Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Lecture: Lindseth on "Supranational Organisations"

On October 29, 2015, Peter Lindseth (Univ. of Connecticut - Law) will deliver a lecture at the Centre for European and International Legal Affairs, School of Law, Queen Mary University of London on "Supranational Organisations." Here's the idea:
This talk builds on Professor Lindseth’s chapter, ‘Supranational Organizations’, forthcoming in the ‘Oxford Handbook of International Organizations’ (Cogan, Hurd, & Johnstone eds.), as well as his monograph ‘Power and Legitimacy: Reconciling Europe and the Nation-State’ (OUP 2010). Professor Lindseth argues that supranational organisations (SNOs) – most importantly the EU – are best understood, in legal-historical terms, as an extension of administrative governance on the national level. Although exercising extensive normative power across a whole range of regulatory domains, SNOs are unable to mobilize significant resources in their own right, whether fiscal (taxing, spending, and borrowing) or human (policing, defence, i.e., coercion whether internal or external). The EU, qua SNO, ultimately depends on democratic and constitutional legitimacy derived from, and mediated through, the executive, legislative, and judicial bodies of the member states. This ‘separation of power and legitimacy’ is the key indicator of the EU’s ultimately ‘administrative’ character, and it has profound implications for its capacity to act in an autonomous manner. The theoretical perspective animating Professor Lindseth’s work is born of a particular historical understanding of the evolution of public law and institutions in the North Atlantic world over the course of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. This talk will explore that understanding, while also noting some of its potential consequences, particularly with regard to some of the crises (the Eurozone, refugees) currently facing the EU.