Choice Architecture in Democracies – Behavioural Economics Meets Constitutional Law. Verfassungsblog Conference, January 13/14, 2015, Berlin

“Nudging” is all the rage in German government. The concept of designing choice architectures for consumers was developed by University of Chicago economist Richard H. Thaler and Harvard Law School Professor Cass R. Sunstein in their 2008 book “Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth, and Happiness”.  Heiko Maas, the Federal Minister of Justice, last month ran a conference with Cass Sunstein on the art of nudging and Angela Merkel, the chancellor, recently hired a bunch of behavioural economists to help her design better policies. Verfassungsblog, Germany’s blawg on matters constitutional, has organized an interdisciplinary conference on the topic. It kicks off with a lecture by Cass Sunstein tonight. Continue reading

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Happy Birthday, Verfassungsblog!

Verfassungsblog, Germany’s blog “on matters constitutional” started five years ago. Initially Maximilian Steinbeis’ solo effort, it has evolved into a joint venture with Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin and Humboldt Universität Berlin. In addition, more and more content is published in German and English, making Verfassungsblog a unique resource for current debates on constitutional matters in Germany and the European Union, such as the TTIP debate. All the best, Verfassungsblog!

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Transatlantic Investment Protection: EU Online Consultation and Verfassungsblog Online Symposium

Investment protection and investment arbitration are getting unprecedented public attention in this country, across all kinds of media – the TTIP even made it into the heute show, a weekly satirical news show. The discussions are triggered by the negotiations of a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) between the European Union and the U.S. The discussion is not limited to Germany, though. The EU Commission did react, and on March 27, 2014 started an online consultation. Verfassungsblog,  Germany’s blog “on matters constitutional”, in turn has invited some twenty legal scholars to comment, in the form of online symposium, from various legal perspectives on the document put forward by the EU Commission – profound and thought-provoking discussions guaranteed. Verfassungsblog publishes both German and English-language posts, so do check it out.

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