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TLI Methods Lab: Transnational environmental regimes and the limits of deli...

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The Council Room, 1st Floor, King's Building

King's College London

Strand

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WC2R 2LS

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The Methods Lab is a unique seminar under the auspices of the Transnational Law Institute (TLI) at King’s College London. The Lab explores the process of imagining, developing and carrying out a research project. Presenters give an inside view into the laboratory of their own intellectual work, their methodology and resources, of the challenges in carrying out empirical research and paying adequate tribute to interdisciplinary boundaries and crossings. The Methods Lab sessions are open to everyone.

Title: Transnational environmental regimes and the limits of deliberative democracy

Speaker: Associate Professor Jaye Ellis, McGill University, Canada

Abstract: Transnational regulatory regimes, particularly non-state or hybrid regimes, must build their authority from the ground up, not being able to rely on the legitimating effect of a constitution that bestows authority to make and implement laws in the name and on behalf of a particular polis. Much of the literature on legitimation focuses on democratic processes, often taking a deliberative approach. Yet deliberation towards consensus as a means of grounding the authority of transnational regimes runs into several problems. This is particularly true of environmental regimes, as, in addition to the usual problems created by the nebulous, open-ended nature of the groups of actors who are or could be considered stakeholders, such regimes depend heavily on sophisticated and often inaccessible scientific information. Furthermore, social acceleration, accelerated rates of ecosystemic change, complexity, and uncertainly create a need for highly flexible regulatory approaches capable of rapid learning and adaptation. In this workshop, I wish to pose critical questions about the benefits of deliberative democratic approaches to the legitimation of transnational environmental regimes. In particular, I wish to examine the focus of deliberative approaches to legitimation on the moment of jurisgenesis. Of potentially greater importance are other moments, notably the development of policy-relevant scientific understanding of ecosystem effects (that is, well before the adoption of legal norms) and the consequences, both intended and unintended, of the implementation of legal norms.


Biography: Jaye Ellis is Associate Professor in the Faculty of Law and School of Environment, McGill University. She teaches public international law, international environmental law, and environmental epistemology and ethics. Current research projects focus on transnational law, intersections between law and science, rule of law in transnational and international spheres, and risk and uncertainty in public and private law. Recent publications include “Form meets Function: The Culture of Formalism and International Environmental Regimes,” Wouter Werner, Marieke de Hoon & Alexis Galán (eds), The Law of International Lawyers. Reading Martti Koskenniemi. (Cambridge University Press, 2017); “Political Economy and Environmental Law: A Cost-Benefit Analysis” in Ugo Mattei and John D. Haskell, eds, Research Handbook on Political Economy and Law (2015) 496-516; and “Stateless Law: From Legitimacy to Validity” in Helge Dedek and Shauna Van Praagh, eds, Stateless Law: Evolving Boundaries of a Discipline (2015) 133-142.

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The Council Room, 1st Floor, King's Building

King's College London

Strand

London

WC2R 2LS

United Kingdom

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