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The International Economic Constitution


Module description

The main aims of this module are to help you understand and critically assess the antecedents of global, public economic regulation with reference to bodies such as the WTO; supranational, public economic regulation with reference to bodies such as the EU; global, private economic regulation within the lex mercatoria and standardisation bodies such as the Codex Alimentarius; problems of interconnecting jurisdictions within the international global trade regime; and the concept of global democracy within the global economic constitution. You will also identify and critically assess legitimating theories for public and private global trade regimes: supremacy, the economic constitution, mutual recognition, reciprocal action, standardisation, conflict of laws, the regulatory state; particular problems of global trade regimes (scientification, redistributive issues, the growth of a global executive, risk and risk regulation); and particular problems of adjudication within a global trade regime with reference to the WTO panels, ECJ and inter-jurisdictional application of global/supranational norms.

Indicative module syllabus

  • The elements of the global constitution: GATT/WTO; supranational organisations (EU/NAFTA/African Union); lex mercatoria; private/public standardisation (eg Codex Alimentarius)
  • Theories of global constitutionalism: neo-liberal; ordo-liberal; the regulatory state; supremacy/mutual recognition/reciprocity; conflict of laws
  • Adjudication in the global constitution (case studies): risk (BSE, hormones, ‘precaution’); redistribution (Laval, Viking Rüffert); political adjudication between jurisdictions (AIDS)
  • The global executive state (expertise in the global economic constitution)
  • The democratisation of the global economic constitution