IGLP: The Workshop

MADRID, SPAIN | JULY 17-23, 2016

Madrid, Spain cityscape above Gran Via shopping street.

The Workshop

complutense ICEI Logo Santander Universities

The IGLP convened its 7th global Workshop for young scholars and university faculty in Madrid in July 2016, organized in collaboration with the Complutense Institute for International Studies, Completense University of Madrid. Scholars from around the world came together for a week of serious collaboration and intensive debate with our global senior mentoring faculty. The core of the Workshop was comprised of a series of intensive writing workshops to facilitate peer-to-peer conversations in small groups with careful mentoring from the faculty. As part of this, participants engaged with each another and with faculty about a current research project. The Workshop concluded with a one-day Conference addressing crucial issues of contemporary world political economy convened by UCM Rector Carlos Andradas.

This initiative built on the close link between Harvard and Complutense University forged more than twenty-five years ago through the establishment of the Real Colegio Complutensea joint venture by our two universities. IGLP’s new relationship with the Complutense Institute for International Studies further extends and enriches this collaboration.

The global Workshop was generously hosted and sponsored by Banco Santander, through Santander Universitieswhich has long been a friend and sponsor of the Institute and our Workshop, supporting our growing global network of innovative academics working on the most pressing issues of global law and policy. Santander Universities maintains a stable alliance with close to 1,200 academic institutions in 21 countries. The bank has been collaborating with Complutense University since 1997 and Harvard Law School since 2010. We are pleased to bring the Workshop they joined us in establishing six years ago home to Madrid.

The Streams

Please click on the Stream title below to view the descriptions.

Comparative Law and Critique: the Politics of Reception

Global legal practice is comparative legal practice. Legal regimes for global political, social and economic life have been forged in the interactions among numerous legal traditions, both within and between countries. Therefore, engaging with diverse legal systems and understanding relations between them is a crucial professional skill. “Comparative law” has traditionally been the place to study differences between legal cultures and alternate solutions to the functionally similar needs of modern economic life. This is no longer sufficient. Diverse transnational regimes (international economic law, public international law, private international law) and the legal orders structuring different economic sectors (the entertainment industry, the automotive industry, the financial industry) also have different legal “cultures.” Differences between legal arrangements reflect alternate political choices and reflect divergent outcomes to social struggle as much as they embody distinct “cultures” or functional “solutions” to common problems. Navigating the world of law today demands the renewal of comparative legal study: new attention to professional styles, shared epistemologies and modes of reasoning; a foregrounding of the social and political choices involved in different legal arrangements; and a sensitivity to the plurality of ethical commitments embedded in divergent legal regimes. Rather than assuming technical similarity or cultural difference, this approach to comparative law enhances sensitivity to the ethics and politics of legal and cultural differences and to the significance of asymmetric dynamics and perspectives in shaping them.

Finance, Banking, and International Liquidity

The stream on money, finance and banking reviews approaches the current global financial architecture as an extension of the constitutional project of a global finance capitalism. We propose a political and institutional analysis of this global financial architecture.

In a first part, the stream will consider the production of money as a process disconnected from the re-productive needs of communities, societies and economies. We shall consider the extension of debt and certain legal institutions emanating from particular legal traditions at the basis of such extension. This part considers legal techniques to interpret and understand money and credit as source of money.

The second part of the stream will review the privatization of the production of money. A logic allegedly inherent the legal institutions seems to drive the process. Methods of critical legal analysis help us to interpret this as the core of the constitutional project of global finance.

The third part of the stream reviews the global banking system as institutional framework for the extension of credit. We want to leave behind the ideological attitudes of mainstream economics and attempt to pierce  the veils of a public discourse conditioned by these ideological attitudes. Its alleged independence renders the financial system, with banks at its core, independent from the constitutional mechanisms of controlling power. The EU is the striking example of this development. We shall therefore focus the conversation of the third part on the development within Europe.

Human Rights, International Law and Violence

This stream will explore the relationship between law – including international law and the law of human rights — and violence.   Law is often imagined as a limit on violence, a mode of repairing what violence has rent asunder, of punishing those who have trespassed the acceptable limits for violence.   Law is also itself violent, legitimates violence and facilitates the exercise of violent power by individuals and nations. We will explore these relationships by focusing on contemporary anti-violence work, post-conflict reconciliation efforts, and economic and social rights advocacy.

Latin American Law in Global Context

International law –as a legal system governing inter-state relations as well as a discourse justifying order and peace between sovereign states– presents itself as universal. But is it? We will examine the history of international law in Latin America as an example of its simultaneous universality and particularity. We will explore the legacies of 16th century pre-Columbian intellectuals, of international law in the struggles for independence and nation building and the emergence of a Latin-American regional identity during the 20th century. We ask whether a Latin American perspective of international law might offer a response to the region’s problems, from poverty to violence, migration or to the war on drugs.

Law and Economic Development

This Stream investigates legal reform strategies geared towards inducing economic growth and social welfare in developing countries. We will consider a range of approaches to government and markets and the influence of international legal regimes for trade, investment and human rights. We will explore the role of law in economic and social theories of development, the global and intellectual context that channels the range of development reform, and recent shifts in development theory and state practice.   We will focus particular attention on choices: alternate legal arrangements which may open alternate trajectories for development with different patterns of inequality or social justice.

Law and Money

The stream explores the global financial architecture as mechanism of integration within a hegemonic political and economic system. The financial system plays a central role in the operation of coercive and often compulsory institutional arrangements. We will explore the potential role for critical analyses of law to identify and help construct institutional alternatives. Might an alternative set of legal arrangements for finance help to ground alternative forms of political and economic life?

Law and the Legacies of Colonialism

This Stream will explore the history, meaning and significance of unequal encounters in global society with particular reference to Spain’s history of engagement with and by other regions of the world.  In particular, we will ask how we might deepen our understanding of the history of colonialism to enrich our understanding of contemporary patterns of global legal ordering, as well as political-economic ordering.

Theorizing War in Social and Legal Thought

This stream will explore the range of intellectual and analytic methods that have animated innovative, heterodox and critical work in global law and policy. We will pay particular attention to the traditions of social thought and philosophy as they have influenced legal and policy analysis, of socio-legal and sociological analysis, and of critical traditions within the legal field.

Poverty and Inequality

This stream will examine the distributive role of legal ideas, legal norms and legal institutions as they affect the incidence of poverty and inequality.  Through theoretical readings and case analyses, we will map the relationship of law to poverty using various methods, including socio-legal analysis of the distribution of formal or official law, examination of the use of law in struggles over rent in extractive industries and global value chains, and the potential for various rights regimes to strengthen or weaken these dynamics.  Our goal will be to offer  an overview of critical legal methods for examining law’s role in poverty and inequality, particularly in the developing world.

Science and Technology Studies

This Stream will focus on the relationships among science, technology, and political power in contemporary societies. It will draw on the field of science and technology studies to help us better understand how the modern state’s capacity to produce and use scientific knowledge influences, and is influenced by, the production and maintenance of political order.

The Transnational Economy: Labor

The past few decades have seen major shifts in the architecture of the global economy, characterized by the geographical fragmentation of production, the globalization of investment and finance, and the incorporation of new countries, firms and workers into global production chains and networks. While these processes are commonly viewed in terms of the removal of legal barriers to global exchange, an alternative perspective conceptualizes them as the conscious creation of global markets through new legal regimes that encourage new social and economic practices. This stream will accordingly investigate the relationship between national and international legal regimes and contemporary production strategies, drawing on methodological tools from legal studies and comparative political economy.

Climate Change, Energy and Sustainability

This is always a very important topic but particularly after the last international summit in Paris. The main subjects are the effects of climate change on life and economics, the efforts required to control it, the commitments of governments, the special treatment of underdeveloped countries, and the emergence of international rules and environmental laws.

The European Crisis and Further Integration

Europe is experiencing serious problems with very slow growth and the absence of a fiscal policy to accompany quantitative monetary easing. Growing problems are coming from the Brexit, the economic situation of Greece and the political instability of Spain and Ireland. Finally, the current issues with immigration and refugees are resulting in less, rather than more integration. The future of Europe is in danger.

Globalization, Transnational Corporations and Partnership Agreements

The ability of TNCs to avoid taxes all over the world is a cause for concern for all nations and multilateral organizations, resulting in a call for improved and more general rules. On the other hand, TPP and TTIP are the objects of strong discussion and opposing positions among economists and lawyers. By their supporters they are seen as a means to improve international trade and capital flows and, subsequently, globalization. By those who oppose them though, they are seen as a mechanism to pave the way for multinational companies.

The Faculty

Faculty members from institutions around the globe joined us during the Workshop to contribute in a variety of ways:

Aziza Ahmed (Northeastern University School of Law)
Isabel Álvarez (Universidad Complutense de Madrid)
Amaya Alvez (Universidad de Concepción)
Arnulf Becker (Brown University)
José María Beneyto (Gómez-Acebo & Pombo Abogados, S.L.P. and University Institute for European Studies)
Yishai Blank (Tel Aviv University, Buchman Faculty of Law)
Dan Brinks (University of Texas Law School)
Emilio Cerdá (Universidad Complutense de Madrid)
Madeline Chiam (Melbourne Law School)
Matt Craven (SOAS, University of London)
Dan Danielsen (Northeastern University School of Law)
Chris Desan (Harvard Law School)
Karen Engle (University of Texas Law School)
Luis Eslava (Kent Law School)
Michael Fakhri (University of Oregon School of Law)
José Carlos Fariñas (Universidad Complutense de Madrid)
Isabel Feichtner (Goethe Universität, Frankfurt am Main)
Günter Frankenberg (Goethe Universität, Frankfurt am Main)
Clara Belén García Fernández-Muro (Universidad Complutense de Madrid)
Chris Gevers (KwaZulu University)
Vanja Hamzíc (SOAS, University of London)
Ben Hurlbut (Arizona State University)
Jason Jackson (Wharton, University of Pennsylvania)
Sheila Jasanoff (Harvard Kennedy School)
Ratna Kapur (Jindal Global University)
Akira Kohsaka (Kwansei Gakuin University)
Outi Korhonen (University of Turku)
David Kennedy (Harvard Law School)
Andrew Lang (London School of Economics and Political Science)
Roy Kreitner (Tel Aviv University, Buchman Faculty of Law)
Zinaida Miller (McGill University)
Rafael Myro (Universidad Complutense de Madrid)
Vasuki Nesiah
(New York University)
Scott Newton (SOAS, University of London)
John Ohnesorge (University of Wisconsin)
Liliana Obregon (Universidad de Los Andes)
Rose Parfitt (Melbourne Law School)
James Parker (Melbourne Law School)
Charlie Peevers (Harvard Kennedy School)
Nicolas Perrone (Universidad Externado de Colombia)
Sundhya Pahuja (Melbourne Law School)
Brishen Rogers (Temple Law School)
Rafael Salas (Universidad Complutense de Madrid)
Hani Sayed (American University in Cairo)
Osama Siddique (Policy Research Network, Pakistan)
Simón Sosvilla (Universidad Complutense de Madrid)
Leopold Specht (Specht and Partner Law Firm, Vienna)
Lucie White (Harvard Law School)