German Private Law Theory Meeting in Münster

There is a great new initiative in German private law theory. On 12 and 13 February Nils Jansen (Münster University) and Michael Grünberger (Bayreuth University) organized a conference on German “Perspectives of Private Law Theory”. The format of the conference was to discuss on three recent private law theory books on the basis of four invited commentaries in each case. It is intended to repeat such book discussions on a regular annual basis.

Program Münster 2016

PLT 2015 Workshop, The Core of Property

The next PLT Workshop on property theory in Königswinter (Germany) will gather leading US and European property scholars to find out if there is something like “The Core of Property” and what it might look like. The workshop is organized by Dan Wielsch (Cologne University), Bertram Lomfeld (Free University Berlin) and Hanoch Dagan (Columbia Law School)

PLT 2015 property

Yale Private Law Theory Conference, June 2015

Inaugurating the new Yale Center for the Studies of Private Law, its founder, Daniel Markovits, convenes a conference on “Private Law and Public Order”, 05 and 06 June 2015 at Yale Law School (New Haven).

Yale Conference 2015

PLT Venice Workshop “Cultures of Contract Interpretation”, October 2014

In October 2014 there will be a new PLT Workshop on “Contract, Context, Text. Cultures of Contract Interpretation” at Venice International University in Venice, Italy organized by Bernhard Jakl (Frankfurt University) and Bertram Lomfeld (Free University Berlin).

PLT 2014 venice

PLT co-organizes “Die Fälle der Gesellschaft”-symposium, Berlin 2014

The PLT network organizes a symposium together with Free University Berlin and the support of Fritz-Thyssen-Foundation on “Die Fälle der Gesellschaft – Praxis einer soziologischen Jurisprudenz” (The Cases of Society – Practice of a Sociological Jurisprudence).

PLT 2014 Berlin

First CLE-Berlin Talk with Daniel Markovits

Bertram Lomfeld initiated at Free University Berlin in cooperation with Heike Schweitzer (Free University Berlin) and Gerhard Wagner (Humboldt University Berlin) a CRITICAL LAW & ECONOMICS LECTURE SERIES which aims to reflect law & economics scholarship within a broader social theory perspective. The first lecture will be:



26-May-2014  |  19°°  |  FU Berlin  |  Bibliothek FB Jura  |  R 203  |  Van’t-Hoff-Str. 8


Lawyers, economists, and even philosophers conventionally understand markets as technologies for distributing goods across persons in the service of efficient investment, production, and (ultimately) consumption. But markets also serve a second function, which is very different and equally substantial. Market orderings establish an important and free-standing site of social cohesion. Market solidarity — as market based social cohesion might be called — exerts a powerful centripetal force that sustains order against the centrifugal forces that constantly threaten to tear cosmopolitan societies apart. Market solidarity, moreover, is not merely second-best. Rather, commercial self-interest achieves what political virtue cannot. Market solidarity arises through two mechanisms: Price-commensuration, solves the epistemic problem associated with value difference; and contract-integration, solves the normative problem associated with the authority of the market. Markets establish shared rather than merely coordinated intentions; but the sharing stops at intentions and does not reach cooperative motives. Market solidarity, one might say, involves neither mere coordination nor full cooperation, but rather, intermediately, collaboration.

Daniel Markovits is Guido Calabresi Professor of Law at Yale Law School. After earning a B.A. in Mathematics, summa cum laude from Yale University, Markovits received a British Marshall Scholarship to study in England, where he was awarded an M.Sc. in Econometrics and Mathematical Economics from the L.S.E. and a B.Phil. and D.Phil. in Philosophy from the University of Oxford. Markovits then returned to Yale to study law and, after clerking for the Honorable Guido Calabresi, joined the faculty at Yale.

Upcoming PLT Workshop in Venice

The PLT network organizes a workshop on “Cultures of Contract Interpretation” in October 2014 at Venice International University, Italy.

PLT Vigoni-Talks published

The PLT Villa Vigoni-Talks are published as special edition of Law & Contemporary Problems (Volume 76/2) : Lomfeld/Wielsch (eds.), The Public Dimension of Contract (2013). We wish to thank all the contributors who made that outstanding publication possible.

Private Law and Economic Crisis

In November 2012 the PLT network will hold a conference on the possibilities of private law in the eye of the economic crisis at the University of Ferrara. You could find the program here.

Harvard set course for PLT

On Friday, October 21, 2011 the Harvard Law Review will hold a symposium conference at Harvard Law School in which scholars will present drafts of papers on “The New Private Law.” Other scholars will respond to and comment on the ideas of “The New Private Law” from a variety of methodological perspectives. Presenters include Henry Smith (Harvard Law School) on property law, Stephen Smith (McGill University Faculty of Law) on remedies, Shyam Balganesh (University of Pennsylvania Law School) on copyright and Benjamin Zipursky (Fordham University School of Law) on tort law. The full program is available here.

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