Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law

What’s New in Public Law

Teodora Miljojkovic, PhD candidate, Central European University, Vienna

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 Supreme Court of the United States heard oral argument in Fulton v. City of Philadelphia, a case challenging the city’s provision that prohibits sexual orientation discrimination by foster care services organizations.
  2. Constitutional Court of Taiwan heard oral arguments on the constitutionality of the law which prescribes an obligatory medical treatment in designated facilities for convicted sex offenders. Article 22-1 of Sexual Assault Crime Prevention Act states that the convicted sex offenders should be subject to mandatory treatment if the medical evaluation shows there is a risk of recidivism. Petitioners challenged the law as disproportional, as it doesn’t set maximum period for the compulsory psychiatric   treatment.
  3. Morocco High Court reviewing Key Western Sahara case of 19 Sahrawi men sentenced to 20 years of prison after violent clashes with the police in 2010.
  4. Guinea’s constitutional court has confirmed President Alpha Conde’s victory in last month’s disputed election, rejected allegations of fraud and confirmed the validity of his third term.
  5. The US Supreme Court Friday ordered Pennsylvania election boards to segregate mail-in ballots arriving after the Election day.

In the News

  1. Joe Biden elected as the 46th President of the United States, together with Kamala Harris as the first female Vice-President in the history of the US.
  2. Poland delays the execution of the Constitutional Court’s abortion ruling in the light of the nationwide protests.
  3. Italy’s Chamber of Deputies passed a bill  that extends anti-discrimination protection to women, disabled people and members of the LGBTQ+ community. The bill remains to be approved by the Senate of the Republic (upper house of Parliament).
  4. Ukrainian politicians still searching for the solution to the national Constitutional Court crisis.
  5. The UK Rights Groups warn that the stop-and-search plans of the Home Office bring risk of perpetual criminalization of previous offenders.
  6. Kosovo’s president resigns to face war crime charges in the Hague.
  7. Georgian ruling party claimed victory in 2020 parliamentary elections.

New Scholarship

  1. Dressel, Björn and Tomoo Inoue, Politics and the Federal Court of Malaysia, 1960–2018: An Empirical Investigation (2020) (providing a first empirical account of judicial behaviour in high profile cases for the Federal Court of Malaysia, 1960-2018)
  2. Sprague, Aleta, Amy Raub, and Jody Heymann, Providing a foundation for decent work and adequate income during health and economic crises: constitutional approaches in 193 countries (2020) (The authors offer systematic analysis of constitutional safeguards of 193 countries for income security, decent working conditions and non-discrimination in the light of COVID-19 pandemic)
  3. Klodian Rado, The Judicial Diplomacy of the Supreme Court of Canada and its Impact: An Empirical Overview (2020), (the author empirically explores the bilateral and multilateral foreign relationships of the Supreme Court of Canada and its impact on Canada’s global reputation and foreign policy)
  4. Ran Hirschl, City, State. Constitutionalism and the Megacity (2020) (the author addresses the major scholarly gap – the constitutional status of megacities. In the light of mitigating the urban/rural divide, the author provides novel arguments for broadening constitutional standing for the metropolis)
  5. Joshua C. Gellers, Rights for Robots: Artificial Intelligence, Animal and Environmental Law (2020), (drawing insights from animal law and environmental law to develop a framework for assessing the extent to which non-humans might qualify for rights)
  6. Alexander Tsesis, Free Speech in the Balance (2020 forthcoming) (The author provides a comprehensive study of proportional analysis in free speech theory)
  7. Kieran Bradley, Agreeing to Disagree: The European Union and the United Kingdom after Brexit (2020), (examining the Withdrawal Agreement from the perspective of the EU legal order)

Calls for Papers and Announcements

  1. The Faculty of Law and the Peter MacKell Chair in Federalism announce the third edition of the Baxter Family Competition on Federalism and call for papers on topic Federalism, Identity and Public Policy in Challenging Times. The competition is open to both law and political science PhD students and the deadline for submission is 1st February 2021.
  2. Barry ACS Student Chapter & Law Review & Texas A&M University of Law invite scholarly proposals for the Sixth Annual Constitutional Law Scholars Forum on any constitutional law topic at any stage before publication.  Email proposals should be sent  to  conference organizers Professor Eang  Ngov,; Professor Helia Hull,; and Professor Meg Penrose, The proposal should contain “ACS Constitutional Law Scholars Forum” in the subject of the e-mail and in the attachment: abstract (300 words maximum), biography (150 words), and key words from the abstract together on a one-page document in Word format. The deadline for submission is December 1st, 2020.
  3. PluriCourts at the University of Oslo invites submissions for the PluriCourts Annual Workshop on the Political and Legal Theory of International Courts and Tribunals 2021: “The Input and Output Legitimacy of International Courts”. The deadline for submission is January 4th 2021.
  4. The University of Chicago Law School seeks a Law and Philosophy Fellow, appointed with the rank of Lecturer. The Fellow will co-teach the Law & Philosophy Workshop with Martha Nussbaum on the theme of “Asian Philosophy and Law,” which will focus on Indian (Buddhist and Hindu) and Chinese philosophy, both ancient and modern, and the ways these give rise to distinctive approaches to political and legal issues. Interested applicants should apply through the University website by January 22th, 2021. 
  5. The Central and Eastern European Chapter of the International Society of Public Law will host a workshop on November 20, 2020, to launch the 2019 I·CONnect-Clough Center Global Review of Constitutional Law. All are welcome to participate. Registration is available here.
  6. Applications are invited for three appointments as Global Academic Fellow in the Department of Law at Hong Kong University, to commence in August 2021 or January 2022, for a period of two years.

Elsewhere Online

  1. Tom Goldstein, The dilemma of the Pennsylvania injunction request, SCOTUSblog
  2. Aleksejs Dimitrovs, Rule of Law Conditionality for the EU budget: agreement is there, EU Law Live
  3. David Kameron, Despite intensified negotiation, EU & UK still divided over level playing field, fisheries, Yale Macmillan Center
  4. Aleksandra Kustra Rogatka, Populist but not Popular. The abortion judgment of the Polish Constitutional Tribunal, Verfassungsblog
  5. Sophie Yeo, Ecocide: Should killing nature be a crime?, BBC Future
  6. Steven Mulroy, Trump’s Pennsylvania lawsuits invoke Bush v. Gore – but the Supreme Court probably won’t decide the 2020 election, The Conversation
  7. Tomer Kenneth, Confronting Misinformation During a Pandemic, Verfassungsblog
  8. Justina Uriburu, Between Elitist Conversations and Local Clusters: How Should we Address English-centrism in International Law?, Opinio Juris


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