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  • Author: Jan Klabbers
  • Publication Date: 02-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: European Journal of International Law
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: The theory of functionalism dominates the law of international organizations, explaining why organizations have the powers they possess, why they can claim privileges and immunities, and often how they are designed as well. Yet, the theory of functionalism is rarely spelt out in any detail, and its origins have remained under-explored. The purpose of the present article is to outline how functionalism came about by focusing on the 'pre-history' of international institutional law. To that end, the article studies the work of a number of late 19th, early 20th century authors on the law of international organizations, paying particular attention to the writings of Paul Reinsch. It turns out that functionalism, as developed by Reinsch, was inspired by his familiarity with colonial administration: colonialism and international organization both manifested cooperation between states. While this is no reason to discard functionalism, it does provide an argument for viewing international organizations more critically than functionalism habitually does.
  • Topic: Law
  • Author: Stéphanie Dagron
  • Publication Date: 02-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: European Journal of International Law
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: Lawrence O. Gostin's new book begins with the sentence '[t]his is a unique moment to offer a systematic account of global health law' and he is right. The book under review is published at a time when the most influential international institutions are emphasizing the necessity for multilateral cooperation in the field of public health. For example, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) addresses this point in its current deliberations on the post-2015 Millennium Development Goals Agenda. Contemporary globalization has irrevocably made borders porous to capital, services, goods, and persons. Global social, economic, and political changes, such as increasing industrialization, urbanization, environmental degradation, migration, drug trafficking, and the marketing strategies of transnational corporations (e.g., in the food, pharmaceutical, and tobacco industries) have a significant impact on health. This impact is transnational and intersectoral: global health hazards go beyond the control of individual nation states and extend beyond the restricted field of health care.
  • Topic: Economics, Health, Migration, United Nations, Food, Law
  • Author: Birgit Lode
  • Publication Date: 02-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: European Journal of International Law
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: Already back in 1987 the Brundtland report by the World Commission on Environment and Development stressed that '[n]ational and international law is being rapidly outdistanced by the accelerating pace and expanding scale of impacts on the ecological basis of development'. Since then international environmental law regimes have multiplied and an up-to-date introduction to the constantly evolving field of international environmental law is very welcome, not least due to the lack of equally concise alternatives in the introductory literature. Aimed at filling this gap, Timo Koivurova with his Introduction to International Environmental Law chooses an approach well suited to the student readers he primarily intends to address. The book dispenses with footnotes, tables of treaties, and a comprehensive bibliography. Instead, a manageable number of endnotes accompany each chapter, preceded by a set of questions and research tasks, and followed by suggestions for further reading and websites addressing the respective topics. Thereby, the subject matter is presented in the most general fashion possible without making concessions to the scientific nature of the book, allowing '[i]nternational environmental law and politics [to] speak for themselves' (at xix). Moreover, in order to make the information provided easily accessible and comprehensible by a broad range of readers the book includes several boxes going into more detail on, e.g., specific cases, conventions, institutions, or environmental disasters. It illustrates topics and sometimes presents them from a different angle by adding photographs and figures, clarifying essentials as well as sparking the readers' imagination.
  • Topic: Environment, Politics, Law
  • Author: J.H.H. Weiler
  • Publication Date: 02-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: European Journal of International Law
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: Fifty years have passed since the European Court of Justice gave what is arguably its most consequential decision: Van Gend en Loos. The UMR de droit comparé de Paris, the European Journal of International Law (EJIL), and the International Journal of Constitutional Law (I•CON) decided to mark this anniversary with a workshop on the case and the myriad of issues surrounding it. In orientation our purpose was not to 'celebrate' Van Gend en Loos, but to revisit the case critically; to problematize it; to look at its distinct bright side but also at the dark side of the moon; to examine its underlying assumptions and implications and to place it in a comparative context, using it as a yardstick to explore developments in other regions in the world. The result is a set of articles which both individually and as a whole demonstrate the legacy and the ongoing relevance of this landmark decision.
  • Topic: Development, Law
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Morten Rasmussen
  • Publication Date: 02-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: European Journal of International Law
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: This is the abstract only. The full article is published in Int J Constitutional Law (2014) 12 (1): 136–163 doi:10.1093/icon/mou006 Did the famous Van Gend en Loos judgment constitute a breakthrough for a constitutional practise in European law or was it merely drawing the logical legal consequences of earlier case law and of the Treaties of Rome? Based on comprehensive archival studies, this article argues that neither earlier case law nor the Treaties of Rome can fully account for the judgment. Instead, Van Gend en Loos represented a genuine revolution in European law. Prompted by the legal service of the European Commission, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) took a decisive step towards addressing two major problems of international public law, namely the lack of uniform application of European law by national courts across the six member states and the lack of primacy granted to international law in several member states. The judgment was based on a new teleological and constitutional understanding of the Treaties of Rome developed by the legal service, and took the first step towards establishing an alternative enforcement system. The ECJ would already in 1964 take the second step by introducing primacy in the Costa v. E.N.E.L. judgment. The new enforcement system remained highly fragile, however, due to the dependency on the cooperation of national courts through the preliminary reference system. As a result, the full effects of the Van Gend en Loos judgment were only felt after the Single European Act (1986) pushed reluctant national governments and courts to finally come to terms with the legal order the ECJ had developed.
  • Topic: Government, Law
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Sophie Robin-Olivier
  • Publication Date: 02-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: European Journal of International Law
  • Institution: European Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: Focusing on the case law developed by the Court of Justice of the European Union since Van Gend en Loos, this article contends that three important shifts occurred concerning the effects of EU law in national courts since that case was decided. First, the existence of a particular category of ('direct effect') EU norms, which implies a process of selection among EU law provisions, is no longer as problematic as the method of comparison and combination of norms in judicial reasoning that has become a vehicle for the penetration of EU law in courts. Second, the possibility for individuals to claim (subjective) rights on the basis of the Treaty is overshadowed by questions concerning obligations imposed by the Treaty on individuals, and more generally, on the methods through which this horizontal effect occurs. Third, the duty for national courts to apply EU law provisions directly (direct enforcement) is now coupled with one prior question that these courts have to address, and which has become much more sensitive than before in view of the growing centrality of fundamental rights' protection in the EU system: the question of the applicability of EU and national (constitutional) law. Having examined these three shifts, the article concludes that it has become urgent to reconsider the effects of EU law in member states in order to avoid a decline of individual rights and freedoms resulting from EU law enforcement. Thus, 'Revisiting Van Gend en Loos' leads to a reflection on the hypothesis, in which EU law should yield and national courts should be granted more discretion, when confronted with the resisting substance of national law (especially fundamental rights or freedoms protected by national constitutions).
  • Topic: Law
  • Political Geography: Europe