Multiplicity, it is now widely agreed, is a condition of the legal order beyond the state. Whether expressed in the language of regime complexity, fragmentation or (constitutional) pluralism, observers in both transnational law and international law have come to converge on the importance of going beyond a simple, unitary frame to capture the relations of different legalities in the global order. Yet what kind of law emerges from the ways in which these legalities interact is still far from understood, and contestation reigns on the normative assessment of the new constellation. This conference aims at tackling these questions. It asks: how do actors deal with conflicts and inconsistencies between different norms and layers of law? How do they construe the relations, and how are the conflicts processed – do conflicts persist or do they lead to adjustment and entanglement over time? To what extent are these normative relations framed as explicitly ‘legal’, and how? And what does this multiplicity mean for our understanding of ‘law’, ‘legal system’, and ‘legal order’? The law that arises out of multiplicity differs from the ideal type of modern law in its forms and institutions. The conference seeks to understand its dynamics as well as the (new) theoretical frames we need to capture it.

The conference, which will take place in Berlin on 6-8 July 2020, is organized by the Humboldt University, Berlin, and the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva, as part of the research group on Overlapping Spheres of Authority and Interface Conflicts in the Global Order. It is supported by the European Society of International Law.


We invite abstracts of up to 400 words for papers to be presented at the conference by 15 January 2020.
Further details on the conference and on the submission of abstracts can be found HERE.