Rethinking Nordic Law - Nordic court procedure and cooperation in the age of globalization

The legal systems in the Nordic countries face two challenges: vanishing legal cooperation – particularly in the form of pan-Nordic legislation - and increased Europeanisation and globalization of law and legal practice. Yet, European law does not preclude Nordic cooperation and new forms of cooperation may reinvigorate Nordic law and legal culture. This project aims to sketch a map for Nordic law for the 21st century. It will do so by a case study of the development, current state and future of Nordic court procedure using a legal cultural method.

Court procedure has not been subject to pan-Nordic legislation and the cultural differences between East- and West-Nordic countries are visible. Yet, there is a clear Nordic element in court procedures, procedural law scholarship and even in court and judicial culture.

The project aims to
1) identify parameters of Nordic legal culture and assess the Nordic elements (transparency, informality, open norms, homogeneity) in the national legal cultures,
2) discuss how Europeanization and globalization of law (supra-national law, judicial competition) and diversified dispute resolution processes (alternative dispute resolution, collective redress) impact Nordic court procedure
3) sketch a map for 21st century Nordic law and cooperation in law and practice of court procedure.

Two workshops will be arranged, the first in Örebro, Sweden, in September 2018 and the second in Tromsø in 2019.

The first workshop has a theoretical approach. During it, parameters for Nordic court procedure, relating to legislation and practices, are identified. The focus is on contemporary law, but a historical overview is necessary to lay the ground for the discussions. The rest of the presentations related to this topic will discuss current cooperation and contrast and compare Nordic cooperation with other international cooperation in the field. Understanding the current state of Nordic courts, Nordic court culture and cooperation on court procedure, requires combining and adapting tools from comparative law with an analysis of the current changes induced primarily by increasing internationalization.

In the second workshop, the parameters and analytical tools developed are used in a closer analysis of current regulation, thinking and practices of Nordic court procedure. The workshopfocuses on a more detailed analysis of the law and practices of Nordic court procedure, and cooperation in the field. Particular focus will be on the impact of Europeanisation. Selected topics are inter alia: the influence on European human rights law on Nordic procedure; the role of EU membership; comparison of Nordic court procedure, including the structure of the court systems; the role of Supreme Courts; inter-court dialogue; use of international case law or the like. The presentations will draw on the tools developed in the first workshop and provide an opportunity to expand on recent studies. How does Europeanisation influence Nordic procedural law, and from which countries are new influences sought? Is there a Nordic legal culture in terms of the role of court, and is there a Nordic court-culture? How can court culture be conceptualized in current legal systems?

The workshop gathers researchers in procedural law and judges working with Nordic cooperation, aspects of internationalization and new types of procedures, such as alternative dispute resolution, in particular court-connected mediation and online dispute resolution. The participants will discuss three topics in depth. As the phenomena studied interact, the workshop program will promote discussion integrating the main topics. The workshop ends in a discussion on the future of Nordic court procedure and judicial culture, and in identifying novel forms of Nordic cooperation fit for our time.

The workshops series is financed by a grant from NOS-HS.

Anna Nylund directs the project in cooperation with professor Laura Ervo, Örebro University and professor Pia Letto-Vanamo, University of Helsinki.


Ansvarlig for prosjektet: Anna Nylund