The international legal order faces different crises; multilateralism is tested in many ways. After globalization and a financial crisis, we are currently living in a pandemic while the climate crisis is threatening the future of the planet. These crises highlight the most vulnerable and their daily challenges that existed before.

However, in times of crisis, decisions must be made with little time to consider and based on great uncertainty. Under such conditions, a (legal) system must possess resilience. But what does this actually mean? In general, resilience refers to an ability to recover from or adjust easily to change. How can laws, a legal system, maintain and perpetuate itself, while at the same time learning and adapting to new circumstances? The laws and systems have to adjust to these new circumstances quickly, based on old norms and procedures, respecting hierarchies and competencies. What about international institutions and proceedings? Can they contribute to normative resilience and a resilient approach to crises based on law(s)?

In the course of the research seminar, we will look into how states and the international legal order have reacted to previous crises. 9/11 and the following war against terror have put the entire international system and its values at risk. How resilient was the international system? Is there a resilient approach to these crises based on law? What are the lessons learned that we can apply to current and future crises?

We will look into a selection of crises (9/11, 2009 financial crises, digitization/cyber, climate crises, covid-19) and how the law has reacted in order to identify resilient approaches to the current crises.

An introductory meeting will take place in April 2021 to introduce and assign individual topics. At the beginning of May 2021, a compulsory introduction to the preparation of a seminar and examination term paper will be offered (research, citation, reference management). The topics are assigned individually depending on interest, students can also propose their own topics for the seminar paper.

The seminar will take place (virtually or in presence) in June / July 2021.

All participants are expected to present on their respective topics during the seminar (in English). Students can submit a paper (in German or English) in order to receive a „Seminarschein“ in terms of the „Promotionsordnung“. Additionally, students can write a „Examenshausarbeit im SPB X (Völker- und Europarecht)“. Students are advised to have written a preparatory paper (Seminararbeit) before they write their „SPB-Hausarbeit“. In case a student has not written such a Seminararbeit yet, there is an option within this Seminar to do both and to get feedback in between both papers.

The number of places for the participating students is limited. Regular registrations are made via Stine by booking the seminar. If you want to write an SPB Hausarbeit, please register in advance by email to Registrations are still possible during the introductory meeting in April, provided there are still places available.