BofaxeCurrent Developments

Ohrenbetäubendes Schweigen

Zur Blockade des Sicherheitsrates im Kampf gegen Covid-19

Die aktuelle Covid-19 Pandemie präsentiert sich als globale Krise nationaler Alleingänge. Das liegt auch am Sicherheitsrat (SR) der Vereinten Nationen (VN), der sich seit Wochen nicht auf eine Resolution einigen kann und so sein Koordinierungspotential nicht realisiert. Politisch ist dieses Schweigen verheerend. Juristisch gesehen verpasst es der SR, an seine vorigen Resolutionen zur Eindämmung von Epidemien anzuknüpfen. In der laufenden Diskussion (hier und hier) zeigt sich nun jedoch, dass die …

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IL in Pandemic TimesSymposium

Beauty and the virus

Fashion brands, the UNGPs and (imagined) solidarity in pandemic times

Many parts of the world are in lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic. As most of Europe was hit hard by the virus and its rapid spread, countries implemented lockdown measures, varying in reach, style and enforcement, but with a main commonality to close down facilities deemed non-essential. Consequently, apparel stores had to close their doors and customers have been restricted to online-shopping, resulting in a vast drop in demand. …

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IL in Pandemic TimesSymposium

Look for everyday solidarity

International law in pandemic times

The absent global leadership and starkly uncoordinated cross-border responses have exacerbated the spread of the coronavirus. On a positive note, countries are progressively joining forces to address immediate humanitarian appeals. They are engaging with diverse partners and experimenting on novel funding approaches through various forums, including the Coronavirus Global Response and the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations. These partnerships are bringing light to the spirit of solidarity. We want to …

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SymposiumYoung Approaches to International Law

Do youth delegates at the UN have an influence on public international law?

Young people, mostly defined as people aged between 15 and 24 in the UN context (for more information on the definition of youth, see here), are generally underrepresented in political processes at national and international levels. Youth participation programs, including youth delegate programs, aim at alleviating this underrepresentation. At the United Nations, youth delegate programs were first envisaged by the member states in 1981 (for a comprehensive overview over the …

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SymposiumYoung Approaches to International Law

Rejuvenating international law

An introduction to an emerging field of research

Announcing a “Youthquake”, Time Magazine rang the bell of change, declaring that a new generation is on its way to power. International legal scholarship, however, has not yet recognised this dynamic as an emerging field of research.  In this light (or darkness), students of Freie Universität Berlin hosted a conference on the question of youth in international law this January. The event was shaped by questions such as “Is international …

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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 ReviewResponse

The “pseudo doctrine”, still a real problem

In her post “The ‘pseudo doctrine’ – a pseudo problem?” Raffaela Kunz reviews my thesis “Das Scheininstitut der unmittelbaren Anwendbarkeit“. Her friendly and well written review raises a few questions, so I am most happy to have the chance for a response. In general Kunz follows my line of arguments but she raises some conceptual doubts and moreover questions the relevance of the abolishment of the pseudo-doctrine of direct applicability …

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Current Developments

Is the spread of Coronavirus already a pandemic?

Unpacking a (legal) definition

On 26 February 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO)’s Director-General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus stated that the current spread of the coronavirus (SARS-CoV2) “has pandemic potential”. That is, despite the fact that the virus was already reported in all continents except Antarctica, there was still no reason to use the “P” word. He further clarified that declaring it as such would not carry any benefit, rather would only “increase fear and …

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Current Developments

SDGs and the rule of law: the need to globalize the ethics of legal tech

In the context of the rapid adoption and integration of legal technology at a global level, this blog will problematize the consequences of the bias of current discussions on the ethics of legal tech in the context of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The SDGs strongly emphasize the importance of the rule of law as a basis for development.  While there is a fast-growing literature on the ethics of legal …

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Current Developments

Climate change in the Security Council

On the road to qualifying climate change as ‘threat multiplier’

Wildfires are heating the Earth from the Arctic to the Amazon, islands are drowning, and the record for the hottest year has been broken every year since 2015. No one would doubt that climate change causes these events. Despite people from all continents protesting in the streets to urge decision-makers to eventually take action to help combat climate change, the UN Security Council (UNSC) has not taken any binding measures …

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