Book ReviewKick-off

Governing the world through information (law)

Knowledge is power – power is knowledge. While this nexus certainly is a commonplace in the critical sociology of knowledge, it may actually never have been more topical than today. With the dramatic increase of (digital) communicative interactions within and beyond national boundaries, ‘information’ has become available in an absolute inflationary manner. This is also reflected in everyday discourse: The German Gesellschaft für deutsche Sprache (Association for the German Language) …

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Book ReviewKick-off

In search for principles

The global governance of information

This post opens the book symposium on Michael Riegner’s “The International Institutional Law of Information” (Mohr Siebeck 2017; original German title: Informationsverwaltungsrecht internationaler Institutionen). It will be followed by a text of Hendrik Simon and a response by the author. Michael Riegner’s book was written under the supervision of Phillip Dann at the Humboldt University of Berlin. It examines the phenomenon that international institutions are also acting under the conditions and possibilities of …

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Book ReviewKick-off

Practice as method

Germany’s rehabilitation in and through international law

‘International law is what international lawyers do.’ This statement slightly abridged taken from Martti Koskenniemi’s seminal Gentle Civilizer of Nations, points forthright to one of international law’s key characteristics: it is shaped by practice. This practice – not being a source of international law in itself without supporting opinio juris – is of course first and foremost set by states. On a second layer state practice is to a certain …

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DiscussionKick-off

Between Narratives and Borders

Analyzing Ethiopia’s Domestic Labor Migration to the Gulf Countries

A significant number of Ethiopians are migrating to the Gulf countries to work in the domestic labor market. In late 2013, the Ethiopian government passed a temporary ban on labor migration, which was subsequently lifted five years later in January 2018. How have these legal developments shaped the current situation, and what are the major push factors influencing Ethiopian labor migration? Two factors are particularly noteworthy: first, a state monopoly …

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DiscussionKick-off

Will Tariff Wars Unravel the Multilateral Trading System?

History is not unfamiliar with the rigours of tariff wars. Back in the 1930s, retaliatory tariff escalation led to the great depression, which in turn contributed to the Second World War. Leaders of the free world sought to revive the beleaguered global economy through free and fair trade. Years of negotiations aimed at increasing market access and curtailing protectionism culminated in the establishment of the World Trade Organization (WTO). The …

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DiscussionKick-off

Human rights and the international protection of biodiversity – A promising alliance (Part II)

The first part of this post established the intrinsic connection between human rights and the protection of biodiversity, looked at human rights and the environment in international public law in general and examined the conceptual relationship between biodiversity and the environment. The second part centers around the current approach of the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and the Environment which promises nothing less than a change of paradigm on …

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DiscussionKick-off

Human rights and the international protection of biodiversity – A promising alliance (Part I)

For a long time, the legal and political endeavours to protect humans from violations of their basic rights seemed in no way connected to the preservation of biodiversity. In the past, this paradigm has been reflected by indifferent international responses to biodiversity issues: Whereas the promotion and protection of human rights has in recent decades become a major concern of the international community and the relationship between human rights and …

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DiscussionKick-off

Neue Initiative der polnischen Regierung in Sachen deutscher Weltkriegsreparationen

Germany v. Italy 2.0?

Erneut fanden sich Anfang Januar 2018 Meldungen über Erwägungen der polnischen Regierung, Reparationsansprüche gegen die Bundesrepublik für Schäden des Landes während der deutschen Besatzung im 2. Weltkrieg geltend zu machen. Nun sollten US-amerikanische Gerichte helfen, die Ansprüche durchzusetzen, so der polnische Botschafter in Deutschland, Andrzej Przyłębski. Einigen dieser Aspekte soll sich dieser Beitrag widmen. Nie verheilte Wunden? Seit dem Regierungswechsel in Warschau im Spätherbst 2015 überholt die neue nationalkonservative PiS-Regierung nicht …

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DiscussionKick-off

Schadensersatzansprüche vor nationalen Gerichten aufgrund von Völkerrechtsverstößen?

Jesner v. Arab Bank

Können ausländische Unternehmen und Individuen die Verletzung von Völkerrechtsnormen durch andere ausländische Unternehmen vor Gericht rügen und Schadenersatzansprüche geltend machen? Die Verfahren gegen Arab Bank Plc. Ein solcher Fall wird derzeit in den USA vor dem Supreme Court verhandelt. In dem Fall Jesner v. Arab Bank stehen sich auf beiden Seiten ausländische, also nicht US-amerikanische, Staatsangehörige gegenüber. Die Klage, die unter dem Alien Tort Statute (ATS) eingereicht wurde, richtet sich …

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DiscussionKick-off

One law to rule them all

On the extraterritorial applicability of the new EU General Data Protection Regulation

In May 2016, the EU adopted its long-awaited new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and thereby opened a new chapter in the history of European and global data protection law. Meeting the challenges of the 21st century globally linked information-society, it took the EU-institutions more than four years and almost 4,000 amendments to finally agree on a compromise text. While elaborating the GDPR, the EU tried to solve one of the …

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