Signature Plan: Global Law and Governance
In our transforming societies, law and governance have come under pressure. This research program takes on the rethinking of law and governance and also offers ways forward. We do so starting from the major societal challenges of the 21st century.
The signature plan Global Law and Governance is an open research program, hosting and facilitating a range of projects and initiatives in the area of law and governance. Global Law and Governance takes as its starting point societal challenges and wicked problems such as: climate change, further (economic) globalization and increasing inequalities, the growing importance of social media, the Covid pandemic, and migration. These challenges and problems necessitate rethinking law and governance issues such as the role of human rights, democratic practices, and the regulation of non-state actors. GLG researchers, independently and in collaboration with others, develop and execute state of the art research that helps to improve our understanding of and advance our societies.
- For example, researchers in Constitutionalizing in the Anthropocene grapple with the legal and normative complexities and controversies that arise due to the transformations of the Anthropocene.
- Another Global Law and Governance project, BOLSTER, investigates how marginalized communities are affected by European Green Deal-related policies.
Rethinking law and governance
Researchers in Global Law and Governance share an interest in rethinking the publicness of public law and governance. Processes of globalization and the decline of national welfare states have been transforming the societies that provided the foundations for public law and public administration. Law and governance have come under pressure and necessitate rethinking, but also offer ways forward. Legitimate public authority is needed, from the global to the local, but often lacking. Innovations in law and governance help shift our understanding of what public authority might be. The focus of research in the program is on the way institutions, networks, organizations and professionals in law and governance deal with, adapt to, and are resilient in the face of fundamental societal challenges like, for instance, climate change, creeping crises and destructive conflicts. Our research aims to understand changes internal to law and governance and those crossing and forming their boundaries and the way law and governance actors deal with or aggravate challenges. Legal and institutional steering do not stand outside of the challenges facing us. Nor does research. We thus investigate not only to understand, but also to critique and improve practices that confront these challenges, asking, for instance,
- how the European emissions trading system can be adapted in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture, or
- how strategic litigators can affect the reform and implementation of law through their transnational collaborations (Translitigate project).
Law and governance as a network of normative orders
Global Law and Governance entails inquiry oriented to articulating a “grammar” of law and governance which does not consider the state as the norm but thinks of law and governance in terms of a network of interacting, competing, and overlapping normative orders - from the local to the global. Global Law and Governance speaks to a pluri-centric approach to law and governance in which the global manifests itself locally and the local is the breeding ground for the globalization of law and governance. We investigate how challenges manifest themselves, both in particular contexts and at the conceptual level. We draw inspiration from and compare across different sites, constitutional frameworks and jurisdictions.
- In the research project CONTRA, for instance, we investigate how conflicts over the development of urban areas play out in four countries, each with their own legal framework.
Range of disciplines
In the Global Law and Governance program we make use of a range of disciplines, research strategies and methods. Disciplines include (various areas of) law, sociology, history and philosophy, as well as multidisciplinary fields such as urban studies and public administration. Strategies include case studies, doctrinal research, and discourse analysis; and methods innovative ones like “go-along” and “drama labs.” In a large part of our research, we compare contemporary cases internationally. Historical research methods also feature prominently in the Global Law and Governance research community.
- In CaPANES, for instance, we look into features for and historical changes in economic sovereignty in cities of commerce.
- To improve the quality and relevance of our research, we build transdisciplinary collaborations with a large range of actors, including local governments, ministries, civil society actors, international institutions and other universities. In REDRESS, for instance, researchers and collaboration partners like the Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management, LSA Bewoners (network of residential groups) and the VNG (Association of Netherlands Municipalities) look at new forms of democracy.
On corporate human rights and environmental harm in armed conflict02nd January 2023
With support from the Netherlands Network of Human Rights Research (NNHRR), the Department of Public Law and Governance organized a symposium on the involvement of business actors in human rights and environmental harm in situations of armed conflict and the barriers victims encounter in seeking effective redress.
Blog: Theatre experiments in the CONTRA Kick-Off week14th October 2022
Conflict can be a good thing. That is CONTRA’s point of departure, CONTRA standing for Conflicts in Transformations. Amongst others, conflicts can make sure that different perspectives on problems can be heard and urgency for policy-making created.
Research update: Signature plan Global Law and Governance in academic year 2021-202214th October 2022
Between the Summer of 2021 and October of 2022, many things have happened in the Global Law and Governance (GLG) signature plan. The number of research projects and researchers has significantly increased, just as a variety of research activities.
Most recent research output of Global Law & Governance.
More about the Signature Plan: Global Law & Governance you can find in the