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Vol 25 No 2 Feb/March 2020

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Constitutional Conversations in Europe: Actors, Topics and Procedures

Edited by: Catherine Van de Heyning, Maartje de Visser

ISBN13: 9781780680699
Published: October 2012
Publisher: Intersentia Publishers
Country of Publication: UK
Format: Paperback
Price: £90.00

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Relationships between national constitutional courts and the European Court of Justice have always been a fruitful topic for debate and conferences on this theme are often held at the height of conflict or on the cusp of change. We believe that much insight may be gained by considering this relationship in the absence of either so as to allow for reasoned contemplation and reflection. This accordingly is the aim of the proposed edited volume. What is more, the book will reconsider the relationship between constitutional courts and the ECJ from a broad constitutional law perspective.

First, the book will include an explicit horizontal comparative dimension, considering how various Member States approach the conversation with the ECJ. Second, the book will address three constitutional issues relevant to understanding constitutional conversations in Europe. These are, in consecutive order: (1) the ways in which conversations between national constitutional courts and the ECJ take place, with a focus on Article 267 TFEU as the primary procedural form of dialogue and the dialogue-through-case-law; (2) the content of conversations between constitutional courts and the ECJ. Initially, dialogues focused on fundamental rights as a key example of common constitutional principles, whereas we now observe an emerging trend of talking about constitutional identity; and (3) expanding the conversation: the influence of the European mandate of ordinary courts on the position of national constitutional courts, with a particular emphasis on the live issue of 'double preliminary references'. These three substantive themes are preceding by four chapters that offer more general normative reflections on the notion and legitimacy of 'dialogues'.