A Transatlantic Community of Law
Written by: Elaine Fahey
What concerns arise as to the EU and US agreeing a new trade deal? How should we understand the NSA/ Snowdon affair? What makes judges want to learn from each other across the Atlantic? How can the EU and US integrate their legal orders most optimally in the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)?
A new edited volume entitled A Transatlantic Community of Law: Legal Perspectives on the Relationship between the EU and US legal orders published this summer may shed light on these highly topical and salient questions of increasing public concern. Recent events have shown us how they are no longer purely ‘academic’ concerns.
‘A Transatlantic Community of Law’ includes contributions from politics, the judiciary, politicians and political scientist as well as legal scholars working in the field of European law. The editors felt that because of the broad-range of issues that transatlantic relations generate, such a collection of individuals made the project all the richer.
The publication arose from a multi-disciplinary conference held in Amsterdam in 2013 and the project grew considerably after this in depth and breadth- and contributors. The conference and later publication focussed on institutionalisation and developments in security and trade. Each of these areas was developed after the conference in the subsequent publication, so as to deepen its focus. For example, contributions were added as to accountability and legitimacy and further on federalism. The overall goal of the conference had been to expose and develop new ways of thinking about institutionalisation and transatlantic relations. Contrasting with other publications on transatlantic relations, the edited volume does not provide a comprehensive policy-based assessment field-by-field. The inclusion of novel socio-legal work, for example, was an important feature of the project, which the book reflects. Also the editors wanted to give substantial voice to EU law scholars on these matters, which gave the publication a different resonance and direction.