Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law

What’s New in Public Law

–Simon Drugda, Nagoya University Graduate School of Law (Japan)

In this weekly feature, I-CONnect publishes a curated reading list of developments in comparative 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 comparative public law blogosphere.

To submit relevant developments for our weekly feature on “What’s New in Comparative Public Law,” please email

Developments in Constitutional Courts

  1. The Constitutional Court of Thailand approved a ban on discussion of the country’s draft constitution ahead of a referendum on August 7, while the military government set up security centers in every province to ensure that electoral fraud or malpractice does not occur.
  2. The President of the Slovak Republic Andrej Kiska refused again to appoint three judges to the Constitutional Court.
  3. The Supreme Court of India held that farmers cannot be evicted from leased land after expiry period; ruled that army and the paramilitary cannot use excessive force during counter-insurgency operations in disturbed areas, with its personnel triable in ordinary criminal courts; warned lower court judges against judicial overreach; and ordered the central government and search engine providers Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft to find a technical solution to prevent ads displaying pre-natal sex selection tests.
  4. The Supreme Court of Canada created new guidelines on time limits for criminal trials to curb institutional delay.
  5. The Constitutional Court of Romania ruled that mayors who are handed suspended prison sentences for corruption cannot continue to serve in the office.
  6. The Constitutional Court of St. Marten struck down the Integrity Chamber Law.
  7. The Constitutional Court of Azerbaijan recognized the results of a repeat parliamentary election held in Agdash constituency.

In the News

  1. The Czech government rejected the President’s call for a referendum on EU, NATO.
  2. Japan held its Upper House election.
  3. Gambia and Tanzania outlawed the practice of child marriage.
  4. Britain lifted a ban on women serving in close combat units in the military.
  5. Poland’s ruling party confirmed that work on a new constitution has started, and amended restrictions on the Constitutional Tribunal again before the NATO summit in Warsaw.
  6. A Ugandan MP urged amending constitution to abolish the presidential age limit.
  7. Hungary set the date for referendum on EU mandatory refugee quotas.

New Scholarship

  1. Mohamed Abdelaal, The Paradox of Freedom of Religion in Post-Revolutionary Egypt, in Religious Freedom and Religious Pluralism in Africa: Prospects and Limitations, Pieter Coertzen, M. Christian Green, and Len Hansen eds. (2016) (highlighting the puzzle of the political significance that Article 2 of the Constitution, which lists the principles of the Islamic sharia as the main source of legislation)
  2. Alex Schwartz and Melanie Janelle Murchison, Judicial Independence and Impartiality in Divided Societies: An Empirical Analysis of the Constitutional Court of Bosnia-Herzegovina, 50 Law & Society Review 4 (forthcoming) (examining influence of ethno-nationalism on judicial behavior and the extent to which variation in judicial tenure amplifies or lessens this influence)
  3. Giuseppe Martinico, Constitutionalism, Resistance, and Openness: Comparative Law Reflections on Constitutionalism in Postnational Governance, Yearbook of European Law (2016) (arguing that comparative law analysis of constitutions can help overcome the false dichotomy between pluralism and constitutionalism in contemporary literature on the subject)
  4. Christian Bjørnskov and Stefan Voigt, The Architecture of Emergency Constitutions (2016) (examining “emergency constitutions” for distribution patterns in the design of additional emergency powers and discerning “typical” models emergency constitutions)
  5. Marie-Luce Paris, The Comparative Method in Legal Research: The Art of Justifying Choices, in Legal Research Methods: Principles and Practicalities, Laura Cahillane and Jennifer Schweppe, eds. (forthcoming 2016) (examining the main conceptual tools on how the issue of method in comparative law has been approached by bringing to the fore the justificatory argument)
  6. Martijn van den Brink, What’s in a Name Case? Some Lessons for the Debate Over the Free Movement of Same-Sex Couples within the EU, German Law Journal (2016) (engaging the debate on the free movement of same-sex couples and exploring the lessons to be learned from the case law on the recognition of names in the varied Members States of the EU)
  7. Mikolaj Barczentewicz, Judicial Duty Not to Apply EU Law (2016) (exploring the limits to incorporation of European Union law in the United Kingdom and arguing that UK courts are sometimes under a duty not to apply EU law)
  8. Daniel Friedmann, The Purse and the Sword (2016) (critically assessing Israel’s
    legal system in the context of its politics, history, and the forces that shape its society on a background of major contentious issues facing modern Israel today)
  9. Amy Raub, Adele Cassola, Isabel Latz and Jody Heymann, Protections of Equal Rights Across Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity: An Analysis of 193 National Constitutions, 28 Yale Journal of Law and Feminism 149 (2016) (providing a quantitative analysis of constitutional protections for equal rights based on sexual orientation and gender identity across the spheres of general equality and discrimination, employment and marriage rights)
  10. Fred O. Smith Jr., Undemocratic Restraint (2016) (arguing that constitutionalization of prudential limits reduces dialogue among branches of government, and exacerbates some of the most troubling aspects of countermajoritarian judicial supremacy)
  11. Michael D. Ramsey, Evading the Treaty Power?: The Constitutionality of Nonbinding Agreements, 11 Florida International University Law Review 371 (2016) (assessing the nonbinding character of international agreements made or entered into by presidents on their own authority contrasted with the constitutional checks on the treaty-making power)
  12. Richard Bellamy, A European Republic of Sovereign States: Sovereignty, Republicanism and the EU, European Journal of Political Thought (forthcoming) (proposing an alternative vision of the EU as a republican association of sovereign states that allows sovereign states and their peoples to mutually regulate their external sovereignty in non-dominating ways)
  13. Gregory Voss and Céline Castets-Renard, Proposal for an International Taxonomy on the Various Forms of the ‘Right to Be Forgotten’: A Study on the Convergence of Norms, 14 Colorado Technology Law Journal 281 (2016) (examining the context, various forms internationally, and their potential convergence of the “right to be forgotten,” while at the same time proposing it a new analytical grid)
  14. Alexis Albarian and Olivier Moréteau eds., Comparative Law and … (2016) (gathering papers presented at the Juris Diversitas Annual Conference 2014 and revealing the essence of Juris Diversitas as an international, interdisciplinary community composed of comparative law scholars who explore the interaction of the law with all branches of human and social sciences)

Calls for Papers and Announcements

  1. Tilburg Law Review (TiLR) invites article submissions for its fall 2017 special issue on “Translating Law.” The issue is prepared in the legacy of Willem Witteveen, a professor of jurisprudence at Tilburg Law School who tragically passed away in the MH17 disaster. The deadline for submissions is December 15, 2016.
  2. The University of Strathclyde PGR Law Conference committee seeks submissions for its second annual conference on “Visualizing the Law,” to be held on October 27-28 in Glasgow, Scotland. The deadline for abstracts is August 31, 2016.
  3. The Brazilian Journal of Law (Revista Brasileira de Direito) is accepting submissions for its second edition this year on the following themes: (a) Fundamental Rights, Constitutional Jurisdiction and Democracy; (b) Ethics, Citizenship and Sustainability; (c) Law and new technologies in the information society; (d) Studies about legal theory and dogmatics in the XXI century. The deadline for submissions is August 20, 2016, to be sent by email to
  4. Faulkner Law Review at the Thomas Goode Jones School of Law at Faulkner University invites proposals for its 5th Annual Law Review Symposium on “The Role of the Judge in the Anglo-American Tradition,” to be held on September 22-23, 2016. The deadline for submissions is July 15, 2016.
  5. Organizers of the 6th International Conference on Humanities, Society and Culture—ICHSC 2016—invite papers for the conference to be held on September 21-23, 2016 in Vancouver, Canada. The deadline for submissions is July 15, 2016.

Elsewhere Online

  1. David Landau, Can the Columbian Model be Generalized?, Blog of the IACL, AIDC
  2. Ibtissem Guenfoud, Passing Laws without a Vote: the French Labour Reform and Art. 49-3 of the Constitution, Verfassungsblog
  3. Giuseppe Martinico, Political Reductionism at its Best: the EU Institutions’ Response to the Brexit Referendum, Verfassungsblog
  4. Alok Prasanna Kumar, Six Opinions, One Problem: Why a Nine-Judge Bench of the Supreme Court will Rethink a Fifty-Year Old Case, Indian Constitutional Law and Philosophy
  5. Vasujith Ram, Supreme Court on Pre-Legislative Consultation, Law and Other Things
  6. Graeme Cowie, Scotland and a Second Independence Referendum – The Obstacles and Challenges and the Comparative Solutions, UK Constitutional Law Association
  7. Michael Doherty, Should Making False Statements in a Referendum Campaign Be an Electoral Offence?, UK Constitutional Law Association
  8. Saul Leal, The tragic dialectic between happiness and apartheid, AfricLaw
  9. Olika Daniel Godson, Economic, Social and Cultural Rights under the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the enforceability problem, AfricLaw
  10. Mai Sato, Killing Time: A Comment on the Case of Brandon Astor, Oxford Human Rights Hub
  11. Douglas McDonald, Country Guidance Decisions in the UK and Australia, AUSPUBLAW
  12. Colin P.A. Jones, Japan’s discriminatory koseki registry system looks ever more outdated, The Japan Times
  13. Olivier Moréteau, We the People of the European Union, EUtopia


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