Virtual Visiting Scholars Series

The Centre for Commercial Law & Regulatory Studies (CLARS) is pleased to introduce its new Virtual Visiting Scholars program, which aims to attract outstanding young scholars from around the world to present their current work and engage online with Monash Law School researchers. The program contributes to enriching our research environment and provides networking opportunities for faculty members. This is particularly important when traditional travel is not possible during the COVID-19 pandemic. We hope that the program will contribute to the development of ongoing research relationships with other scholars and universities, both nationally and internationally.

Anna Beckers, Assistant Professor of Private Law and Legal Methodology at Maastricht University, The Netherlands

15 October 2020

Monash Law HDR students and academic staff can access a recording of this event here

Monash Law staff can access a recording of this event here

'Towards a legal conception of the global value chain: Lead firm duties, liability and review of trade practices'

Global value chains are a much-discussed organizational form of global trade. Social scientists, economists and geographers have revealed that global trade not only takes place predominantly in the form of global value chains, but also that this form of organization implies a qualitative shift in the way that global markets are organized. Organizationally, global value chains combine competitive elements with control by lead firms, they further entail a move from an industry-centric to a value-centric perspective of production and they are pivotal on a macro-level for amongst others economic development and sustainability. In legal scholarship, global value chains have only recently attracted attention as a regulatory object. Most current research is linked to the business and human rights debate with respect to carving out duties and liability of firms for their value chains and to product-centric legislation that seeks to oblige importers of risk products or from risk areas to conduct due diligence among the value chain. In addition, a few legal scholars look at the contractual dimension of global value chains.

In my research, I seek to link these regulatory developments to the overall idea of a holistic legal-doctrinal conception of global value chains. For this purpose, my talk entails an overview of the legal areas that I consider relevant for understanding and regulating global value chains to then focus on three levels where value chains become legally conceptualized: the micro-level of lead firm duties, the meso-level of liability rules within and of value chains and the macro-level of the review of the underlying trade structure. These three building blocks will be approached with a view to how they can capture the structure of global value chains, provide entry points for any normative re-orientation along objectives like sustainability, and how the levels are intertwined within the legal system.

About the scholar

Anna Beckers' areas of expertise are company and commercial law. She is specifically working in these areas on questions related to corporate social responsibility/business and human rights, corporate governance and global value chains. Her research combines doctrinal comparative analyses with theoretical approaches that use in social and regulation theory as a basis. She is author of Enforcing Corporate Social Responsibility, Hart Publishing 2015 and has been publishing widely amongst others on corporate social responsibility in EU consumer law (eg in Common Market Law Review), fair business taxation (Yearbook of European Law) and human rights in corporate governance (with Oxford University Press). Currently, Anna is working on a large-scale research project that seeks to develop a doctrinal reconstruction of global value chains in private law.

Shelly Kreiczer-Levy, Professor of Law
College of Law and Business, Ramat Gan, Israel

7 September 2020

Monash Law HDR students and academic staff can access a recording of this event here

Monash Law staff can access a recording of this event here

'Destabilized Property: Property Law in the Sharing Economy'

New consumption patterns, commonly known as the sharing or access economy, are changing the way we think of property. Consumers are losing interest in ownership. They prefer to access property when needed on a casual, short-term basis. Meanwhile, owners are using the property they do own differently. They are willing to rent out their private, intimate, personally used possessions repeatedly to complete strangers for short periods. Powerful online platforms mediate, control and constitute these transactions.

These processes profoundly challenge contemporary property law. Does the rise of access render our conception of property obsolete? What are the normative and theoretical implications of choosing casual short-term use of property over stable use? What are the relational and social complications of blurring the line between personal and commercial use of property? What is the role of platforms in shaping property use and how should we regulate platform power?

In this talk, based on my book Destabilized Property: Property Law in the Access Economy (Cambridge University Press, 2019), I will discuss the impact of new consumption technologies on property’s role as a social institution, the advantages and vulnerabilities created by access-based property use, and offer guidelines for law reform. I will also discuss the possible implications of the Covid-19 pandemic on the sharing economy and property practices.

About the Scholar

Shelly Kreiczer-Levy is a Professor of Law at the College of Law and Business, in Ramat Gan, Israel. She holds an LL. B. (2004) and a PhD (2009) from Tel Aviv University law school. Prof. Kreiczer-Levy clerked for Supreme Court Chief Justice, Aharon Barak (2003-2004). She served as the President of the Israeli Association of Private Law, and was the recipient of the Zeltner Award for Young Scholars (2016). She has taught at Cornell Law School, and served as a Visiting Researcher at Yale Law School, and a Visiting Scholar at both Harvard Law School and Emory Law School. She is a co-editor of the peer review journal, Journal of Property, Law and Society. Her work has been published in leading law reviews including Wisconsin Law Review, Yale Law and Policy Review, Maryland Law Review, and Law and Social Inquiry. Her book Destabilized Property: Property Law in the Sharing Economy was published by Cambridge University Press (2019).