Universität Wien FIND

030208 KU Public Law & Institutional Transfer (2020S)

Formerly calied: Law & Politics of International Conflict Management

3.00 ECTS (2.00 SWS), SPL 3 - Rechtswissenschaften
Continuous assessment of course work


Note: The time of your registration within the registration period has no effect on the allocation of places (no first come, first served).


max. 20 participants
Language: English


Classes (iCal) - next class is marked with N

All sessions will take place at the times indicated in an online lecture format on Moodle. You must participate in these sessions.

Monday 09.03. 12:00 - 14:00 Seminarraum SEM62 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum 6.OG
Monday 16.03. 12:00 - 14:00 Seminarraum SEM62 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum 6.OG
Thursday 19.03. 12:00 - 14:00 Seminarraum SEM52 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum 5.OG
Monday 23.03. 12:00 - 14:00 Seminarraum SEM62 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum 6.OG
Thursday 26.03. 12:00 - 14:00 Seminarraum SEM52 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum 5.OG
Monday 30.03. 12:00 - 14:00 Seminarraum SEM61 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum 6.OG
Thursday 02.04. 12:00 - 14:00 Seminarraum SEM42 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum, 4.OG
Monday 04.05. 12:00 - 14:00 Seminarraum SEM63 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum 6.OG
Thursday 07.05. 12:00 - 14:00 Seminarraum SEM52 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum 5.OG
Monday 11.05. 12:00 - 14:00 Seminarraum SEM62 Schottenbastei 10-16, Juridicum 6.OG


Aims, contents and method of the course

The modern state that came into being in the wake of the Westphalian Peace in Europe subsequently spread, through both choice and coercion, to virtually the entire globe. The military and technological superiority of European societies acquired through the scientific and industrial revolutions allowed them to dominate and subjugate the rest of the world, but it is important to realise that the modern corporate state spread primarily because it was more effective and more efficient than traditional forms of political organisation. The modern administrative state offered capabilities and opportunities that other societies couldn’t do without, thus leading to sustained and ongoing efforts to transpose its constituent elements into different cultures and adapt them to local needs.

This course introduces you to these processes of transposition and adaptation of Western notions of law and governance to other parts of the world. To use a biological metaphor, concepts, institutions, organisational forms and mandates that had grown in a European cultural soil and in response to particular stimuli and interests were uprooted and replanted into foreign soil. Some of these plants flourished, often by adapting and transforming beyond recognition, while others withered. Here you will learn about this ecology of legal transplants and begin to become a gardener of comparative institutions.

Transplantation is a universal phenomenon and the central domain of comparative law. In this course, we draw many but not all examples from the tortuous modernisation process in the Muslim world. Its experience of sudden inferiority and humiliating domination is emblematic of many Southern societies. The resulting practical, ideational and psychological difficulties of introducing ‘best practices’ and ‘good governance’ into a competing traditional normative and social system are thus not uniquely Islamic but emblematic of the ‘buzzing, blooming confusion’ of modernity.

Assessment and permitted materials

The grade for this course consists of one written, two day, open-book book exam of maximum 2000 words excluding footnotes. You can write your answer in either German, English or French.

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

Students will have to answer two questions out of six, thus accommodating to some degree personal preferences. The exam is aimed to motivate a renewed engagement with the course material and to cement the retention of the above stated Learning Outcomes, which will guide grading. Special emphasis will be given to the mastery of comparative approaches.

Examination topics

The reading is clearly differentiated between mandatory and voluntary. While I will speak about some of the voluntary material in the lectures and class discussions, only the mandatory readings are necessary for exam purposes.

Reading list

Due to the special operating procedures at this time, all of this course will be offered electronically in a mixture of online lectures, guided self-study and reading. All the material is available on Moodle and here:

Association in the course directory

Last modified: Fr 06.05.2022 00:15