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Some featured events are listed below. For a full listing of CPL events in 2008 please refer to the events calendar.

Effective Judicial Review: A Cornerstone of Good Government
10-12 December 2008

This conference was convened by the School of Law of the Chinese University of Hong Kong and the Centre for Public Law in order to make a contructive and significant contribution to debate about judicial review across the world.  The central belief of the organisers is that the core values of judicial review - fidelity to the rule of law, procedural fairness and respect for fundamental rights - transcend constitutional and other differences between different legal systems.  Thus we may all learn from each other; and it is in this spirit that the conference was convened.


The Eighth Sir David Williams Lecture: 'Taking Power Seriously' Dame Sian Elias

On Friday 16th May 2008 the Centre for Public Law held the eighth in the series of lectures in honour of Sir David Williams. The lecture, entitled "Taking Power Seriously" was given by Dame Sian Elias.

A recording and the text of the lecture are available.


Clifford Chance Evening Seminar - 7th May 2008
"The Application for Judicial Review - 30 Years on"

The Centre for Public Law held an evening seminar at the offices of its Patron Clifford Chance.  The seminar, on the topic of the application for judicial review, 30 years on took place at 6.30pm on the 7th May.

The 30th anniversary of the coming into force of the RSC Order 53 and the creation of the application for judicial review provided an ideal opportunity to reflect on its development.  The seminar looked at the following themes; where we have come from - why the procedure was introduced and how its use has changed; the mechanics of judicial review - current trends in its use, such as the number of applications, the types of cases using the application and the success rate, and the role of legal aid; the application and tactics - the impact of the application on litigation tactics and the main challenges faced under the application process with particular regard to the changes made by CPR Part 54; where we are going - future developments in the application for review, such as managing the rising caseload and the role of the Administrative Court.

Speakers included: Richard Clayton QC (39 Essex Street), The Hon Mr Justice Collins (Royal Courts of Justice), Richard Gordon QC (Brick Court Chambers) and Professor Maurice Sunkin (University of Essex) and The Rt. Hon Lady Justice Arden DBE (Royal Courts of Justice) as Chair.


The Common Law, the Royal Prerogative and Executive Legislation

The Centre for Public Law held a small one day colloquium entitled "The Common Law, the Royal Prerogative and Executive Legislation".  The colloquium (generously supported by Clifford Chance) took place at the Faculty of Law on Saturday 19th January 2008. 

It considered the broader public law issues arising from the Divisional and Court of Appeal decisions concerning the legality of the Chagos Islanders' exile from the Chagos Archipelago.

A programme and related papers can be found below:

Royal Prerogative Programme & Related Papers 


Public Law Discussion Group Meetings

(For Faculty Members and Research Students)

Professor Conor Gearty (LSE) gave a talk entitled "The Basis of Legal Sovereignty Revisited: What would Professor Wade have made of Jackson v. The Attorney-General?" on Wednesday 6th February at 6 pm in the Moot Court Room.

Dr Konrad Lachmayer (University of Vienna) gave a lunchtime talk entitled "The Crisis of Austrian Constitutional Law" on Thursday 21st February at 1pm in G11.

Professor Frederick Schauer (Harvard), gave a lunchtime talk entitled "Incentives to Constitutional Compliance" on Friday 25th April at 1pm in G11. 

Professor Daphne Barak-Erez (University of Tel Aviv), gave a lunchtime talk entitled "Symbolic Constitutionalism: On Sacred Cows and Abominable Pigs" on Monday 5th May at 1pm in G11.

Dr Joo-Cheong Tham (University of Melbourne) and Professor Keith Ewing (KCL), gave a lunchtime talk entitled "Control Orders, Suspected Terrorists and Human Rights" on Monday 26th May at 1pm in G26. 

Dr Amanda Perreau-Saussine and Dr Mark Elliott gave a lunchtime talk on the House of Lords' decision in Bancoult.  The talk took place on Tuesday 18th November at 1pm in B16.

Maleiha Malik (Reader in Law, King's College, London) gave an evening talk on conflicts in anti-discrimination law: "From Conflict to Cohesion: Competing Interests in Equality Law and Policy".  The talk took place on Thursday 4th December at 6pm in G24 .


Graduate Workshops

(For Faculty Members and Research Students only)


Will Adam (University of Cardiff/Visiting Scholar to the Cambridge Law Faculty) gave a talk entitled "The Constitutional Position of Anglican Bishops: the Prayer Book Crisis 1927-9", on Thursday 8th May in G26.

Brian Sloan (Gonville & Caius College, Cambridge) gave a talk entitled "A Tale of Two Sisters: Tax, Gay Rights and the Margin of Appreciation", on Thursday 15th May in G26.

Paul Daly (Queens' College, Cambridge) gave a talk entitled "Would it be Impolitic to Kill Off the 'Political Question' Doctrine?", on Thursday 22nd May in G28.

If you are a Cambridge graduate student interested in presenting work in progress at a future workshop series, please contact Dr Amanda Perreau-Saussine (