Blog of the International Journal of Constitutional Law

What’s New in Public Law

Maja Sahadžić, Ph.D. Researcher (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 in Latvia will examine the constitutionality of the education reform aimed at switching to Latvian as the sole language of instruction at school.
  2. The Constitutional Court in Gabon dissolved the national parliament and called on the government to step down for failing to organize twice-delayed elections.
  3. The Supreme Court in Pakistan reserved its decision in the contempt case against the federal privatization minister after both sides completed their arguments.
  4. The Constitutional Court in Uganda ordered that the corruption trial of two businessmen that was stayed five years ago should resume before the Anti-corruption court.
  5. The Supreme Court in Finland denied the prosecution’s request to appeal in sexual abuse of 10-year-old.
  6. The Constitutional Court in Slovenia rejected complaints by the Slovenian central bank and the European Central Bank with regards to the seizure of Banka Slovenije data in 2016.
  7. The Constitutional Court in Romania ruled that the changes to the referendum law are constitutional.
  8. The Supreme Court of Israel backed increasing tax burden on the multinational research and development units in Israel.
  9. The Supreme Court in California ruled in favor of the gig workers.
  10. The Constitutional Court in Kosovo ruled that parliament’s ratification of a border demarcation deal with Montenegro was done legally.
  11. The Supreme Court in Chechnya will hear an appeal in the case of a prominent human rights defender who has spent nearly four months in detention on drug charges that associates say were fabricated.
  12. The Supreme Court in India warned that the Taj Mahal is turning brown and green due to pollution and neglect.
  13. The Supreme Court in the United Kingdom reserved its decision in the “gay cake” case.

In the News

  1. The Romanian President announced that he will send the justice laws redefining the magistrates’ status and responsibilities to the Constitutional Court and the Venice Commission for analysis.
  2. An independent selection committee designated to appoint a new Constitutional Court judge in Indonesia called on Indonesians with extensive knowledge of constitutional law to participate in the selection process.
  3. The Prime Minister of Gabon resigned after the constitutional court dissolved the parliament.
  4. The National Assembly in Armenia did not elect a new member of the Constitutional Court of Armenia.
  5. The United Kingdom ratified the Unified Patent Court Agreement.
  6. The Supreme Court President in Israel pleaded with the Prime Minister not to endanger democracy.
  7. The Israeli parliament approved a law empowering the country’s prime minister and defense minister to declare war.
  8. The Armenian Parliament failed to elect a new prime minister.
  9. The Rwandan Parliament summoned five ministers for failing to address citizen’s concerns.
  10. The Iraqi who threw shoes at the president Bush runs for the Iraqi parliament.
  11. The city of Phnom Penh banned protests outside Cambodia’s parliament ahead of the forthcoming national elections.
  12. The parliament in Chad approved a new constitution expanding the president’s powers.
  13. Police intervened in the opening of the Parliament of Sierra Leone.
  14. Dozens of women run in first parliamentary elections in Lebanon since 2009.
  15. The second ordinary session of the Jordanian parliament was discontinued by a royal decree.

New Scholarship

  1. Jonathan L. Marshfield, The Amendment Effect, Boston University Law Review (2018) (analyzing original data for evidence that formal constitutional amendment rates effect the practice of judicial review).
  2. Hualing Fu, John Gillespie, Pip Nicholson, William Edmund Partlett (eds.), Socialist Law in Socialist East Asia (2018 forthcoming) (offering a fresh theoretical approach to socialist laws which demonstrates how socialist law in China and Vietnam may shape the future of global legal development among developing countries).
  3. Melissa Curley, Björn Dressel and Stephen McCarthy, Asian Studies Review (2018) Competing Visions of the Rule of Law in Southeast Asia: Power, Rhetoric and Governance (offering insight into the social dynamics affecting how the rule of law in Southeast Asia is being interpreted by political actors and being contested and consolidated via governance practices).
  4. Stefanus Hendrianto, Law and Politics of Constitutional Courts, Indonesia and the Search for Judicial Heroes (2018) (evaluating different models of judicial leadership in Indonesia and the impact that individual chief justices can have on the development of constitutional courts) (20% Discount Available – enter the code FLR40 at checkout).
  5. Mark Elliott, Jason NE Varuhas, Shona Wilson Stark (eds.), The Unity of Public Law? Doctrinal, Theoretical and Comparative Perspectives (2018) (investigating a unifying and disunifying framework for understanding public law in comparative perspective).
  6. Raphael Minder, The Struggle for Catalonia: Rebel Politics in Spain (2017) (analyzing what sets the Catalans apart from Spain, and how the separatist debate is playing out).
  7. Paul Yowell, Constitutional Rights and Constitutional Design: Moral and Empirical Reasoning in Judicial Review (2018) (arguing that in comparison to legislatures, the institutional capacities of courts are deficient and considering the implications of comparative institutional capacity for constitutional design).
  8. Jocelyn Stacey (ed.), The Constitution of the Environmental Emergency (2018) (recentering the debates in environmental law around the question of why governance under the rule of law is something worth having in the environmental context).
  9. Stefano Bartolini, The Political (2018) (analyzes the politics as the production and distribution of “behavioral compliance” as opposed to the view of politics as a distribution of values, an aggregation of preferences or a solution to social dilemmas).
  10. Antonio Floridia, From Participation to Deliberation: A Critical Genealogy of Deliberative Democracy (2017) (providing a history of the idea of deliberative democracy, analyzing its relationship with the earlier idea, and practices of participatory democracy in the 1960s and 1970s).
  11. Alice Valdesalici, Francesco Palermo and Annika Kress (eds.), Comparing Fiscal Federalism (2018 forthcoming) (investigating intergovernmental financial relations and the current de jure and de facto allocation of financial and fiscal powers in compound states from a comparative and interdisciplinary perspective).

Call for Papers and Announcements

  1. The Centre for Socio-Legal Studies at the University of Oxford organizes a debate “Catalonia: A Constitutional Debate” on 10 May 2018 in Oxford. Registrations must be completed online.
  2. The University of Zurich invites applications for a postdoctoral research position in Digital Democracy/Computational Social Science. The deadline for applications is 31 May 2018.
  3. The Ghent Rolin-Jaequemyns International Law Institute (GRILI) and the Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies (GGS), together with Pax Christi Vlaanderen and Vredesactie organize an international conference “Parliamentary War Powers – National and European Perspectives” on 25 May 2018 in Brussels. Participation is free of charge, but registration is required.
  4. The European Neighbourhood Policy Chair at the Natolin campus of the College of Europe and the European Forum Alpbach welcome applications for the 6th ENP PhD Summer School “The European Neighbourhood Policy: Principled Pragmatism and the Quest for Resilience” on 15-31 August 2018. The deadline for applications is 10 May 2018.
  5. The South Dakota State University invites proposals for panels, individual presentations, and workshops for the “International Conference on Global Human Rights” on 4-6 October 2018 in Brookings. The proposals must be submitted no later than 18 May 2018 to
  6. The University of Oslo invites applications for an assistant professor (postdoctoral fellow) in Political Science. The deadline for applications is 22 May 2018.
  7. The KU Leuven hosts the “15th International Conference on Social Sciences” on 13-14 July 2018 in Leuven. The deadline for a submission of abstracts is 23 May 2018.
  8. The University of Tartu, the Uppsala University, and the University of Kent announce a call for abstracts for the research workshop “Democracy in Reverse: Patterns of Autocratization in Eastern Europe and Eurasia” on 19 October 2018 in Tartu. The deadline for submitting abstracts is 15 May 2018.
  9. The University of Groningen invites applications for a PhD position “Privatization through Technology”. The deadline for applications is 31 May 2018.
  10. The Government and Law Research Group at the University of Antwerp organizes the 8th PhD Conference “Values and principles in multilevel governance: challenges and opportunities” on 25 May 2018. The deadline for registrations is 18 May 2018.
  11. The EURAC invites applications for the yearly Federal Scholar in Residence Program. The deadline for applications is 1 July 2018.

Elsewhere Online

  1. Iddo Porat, The problem with Iceland’s proposed ban on circumcision, EUROPP
  2. Jessica van der Meer, Paws for Thought: The High Court tackles PSPOs in a Landmark Judgment, UK Constitutional Law Association
  3. Alexander Horne, Dispute Resolution and Enforcement after Brexit, UK Constitutional Law Association
  4. Asanga Welikala, The perils of semi-presidentialism? The collapse of cohabitation and the design of executive power in Sri Lanka, Blog of the IACL, AIDC
  5. Scott Bomboy, Presidential subpoenas: An unsettled matter?, National Constitution Center
  6. Ozgur H. Cinar, Chronic human rights problems of Turkey during the EU accession process, openDemocracy
  7. Matt Ford, How the Supreme Court Could Rewrite the Rules for DNA Searches, The New Republic
  8. Tomohiro Osaki and Daisuke Kikuchi, Abe’s dream to revise Japan’s Constitution drifts farther from reach as long-running scandals chip away at support, japantimes
  9. Tim Gray, How Supreme Court Changed Course of Studio System 70 Years Ago, Variety
  10. Michael Reigner, Access to information and the fourth wave of rights, The Völkerrechtsblog
  11. Arianna Giovannini, England’s local elections 2018: the unusual case of Sheffield City Region’s mayoral contest, Democratic Audit UK
  12. Tobias Lock, Has Parliament Taken Charge of Brexit?, Verfassungsblog
  13. Terry Carney, Robo-Debt Illegality: A Failure of Rule of Law Protections?, AUPUBLAW
  14. Katharine Adeney, Divide to rule? Federal Innovation (and its lack) in South Asia, 50 Shades of Federalism


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