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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DiscussionResponse

The limits of emergency mechanisms

A Response to Tine Hanrieder and Christian Kreuder-Sonnen Emergency mechanisms are essential in addressing and containing crisis situations such as the recent Ebola outbreak. Tine and Christian have drawn our attention to the development of the WHO’s emergency powers, and to how recent changes and adjustments of the organization’s response compared to the 2009 swine flu outbreak had a legitimacy enhancing effect. At the same time, however, thinking and conceptualizing …

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DiscussionKick-off

The WHO’s new emergency powers

From SARS to Ebola

The Ebola outbreak is only the third Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) ever declared by the World Health Organization (WHO). The WHO’s emergency authority is based on the International Health Regulations (IHR) adopted in 2005. While these regulations enable the organization only to recommend measures to states, its decisions to declare a PHEIC and to issue temporary recommendations are de facto authoritative points of reference for global and …

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