Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law

What’s New in Public Law

Mariana Avelar, PhD student at Universidade Federal de Minas Gerais and visiting researcher at Goethe Universität and Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law

Juan Sebastián López, researcher in international human rights law and constitutional law, former student at Universidad Externado de Colombia, and staff member of the International Society of Public 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 Supreme Court of Mexico held that the Congress of Mexico City invaded the exclusive competence of the Congress of the Union to legislate on matters related to the execution of criminal sentences.
  2. The Colombian Constitutional Court ruled that excluding male public servants from shared parental leave benefits is not justified, and argued that the distinction breaches constitutional and conventional rules in relation to non-discrimination of workers, among others.
  3. The Third Chamber of the Second Senate of the German Federal Constitutional Court recently declared inadmissible several referrals from ordinary courts relating to the criminalization of cannabis products.
  4. The Spanish Constitutional Court unanimously decided that the practice of pregnancy interruption in a different autonomous community from the one where the requester has residence violates the fundamental rights of women.
  5.  The French Constitutional Council recently reaffirmed its rulings concerning the regulation of financing of electoral campaigns, deciding afterwards that a candidate was ineligible for the Legislative elections held in June 2022.
  6. The Supreme Court of Mexico ruled that unjustified and discriminatory restrictions imposed on media agencies and news outlets are unconstitutional. In particular, it was held that the Law for Transparency, Prevention and Combat of Improper Practices in the Matter of Advertising Hiring violated the freedom of work, competition, and the principle of non-discrimination.
  7. The Supreme Federal Court of Brazil declared unconstitutional eleven dispositions of the Truck Drivers Law (Law 13.103/2015), referring to working hours, rest breaks and weekly rest. In the same decision, other points of the law were validated, such as the requirement for toxicological examination of professional drivers. 
  8. The Sweden Supreme Court declared the legal possibility of ordering a remote search in cases where such information may be stored abroad.
  9. The Supreme Federal Court of Brazil invalidated several provisions of decrees signed by then-President of the Republic Jair Bolsonaro that relaxed the acquisition, registration, possession, carrying and marketing of firearms and ammunition.

In the News

  1. The International Court of Justice delivered its judgment on the Question of the Delimitation of the Continental Shelf between Nicaragua and Colombia beyond 200 Nautical Miles from the Nicaraguan coast on the 13th of July, ruling that a State’s entitlement to a continental shelf beyond 200 nautical miles from the baselines from which the breadth of its territorial sea is measured may not extend within 200 nautical miles from the baselines of another State
  2. The Inter-American Court of Human Rights adopted provisional measures, ordering the State of Nicaragua to release Rolando José Álvarez Lagos, a religious authority, from detainment and adopt all necessary steps to effectively protect their life, health and wellbeing. The detainee participated in protests against the government in 2018, and his detainment stemmed, according to the IACHR, from a context of repression against the Catholic church and political prisoners in Nicaragua.
  3. Syria declared the state consent to the United Nations (UN) for facilitating humanitarian assistance into the northern territories under rebel control.
  4. Following the growth of the American labor movement, the Hollywood actors’ union voted to strike.
  5. Sigrid Kaag, Dutch deputy prime minister and leader of the left-liberal D66 party, quits politics following death threats against her.
  6. Kosovo’s parliament descends into a brawl after opposition lawmaker throws water at the prime minister.
  7. The electoral body in Thailand has formally requested the country’s Constitutional Court to declare the ineligibility of Pita Limjaroenrat, leader of the progressive party, on the grounds that his ownership of shares in a media firm violates the country’s electoral rules.
  8. The Supreme Electoral Tribunal of Guatemala has expressed concerns amidst presidential intervention in the most recent elections held on June 25.
  9. The Supreme Court of the United States will hear a case in which it will have to set a clear standard in relation to limiting gun ownership rights for citizens who have received restraining orders.

New Scholarship

  1. Aguilera, Mario. “Environmental Human Rights” (the book provides the first analysis of the ground-breaking environmental human rights law being developed in Latin America and the Caribbean and brings practitioners and academics up to date on the legal tools for protecting people and the planet, considering both the Escazú Agreement and the American Convention on Human Rights).
  2. Albert, Richard (edited by). “The Architecture of Constitutional Amendments: History, Law, Politics” (the anthology explores the impact of codifying constitutional amendments on the constitution’s operation of democracy, the rule of law, and the separation of powers.).
  3. Bassok, Or. “The World of Constitutionalism is Not Flat” (criticizes modern approaches to constitutional law, which reduces the meaning of constitutional determinations into countable data, particularly in relation to how unarticulated and undiscussed this methodology has become).
  4. Bussani, Mauro; Cassese, Sabino; Infantino, Marta(edited by). “Comparative Legal Metrics: Quantification of Performances as Regulatory Technique” (the book aims to fill a gap in legal literature by showing how performance measurements interact with the law in different regions and sectors, which legal effects they produce, and for whose benefit).
  5. Desai, Deval. “Expert Ignorance: The Law and Politics of Rule of Law Reform” (in this thought-provoking book, Deval Desai sheds light on a phenomenon called “expert ignorance”, focusing on how this paradoxical form of expertise works in practice).
  6. Desai, Bharat; Mandal, Moumita. “Sexual and Gender-Based Violence in International Law: making International Institutions (examines factors responsible for sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) against women and sets forth the use of international law to play a crucial role in eliminating SGBV.
  7. Golia, Angelo. “A few practical things: The Redress of Law and the irritation of (critical) constitutional theory” (argues that Emilios Christodoulidis’s  “The Redress of Law” most valuable contribution is its capacity to innovate current theoretical discourses beyond the concepts of liberal political theory.
  8. Parks, Gregory; Toussaint, Etienne.  “The Color of Law Review” (argues that the diversity problem in law review has to be viewed in a broader context of efforts to eradicate racial injustice in education).
  9. Sierra, Humberto; Robledo, Paula; González, Diego (edited by). “Justicia Constitucional a Debate: Vol. 2”. Reviews and criticizes the most relevant decision with the highest impact of the Colombian Constitutional Court during the second semester of 2022.
  10. Tjandra, Jonathan. “The Prudential Approach to Constitutional Adjudication” (revisits the practice of the High Court of Australia as a principle of judicial restraint).
  11. Tuchtfeld E. Case law on content moderation and freedom of expression (analyses relevant cases dealing with matters of content moderation that are included in the Global Freedom of Expression Case Law Database).
  12. von Bogdandy, Armin. Morales, Mariela; Sánchez, Zulima; Covilla, Juan Carlos (edited by) La interamericanización del derecho administrative en América Latina: hacia un Ius Commune (explores the interaction between international law and national law as a central axis to address Latin-American structural deficits in the perspective of the transformative constitutionalism).

Calls for Papers and Announcements

  1. Call for papers for the 2024 Public Law Conference to be held at the University of Ottawa on 3-5 July 2024. Deadline: August 21, 2023.
  2. Call for papers for the 26th British Legal History Conference, which will take place in July 2024. Abstracts must be emailed by Friday 1 September.
  3. The Editorial Board of Comparative Constitutional Law and Administrative Law Journal invite manuscripts (articles, notes, case comments and book reviews) for publication in the upcoming issue of their Journal. The last date for submission of manuscripts towards publication is August 15, 2023.
  4. In 2024, the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg (MPIL), will celebrate its 100th anniversary. They are hosting a Call for Focus Sections and Papers, with no set deadline, as the editors will consider proposals on a rolling basis.
  5. Call for Papers, “Global constitutionalism and supranational adjudicative bodies: Global south experiences vis-à-vis hegemony” from the Norwegian Centre for Human Rights. The event will take place on November 16 and 17, 2023.
  6. The Journal of International Law of Peace and Armed Conflict invites authors to submit papers to be published in the 2nd issue of 2023. The deadline for submissions of contributions is the 15th of July, 2023.
  7. The Brazilian Journal of International Law invites submissions for a special issue on “International Criminal Court: 25 years” to be published in January 2024. Deadline: 1st August 2023.
  8. The 2024 ESIL Research Forum will take place on Thursday, 18, and Friday, April 19 2024 and will be hosted by the Department of Law of the University of Cyprus in Nicosia. The 2024 ESIL Research Forum organizers invite the submission of papers on aspects of ‘Revisiting Interactions between Legal Orders’. Deadline: 30 September 2023.

Elsewhere Online

  1. Nicholas Lemann recognizes the debate and the future targets in the fight against affirmative action in his latest publication in the New Yorker.
  2. The Constitutional Reform Team in Jamaica recently launched the Road to Republic website, which will contain the most relevant news in relation to the constituent process underway in Jamaica.
  3. Azeem Amedi discusses the most recent sanction against a recently appointed Justice in the Indonesian Constitutional Court, “Restoring Public Trust in the Indonesian Constitutional Court”.
  4. The Guatemala Constitutional Court has played a crucial role in the Elections of the Country, albeit controversial. Edgar Ortiz Romero identifies the pivotal role of this entity in his post “Court-Ordered Politics: The Influence of Guatemala’s Constitutional Court in Elections”.
  5. Mark Buse reflects on the effects of the significant question doctrine in the latest SCOTUS decisions, “The Supreme Court v. the Administrative State”.
  6. Teresa Violante reflects on “The Representation of Women in National High Courts: A ‘Quota Revolution’ in the Making?”.
  7. Leonid Sirota proposes a perspective to approach the “digital constitutionalism” debate in “A Constitution without Constitutionalism”.
  8. Majida Ismael compares the 2022 decision to declare the one-year extension of the Parliament in Kurdistan unconstitutional to previous extension decisions in his post “Extending the Parliament Beyond its Fixed Term: Between Judicial Activism and Judicial Self-restraint”. 
  9. Researchers and agencies agree that a multidimensional index should replace a simpler income-based measure for poverty.
  10. The Human Rights & Responsible Business report for June 2023 is a must-read!
  11. Stefan Talmon reflects on the “Free International Order” concept in the most recent German Practice in International Law publication.
  12. The European Parliament recently proposed a new set of rules and procedures about the election of representatives to the Parliament through direct vote.
  13. Chile’s New Constitutional Proposal: A Balance Between Change and Continuity?” by Sergio Verdugo.


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