Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law

What’s New in Public Law

Mohamed Abdelaal, Assistant Professor, Alexandria University Faculty of 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 French Constitutional Council rendered its decision on the constitutionality of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).
  2. The French Conseil D’état ruled that French government is under an obligation to provide water and sanitation to migrants.
  3. The German Constitutional Court ruled constitutional the federal statute regarding compulsory contributions of members of chambers of commerce and industry.
  4. The Bangladesh Supreme Court has declared unconstitutional the 16th constitutional amendment, which authorizes the parliament to impeach judges.
  5. The Supreme Court of Kenya is set to hear an appeal against the nomination for a parliamentary seat.

In the News

  1. In Ukraine, the parliament approved a new bill on the constitutional court.
  2. In Zimbabwe, a legislative bill that grants the President the power to appoint Chief Justice is awaiting presidential approval.
  3. In Liberia, legislators are considering impeachment proposal against three supreme court justices.
  4. In Venezuela, representatives were elected to write a new constitution.
  5. The Jordanian parliament voted to repeal law encouraging rapists to marry victims.
  6. President Donald Trump has signed into law new sanctions against Iran, North Korea, and Russia.

New Scholarship

  1. András Jakab, Sustainability in European Constitutional Law, Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law & International Law (MPIL) Research Paper No. 2016-16 (discussing the emergence of the concept of sustainability as a key constitutional concept on the European Constitutional Law.)
  2. Anna Sledzinska-Simon and Michal Ziółkowski, Constitutional Identity of Poland: Is the Emperor Putting on the Old Clothes of Sovereignty? (examining the application of constitutional identity as a judicial concept denoting both convergence and divergence with the EU standards and arguing that recent legal reforms affecting the rule of law are not merely an example of constitutional dispensation, but a return to national sovereignty.)
  3. Natalie Ram, Science as Speech, 102 Iowa Law Review (forthcoming) (establishing a framework for assessing whether and when legislatures cross the constitutional line by regulating scientific experimentation.)
  4. Yitshak Cohen, Recognition or Non-Recognition of Foreign Civil Marriages in Israel, (Yearbook of Private International Law, Volume 18 (2017) (discussing how the Israeli courts, unlike the legislature, have more of a civil orientation than a religious one toward personal status matters.)
  5. J. Michael Martin, Should the Government be in the Business of Taxing Churches?, 29 Regent University Law Review (2017) (proposing the question of whether a federal income tax should be imposed on churches.)
  6. Stijn Smet, Conscientious Objection to Same-Sex Marriages: Beyond the Limits of Toleration (2016) (arguing that the UK courts and Dutch legislator have drawn those limits at the point where civil servants cause same-sex couples expressive harm.)
  7. Fu Hualing and Jason G. Buhi, Diverging Trends in the Socialist Constitutionalism of the People’s Republic of China and Socialist Republic of Vietnam, (2017) (providing an overview to comparative study of Sino-Vietnamese comparative constitutionalism by exploring the bases of three core, substantive pillars of socialist constitutionalism through the Sino-Vietnamese comparison: insistence on Party leadership, reliance on socialist rule of law, and adaptation to populism.)
  8. Jonathan Griffiths, The Tobacco Industry’s Challenge to the United Kingdom’s Standardised Packaging Legislation – Global Lessons for Tobacco Control Policy?, The  Queensland University of Technology Law Review (forthcoming, 2017) (discussing the significance of the United Kingdom’s Standardised Packaging of Tobacco Products Regulations 2015.)
  9. Adam Perry, Pardons and Mercy, (2017) (considering whether the law’s understanding of mercy is consistent with our ordinary understanding of mercy.)
  10. Son Ngoc Bui, Globalization of Constitutional Identity, 26(3) Washington International Law Journal, 463-533 (2017) (extending Gary J. Jacobsohn’s theory of constitutional identity with an emphasis on the impact of constitutional globalization to the change of national constitutional identity, exemplified by socialist experiences).

Special Announcement from ARC Kathleen Fitzpatrick Laureate Fellowship Program in Comparative Constitutional at Melbourne Law School

The Laureate Program in Constitutional Law, led by Professor Adrienne Stone, ARC Kathleen Fitzpatrick Australian Laureate Fellow, and funded by the Australian Research Council, and is delighted to announce that applications are open for the 2018 Laureate Visiting Fellowship mentoring scheme.

The Fellowships are designed to enable a number of outstanding female doctoral and early career researchers to visit Melbourne Law School and work with Professor Stone’s Laureate Program in Constitutional Law, for up to two months. The Laureate program entitled Balancing Diversity and Social Cohesion in Democratic Constitutions,brings together leading scholars in law to enhance the capacity of constitutional law.

Funding of up to $3000 is available for Laureate Visiting Fellows in Comparative Constitutional Law, towards the costs of travel to, and accommodation in, Melbourne.  The amount will be allocated on a case by case basis. As such, applicants should consider the cost implication before applying, as there may be out-of-pocket expenses not covered by the Fellowship. Visiting fellows from outside Australia are responsible for obtaining and funding any necessary visas. Applications close on 1 October 2018. For more information about how to apply, visit our website.

Call for Papers

  1. ACTORE, the Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence of the University of Antwerp, invites submissions for a two-day Workshop on “Judicial Governance: The role of European and International Courts and their Interaction with other Actors”, to be held in Antwerp on 14-15 December 2017. The deadline for submitting abstracts (max. 1 page) is September 1, 2017.
  2. The Center for Global Constitutionalism at the WZB Berlin Social Science Center has issued a call for applications for a three-year full-time research fellow position (post-doc).
  3. The Peter A. Allard School of Law at the University of British Columbia invites applications for The Rt. Hon. Beverley McLachlin, P.C., UBC Professorship in Constitutional Law.
  4. The Department of Government at the University of Texas at Austin invites graduate student submissions for the fourth annual Graduate Conference in Public Law, to be held November 2-3, 2017.
  5. The T.M.C. Asser Institute will organize an international conference on ‘Human Dignity and Human Security in Times of Terrorism: International (Human Rights) Law Challenges and Opportunities’.
  6. The Journal of International Media & Entertainment Law (JIMEL) in association with the Southwestern Law Review and Southwestern International Law Journal invites submissions for a symposium on Global Fake News and Defamation.
  7. The American Constitution Society for Law & Policy is accepting paper proposals for a workshop on public law on January 4, 2018, at the 2018 AALS Annual Meeting in San Diego.

Elsewhere on Blogs

  1. Pierre de Vos, Distinguishing fact from fiction: What happens if a vote of no confidence succeeds?, Constitutionally Speaking
  2. Matt Belenky, Amazon, “Kill Quill,” and the Two Bills, JURIST
  3. Ewelina U. Ochab, Could the UK Lead the Efforts to Prevent and Prosecute Acts of Genocide?, OxHRH
  4. Matt Williams, How Parliament’s failure to clearly articulate immigration policy forces judges to take control, LSE British Politics and Policy
  5. David Super, Is the Republican Effort to Destroy the ACA Dead?, Balkinization
  6. Saul Cornell, Slavery and the Right to Travel Armed: A Short History Lesson, Take Care
  7. Łukasz Bojarski, A Polish Legal Road Roller: Can the Political Sentence be Stopped?, ConstitutionNet
  8. Rachel Reed, The Women Activists Working to Keep Kenya’s Election Peaceful, NewsDeeply


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