication)
  3. Alice J. Kang, Miki Caul Kittilson, Valerie Hoekstra, and Maria C. Escobar-Lemmon Diverse and inclusive high courts: a global and intersectional perspective, Politics, Groups, and Identities, (2020) (exploring the attempts at and successes of promoting intersectional inclusion in the context of the high courts of Canada and South Africa)
  4. Andrea Castagnola,  La Trampa de la Manipulación Judicial: Un Análisis Histórico del Control Político de la Suprema Corte Argentina, Revista Uruguaya de Ciencia Política (2020) (identifying the politicians incentives to impede the emergence of a stable and independent judiciary)
  5. David Landau, Personalism and the Trajectories of Populist Constitutions (2020) (reassessing the role of the judiciary in checking populist governments)
  6. Alan Bogg, Jacob Rowbottom, Alison L Young, The Constitution of Social Democracy: Essays in Honour of Keith Ewing (2020) (exploring the development of social democracy and democratic socialism in theory and political practice. It includes sections on the judicial protection of rights, the parliament, democracy, social justice, and the frontiers of social democracy). 
  7. Sergio Muro, Sofia Amaral-Garcia, Alejandro Chehtmana, and Nuno Garoupa, Exploring dissent in the Supreme Court of Argentina, International Review of Law and Economics (2020) (showing different types of dissent based on levels of collegial and effort related costs and how they affect the likelihood of dissent)
  8. Md Jahid Hossain Bhuiyan and Darryn Jensen, Law and Religion in the Liberal State (2020) (examining contemporary problems in the accommodation of religious and secular authority)

Calls for Papers and Announcements

  1. Early registration is now open for a free online seminar on Socialism and Constitutionalism hosted by the International Forum on the Future of Constitutionalism.
  2. The  National Law School of India Review, the flagship law journal of the National Law School of India University, has announced a call for paper for its forthcoming Volume 33, Issue 1. (Due October 30)
  3. Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (IALS) and Westminster Foundation for Democracy (WFD) has issued a call for papers on “Are emergency measures in response to COVID-19 a threat to democracy? Fact and Fiction.” (Due June 30).
  4. Católica Law Review has issued a call for papers on “Public Law in Times of Crisis” for its Volume V, issue 1. (Due September 30)
  5.  The Annals of Health Law and Life Sciences at Loyola University Chicago School of Law has issued a call for papers on “Post-Pandemic Impact on Healthcare Development and Delivery” for publication in our Winter 2020. (Due July 24)
  6. The South Carolina Law Review has issued a call for papers addressing the broad range of topics related to “Taxation, Finance, and Racial Justice.” (Due October 1)
  7. The Oxford Seminars in Jurisprudence has issued a call for papers on topics related to the philosophy of law. (Due August 10)
  8. The International Journal of Discrimination and the Law has issued a call for papers for a special issue entitled “COVID-19: Lessons for and from Vulnerability Theory.” (Due October 31)
  9. The Canadian Legal Education Annual Review (CLEAR), a peer-reviewed annual publication of the Canadian Association of Law Teachers (CALT), has issued a call for papers for its Volume 9. (Due August 15).
  10. The University of New Hampshire Law Review has issued a call for papers on to participate in the Symposium Rights & Responsibilities: Judicial & Legislative Responses to the Covid-19 Pandemic, to be hosted online via ZOOM October 23. (Due September 1)

Elsewhere Online

  1. Donald Bello Hutt and Andrej Kristan, The ghost of the results-oriented constitutional review, Revista Derecho del Estado, Universidad Externado de Colombia.
  2. Diana Carrera and Johanna Fröhlich, Constitutional Identity in Transition? The Case on the Human Rights of the State, IACL-IADC Blog
  3. Carlos Arturo Villagrán Sandoval, A Constitutional Telenovela: The Deepening Constitutional Crisis in Guatemala, IACL-IADC Blog
  4. Grace Iara Souza, Brazil’s indigenous peoples face a triple threat from COVID-19, the dismantling of socio-environmental policies, and international inaction, LSE blog
  5. Catherine Andrews and Ariadna Acevedo Rodrigo, Cien años de arrogancia: por qué el liberalismo ‘occidental’ no salvará a América Latina, LSE blog
  6. Marin Keršić, Voting in Times of a Pandemic: The Case of Croatia: Constitutional Conflict between the Right to Vote and the Protection of Health, Verfassungsblog
  7. Marie-Laure Basilien-Gainche, Ask the Dust, Verfassungsblog


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