Monday, March 4, 2013

Transnational Legal Theory, vol. 3, no. 3

The new issue of the journal Transnational Legal Theory (Volume 3, Number 3, March 2013) is out. The issue includes:
  • Constitutional Adjudication and the 'Dimensions' of Judicial Activism: Comparative Legal and Institutional Heuristics (Pierdominici, Leonardo)
  • The Emergence of Global Administrative Law and Transnational Regulation (Ladeur, Karl-Heinz)
  • Theorising Global Governance Inside Out: A Response to Professor Ladeur (Xavier, Sujith)
  • The Gulf between Promise and Claim: Understanding International Law's Failure to Decolonise (Rajah, Jothie)
  • The Justice of International Law (Sellers, Mns)
  • Running from a Bear: Coordinate Constitutional Interpretation in Canada (Adams, Eric M.)
  • What Makes a Global Market? Reflections on Market Governance, Globalisation and the Law (Daskalova, Victoria)

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Call for Papers: What does Transnationalisation do with Sovereignty and the State? (ECPR Bordeaux, 4-7 Sep 2013)

What does Transnationalisation do with Sovereignty and the State? Normative Implications and Reconfigurations of Politics 
at ECPR General Conference 2013 in Bordeaux (Deadline for Paper Proposals: 1st February 2013)

Transnationalization has become a buzz word in research on globalization in political science and neighboring disciplines. Legal scholars debate the transnationalization of law and the emergence of legal arrangements alongside and beyond international law. Similarly, sociologists and historians increasingly emphasize the role of transnational processes in the (re-) shaping of social order.

Most of these approaches define the concept of transnationalization in opposition to state-driven international relations. By the concept of transnationalization they refer to and describe an ever-expanding process in which actors other than states generate and become involved in forms of social organization across and beyond territorial boundaries. In view of this process, scholars across the disciplines raise questions about the present and future of the concept of sovereignty and the national territorial state. While some argue that transnationalization amounts to an erosion of the state and of (state or national) sovereignty, others hold that the function and substance of the state and of sovereignty are altered or disaggregated by this process, but not effaced.

In this panel we wish to take up this debate and discuss the complex relation between sovereignty and transnationalization in an interdisciplinary setting. We assume that a better grasp of the “transnational” and its implications necessitates trans-disciplinary engagement. We wish to bring together scholars from different disciplines for the purpose of debating the question of how the interplay between transnationalization and sovereignty can be conceptualized in historical, sociological, legal and political terms and with what results. To what extent are foundations of modern political normativity renegotiated and contested in the process of transnationalization and how are political concepts (trans-) formed and (re-) appraised in the debate on it? How does this reshape the imaginary of politics?

Panel Chair: Christian Volk, University of Trier
Panel Co-Chair: Friederike Kuntz, University of Trier
Panel Discussant: Hauke Brunkhorst, Flensburg/ Oslo University College

Further information on the conference, the call for papers, and submission process on

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

A new ISA section: Historical International Relations

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

For a few years now, many of you will have heard us mention the need for a new section at the ISA, one in which there would be a room for historical pieces which engage with international issues in a broad sense. We hereby ask for your support for a new section at the ISA entitled Historical International Relations by signing the online petition at, and forwarding this email to colleagues you think will have an interest in supporting the section.

As you may all have noticed, there seems to be an increasing interest in historical scholarship in the discipline, an interest which is largely reflected in papers and panels presented at the conferences. However, these historical engagements appear in general in a host of different guises, sponsored (sometimes halfheartedly) by different existing sections. Some are sponsored by International Security, others by Diplomatic Studies, while more still have found shelter in the English School Section. While some may not see this as a problem, as it forces historical scholarship to engage with other sections of the discipline, we nevertheless think this situation requires a new section at the ISA.

The idea of a new section is not for historical scholarship to colonize the ISA. We do not see such a section becoming one of the leading sections of the ISA. Rather, we see it as carving out a modest space for scholars who engage historically to work together, meet, and engage with each other’s work without having to pretend to be talking about something else. This common space would allow for conversations across sub-disciplinary boundaries, conversations which are difficult to carry out within many of the other sections of the ISA, and it should thus also increase the overall cohesiveness of the discipline. Rather than fragmenting the discipline, we think a Historical International Relations Section will contribute to increased intra-disciplinary dialogue.

It is important for us to emphasize too that this is not meant to be a section for international history. What we think we have identified, is that to the extent that IR scholars engage historically, they do so as “merry amateurs” rather than professional historians. It is this spirit of collegial openness and inclusion as well as intellectual curiosity which we would like to foster by creating a new section.

In short, we see the founding of a new Historical International Relations section as a way to create a space for this type of scholarship, but also legitimize efforts to address IR historically, as it would make these topics interesting in their own right, and not because of their potential relevance for the other sections.

Thank you for supporting the new section and for forwarding the email.

We look forward to seeing you at the inaugural section meeting in the near future.

Best wishes,

Benjamin de Carvalho, NUPI
Daniel Green, University of Delaware
Halvard Leira, NUPI
Daniel Nexon, Georgetown University
Andrea Paras, University of Guelph

Tuesday, June 5, 2012


COST Action IS1003: ‘International Law between Constitutionalisation and Fragmentation’,Working Group 1: Territoriality  

Organizing Fragmented Territoriality

Call for papers:
Working Group meeting & Workshop
November 15-17, 2012, Hamburg (Germany)

Recently, scholars from various fields in legal studies and the social sciences have begun to re-think implied dichotomies (like national/global, public/private, etc.). Facing criticisms like “methodological nationalism” (Beck) or the “territorial trap” (Agnew), the workshop aims to invite perspectives that take issue with the established nexus of state sovereignty and territo-riality and to re-visit territoriality as a phenomenon organized in a variety of sites and by a variety of actors. Although obviously touching upon related social phenomena, scholars from different disciplines (like international law, international relations, sociology, geography, an-thropology, or history) have rarely linked up research agendas, so far. A major aim of the workshop is to prompt trans-disciplinary engagement.

Debates on globalization, even when focussing on international law confronted by constitu-tionalization and fragmentation, have often continued to conceive of territorial state sover-eignty and dynamics of globalization as a zero-sum game. But is this still appropriate: Do states (still) monopolize territoriality? And if they do not, who else does it, and how?

While liberal approaches to international law have made remarkable steps in facing the social complexities of globalized governance by pointing to the increasingly “disaggregated” character of (democratic) nation-state sovereignty (Slaughter), other scholars have pointed out that the implied networked forms of governance through sub-state entities -- like execu-tive agencies or courts -- are not mere functions of a de-territorialized state. Instead of just reacting to “post-modern” security threats or so-called economic necessities, state agencies rather find themselves involved in a substantive “politics of sovereignty”.

 These politics of sovereignty are not about choosing more or less state, state regulation or de-regulation, or public or private authority. Rather, diverse and, in part, disaggregated state agencies alongside various other actors establish new modes of governing, including the governing of “former” state territoriality. Although no longer alone in the projection of authority, “the state” itself is taking a decisive part in the reorganization of its own territoriality (Sassen). While, no doubt, states have their stakes in the organization of territoriality, they can be expected (and observed!) practicing governance in newly established sites ranging, as has been detailed in different research contexts, from now well-established forms of international governance in the context of International Governmental Organizations (IGOs) to “local” but nevertheless border-crossing arrangements of public-private partnerships. Furthermore, the governance of territory is in danger of slipping out of the states’ hands when IGOs establish increasingly autonomous bureaucracies that tend to emancipate themselves from the mem-ber states consent, or when governance capacities of the state are effectively challenged by private actors emerging on the scene. These different processes – conceivable as different communications constituting a "world society" (Stichweh) – profoundly change the idea of territoriality itself.

Their result might be a fragmented (legal and political) order of territoriality. New and multiple forms of regulation, however, can hardly be seen as consequences of fragmentation. Instead, the politics of sovereignty and fragmented territoriality are inextricably linked and dependent on each other. It is but the constitution of territoriality that -- in a paradoxical move -- brings about its fragmented normativity. This new multiplicity of governance raises questions for the reproduction of global normativity:

- How is territoriality (re-) constructed or challenged in different arenas (political system, legal system, and beyond)?
- How can the category of territoriality be conceived in terms of governance instead of government? What is the nexus between territoriality and governance?
- How do legal phenomena like the legalization of world politics and/or constitutional quality beyond the state emerge? What are the processes that advance/impede le-galization or constitutionalization?
- Which actors are involved? How are they related? And how is their social status de-termined and reproduced?
- How are the dividing lines between public and private established? What separates and what links up these spheres?
- How are the boundaries between law and politics drawn and how does this relate to territory?

Contributions to the workshop could touch upon themes and perspectives including the historicization of territoriality, international law and politics; state and/or non-state politics of sovereignty; the methodology of overcoming territorial traps; Global Administrative Law (GAL); Governmentality perspectives; Legal Pluralism; Sociology of Law; (Global) Governance.

 Please send paper proposals (max. 300 words) to Philip Liste and Katja Freistein (; by July 1st, 2012.

Participants from countries participating in COST Action 1003 can apply for funding for this workshop. As a rule, COST reimburses a flat rate of €120,- per night for accommodation and travel costs for two participants per participating country. For more information on COST Action 1003, please check the website: If you would like to receive COST funding, please attach a short request (max 150 words) to your paper proposal.

Dr. Philip Liste, University of Hamburg, Faculty for Economics and Social Sciences, Allende-Platz 1, 20146 Hamburg Email:
Dr. Katja Freistein, Bielefeld University, Collaborative Research Centre (SFB 882), Universitaetsstr.25, 33615 Bielefeld Email:

Wednesday, May 16, 2012


‘PERFORMING THE INTERNATIONAL: THE INTRINSIC PERFORMATIVITY OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS’ Attempts to go beyond the theory/practice dichotomy have become something of a banality in the discipline of IR in recent years. Following reflexivist scholars’ insights, the divide between discourses and facts, theory and reality or nature and culture has been largely shown as artificial and harmful to our understanding of the social world. One approach – performativity – has been particularly helpful in revealing the irrelevance of these dichotomies: indeed, performativity shows not only that the ‘material’ reality can only be understood through discourses (re-presentations), but also that these very discourses serve as exclusionary and arbitrary processes that re-create a supposedly foundational ‘reality’. Instead of being ‘foundationalist’ or ‘anti-foundationalist’, performative theory defends an ‘alter-foundationalism’ on which to build our analyses of the world. It also initiates a new approach to theory as ‘productive’ discourses and not only as ‘constative’ observations. In IR, however, performativity has been largely ignored by post-positivist scholars. Despite some precursor works – by Campbell (1992) and Weber (1998) – performativity is still not widely used. This relative disdain for performativity by IR scholars is detrimental given the contribution that this theory can bring to our understanding of the ‘reality’ of such important actors as states and international organisations, but also to concepts such as security or sovereignty. With its emphasis on the discursive power of actors, performativity can also provide an original contribution to the explanation of how norms ‘materialise’ in world politics. Therefore, this panel would like to counterbalance the neglect of the notion of performativity in IR academic production. As such, it invites papers that discuss the advantages and/or limitations of performativity at the theoretical level (for instance by comparing it to other theoretical approaches in IR or in social sciences) or that use performativity for the analysis of international phenomena. If you would like to participate in this panel, please send (i) your paper title, (ii) an abstract of approximately 200 words and (iii) your institutional affiliation to Xavier Mathieu ( by Tuesday 29 May, 2012.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

2 Promotionsstipendien Peace Research Institute Frankfurt

Promotionsstipendien in Programmbereich "Internationale Organisationen und Völkerrecht" zu vergeben An der Hessischen Stiftung Friedens- und Konfliktforschung
(HSFK) in Frankfurt sind im Programmbereich „Internationale Organisationen und Völkerrecht“ (Leitung Professor Dr. Christopher Daase)

2 Promotionsstipendien

für die Dauer von zunächst 2 Jahren zu besetzen. Eine Verlängerung ist möglich. Die Promotionsvorhaben sollten sich an der Thematik des Programmbereichs orientieren und können sich mit Gerechtigkeitskonflikten in internationalen Organisationen oder mit Fragen von Recht und Gerechtigkeit internationaler Konfliktregelung befassen. Voraussetzung für eine Bewerbung ist ein zur Promotion berechtigender Hochschulabschluss mit der Mindestnote „gut“. Eine gute Beherrschung des Englischen in Wort und Schrift ist unabdingbar.

Die Höhe des Stipendiums beträgt Euro 1.300 monatlich. Kinderzulagen werden gemäß den Richtlinien der VolkswagenStiftung (analog DFG) gezahlt. Für Aufwendungen im Zusammenhang mit dem Arbeitsvorhaben stehen Sachmittel im Rahmen der Projektbewilligung zur Verfügung. Das Stipendium verpflichtet zur Teilnahme am Promovierendenkolloquium der HSFK.
Als Trägerin des Total E-Quality Prädikats fordert die HSFK qualifizierte Frauen verstärkt auf, sich zu bewerben. Bewerbungen aus dem Ausland sind erwünscht. Schwerbehinderte werden bei gleicher Eignung bevorzugt. Die Bewerbungsfrist endet am 01.04.2012.

Die Hessische Stiftung Friedens- und Konfliktforschung ist eine Stiftung öffentlichen Rechts und Mitglied der Leibniz-Gemeinschaft. Mit über 60 Mitarbeiterinnen und Mitarbeitern ist die HSFK das größte deutsche Friedensforschungsinstitut.

Ihre schriftliche Bewerbung richten Sie mit den üblichen Unterlagen und einem max. 10-seitigen Exposé Ihres Dissertationsvorhabens bitte an

Bianca Christoffer
Hessische Stiftung Friedens- und Konfliktforschung Baseler Straße 27-31 60329 Frankfurt/Main oder elektronisch an

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Politics of International Criminal Justice

Lessons from the International Criminal Court and the Special Court for Sierra Leone

3,4 May 2012
Freetown, Sierra Leone

International criminal justice has become a weapon in political struggles in different African states. International court and tribunals, whilst often portrayed as legal bastions immune from politics, have proven to be inherently political. Depending on the definition of what counts as ‘political’, the politics of international criminal justice can be found at different levels. For instance, international criminal courts are created by political decisions, adjudicate crimes which are frequently related to politics, and depend on a mysterious and seemingly magical ‘political will’ for the enforcement of their decisions. Moreover, recent studies have shown how the International Criminal Court has become implicated in political struggles by making a distinction between the friends and enemies of the international community which it purports to represent.

This conference studies the politics of international criminal justice at these different stages. Some of the main questions include:
• How should the politics of international criminal justice be conceptualized? What theoretical approaches are helpful in articulating the political aspects of criminal courts and tribunals?
• What lessons can be learned from experiences in countries affected by interventions of international criminal courts? What is the political role of international criminal courts in countries such as Sierra Leone, Uganda, Congo, Sudan, Central African Republic or Kenya?
• How can we improve the accountability of those engaged in the politics of international criminal justice?

The conference brings together academics from different disciplines, including international law and political science, and practitioners in the field of law and politics (including diplomats, politicians, judges, legal counsels). While its main focus is on the International Criminal Court and the Special Court for Sierra Leone, contributions from other areas of international criminal justice are welcomed as well.

Submissions and selection
If you would like to participate in the conference, please send us a 500-750 words abstract of the paper you plan to present before February 1st 2012. We will select a maximum of 10 papers that can be presented at the conference. Early submissions are welcomed. If you are invited to present, we would like to receive a short position paper two weeks before the conference. The position paper should be max. 2500 words, outlining the main argument.

Please send your paper proposal to:
Prof. dr. W.G. Werner

Conference fee
The fee for the conference is 100 Euro. The money from the fees will be used to provide financial support for scholars or practitioners from (West-)African countries coming to the conference. If you would like to receive such support, please let us know before February 15th 2012.
Attendees from African countries are entitled to a waiver of the fee.