Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law

What’s New in Public Law

Maja Sahadžić, Research Fellow, 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 South Africa ruled that sections of the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act are unconstitutional in that they exclude domestic workers employed in private households from the definition of ’employee’.
  2. The Supreme Court of the United Kingdom will rule whether the IS bride Shamima Begum can return to challenge her loss of British citizenship.
  3. The Supreme Court of Papua New Guinea dismissed a legal challenge over the election of Prime Minister last year.
  4. The Supreme Court of India refused to quash the criminal cases against the German car producer Škoda Auto Volkswagen over the alleged use of “cheat devices” in its cars to camouflage the emission of pollution beyond the permissible limits.
  5. The Constitutional Court of Hungary will review a law disallowing transgender individuals from changing their names and genders in official documents.
  6. The Constitutional Court of Romania deferred for a critical ruling on the 40% pension hike.

In the News

  1. The Scottish parliament passed legislation that will make period products freely available to anyone who needs them.
  2. The President of Chile will appeal to the Constitutional Court to halt an opposition measure aimed at allowing citizens to draw down a second installment from their privately held pensions.
  3. The European Union Court of Justice ruled that foreign military draft evaders could be entitled to asylum in the EU.
  4. The Thai parliament voted on constitutional reforms amid protests.
  5. The Swiss federal government asked the Swiss parliament to review a draft of the reform of the occupational pensions law.
  6. The European Parliament condemned Turkey’s actions in Cyprus.
  7. The European Parliament voted to ban the use of lead ammunition in wetlands.
  8. The Japanese Parliament adopted a revision to Japan’s postal law allowing to scrap Saturday and next-day deliveries of ordinary mail.

New Scholarship

  1. Richard Albert, David Landau, Pietro Faraguna, and Šimon Drugda (eds.), I·CONnect-Clough Center 2019 Global Review of Constitutional Law (2020) (offering readers systemic knowledge about jurisdiction-specific constitutional law).
  2. Joseph Marko, What is Wrong with the Concept of Multinational Federalism? Some Thoughts about the Interrelationship between the Concepts of (Multi-)Nationalism, Federalism, Power Sharing and Conflict Resolution 19(4) Ethnopolitics (offering the de-construction of the concept of multinational federalism and the re-conceptualization of a model of multicultural federalism that allows overcoming the theoretical battles in power-sharing literature between so-called accommodationists and integrationists).
  3. Francesco Palermo, The Elephant in the Room: Ukraine between Decentralization and Conflict 19(4) Ethnopolitics (discussing whether the lack of autonomy in Ukraine and not its supposed presence could be one of the reasons for the present difficult situation).
  4. Patricia Popelier, The Constitutional Court’s Impact on Federalism in Belgium: a Weakening of the Centralization, Jahrbuch des Föderalismus 2020 (discussing the influence of the Belgian Constitutional Court on federalism in Belgium).
  5. Giacomo Delledonne, Giuseppe Martinico, Matteo Monti, and Fabio Pacini (eds.), Italian Populism and Constitutional Law, Strategies, Conflicts and Dilemmas (2020) (exploring the relationship between constitutionalism and populism in the Italian context and providing a comprehensive analysis of constitutional issues related to the rise of Italian populism).
  6. Yonatan T. Fessha and Karl Kössler (eds.), Federalism and the Courts in Africa, Design and Impact in Comparative Perspective (2020) (examining the design and impact of courts in African federal systems from a comparative perspective focusing, in particular, on the organization of the judiciary and the appointment of judges in African federal systems and on whether courts have had a centralizing or decentralizing impact on the operation of African federal systems).
  7. Charles M. Fombad and Nico Steytler (eds.), Corruption and Constitutionalism in Africa (2020) (focusing on the critical issue of corruption that lies at the heart of the crisis of constitutionalism in Africa, drawing attention to the problem of corruption, the complexity of the situation, its multi-faceted social, political, economic and legal dimensions, and the need for remedial action).
  8. Andrea Pin, Islam in Italy (2020) (reflecting on the current treatment of Islam and on discriminatory practices that target Muslims in Italy).
  9. Ronan Cormacain and Ittai Bar-Siman-Tov (eds.), Legislatures in the time of Covid-19 8(3) The Theory and Practice of Legislation (2020) (examining how best to regulate the emergency and the medical response and ensure that emergency legislative responses to the Covid-19 crisis do not permanently undermine the democratic constitutional order).

Calls for Papers and Announcements

  1. The University of Milan organizes the webinar „Democracy and rule of law in crisis: National and EU context compared“ to be held online on 4 December 2020 from 14:30 to 17:00 (CET).
  2. The CCTL Transnational Legal History Group of the CUHK LAW and the University of Law – Hue University organize the conference „Asian Legal History“ to be held in Hue on 24-25 July 2021. The deadline for submissions is 15 December 2020.
  3. The Faculty of Law, Canon Law and Administration of the Catholic University of Lublin organizes the conference „AI and transformations of the legal sector“ to be held online on 1 December 2020 from 9:00 to 16:20  (CET). To register, send an email to
  4. The European Consortium for Political Research invites nominations for the ECPR Political Theory Prize. The deadline for nominations is 26 February 2021.
  5. The American Constitution Society for Law and Policy invites scholarly proposals on any constitutional law topic for the Sixth Annual Constitutional Law Scholars Forum to be held in Orlando on 26 March 2021. The deadline for submissions is 1 December 2020.
  6. The University of Catania Law Department hosts the European Society of International Law’s annual Research Forum on 15-16 April 2021. The deadline for registrations is 15 March 2021.

Elsewhere Online

  1. Peter Whoriskey, U.S. report: Much of the world’s chocolate supply relies on more than 1 million child workers, The Washington Post
  2. Michael Rhimes, Intersectionality and equality: a view from the Constitutional Court of South Africa, UK Human Rights Blog
  3. Miriam Kosmehl, Ukraine arrives at a new anti-corruption crossroads, Atlantic Council
  4. Joseph Jaconelli, Constitutional Disqualification, UK Constitutional Law Association Blog
  5. Ulla Liukkunen, Collective bargaining in transition – A renewed role for legal comparison, BACL
  6. Maria Cahill, Does Popular Sovereignty Create Immunity to Populism?, IACL-AIDC Blog
  7. Janet McLean, Referendums on Public Policy Questions: The Case of New Zealand, IACL-AIDC Blog
  8. Nicolò Alessi, Lesbo Island: the EU’s and western legal tradition’s failure, Eureka!
  9. Renáta Uitz, Unbounding the Hungarian Executive and Cementing Illiberal Christian Identity Politics, ConstitutionNet
  10. Nathan de Arriba-Sellier, Another Urgenda in the making, Verfassungsblog
  11. Peter Čuroš and Hans Petter Graver, Dissimilar Similarities, Verfassungsblog


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