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Constitution of the Commission on Legal Pluralism

  1. Name and Affiliation with IUAES The Commission on Legal Pluralism (formerly known as the Commisson on Legal Pluralism and Folk Law) was founded in December 1978. It is affiliated with the IUAES as a commission thereof.
  2. Purposes The primary purpose of the Commission is to further knowledge and understanding of legal pluralism, with a focus upon theoretical and practical problems resulting from the interaction of different legal orders. The Commission aims to promote interregional and interdisciplinary communication and to stimulate a dialogue between scholars and those engaged in practice of various sorts.
  3. Membership, Contributions Associate Members Membership is oapen to anyone with a serious and substantial scholarly or practical commitment to or involvement in the field of legal pluralism. Membership can be terminated by resignation or by expulsion for good cause. Admission to and expulsion of members is the responsibility of the Executive Body of the Board. An adverse decision can be appealed to the Board. The membership fee shall be fixed by the Board. Account will be taken of the difficult financial position of persons in developing countries. Members who have not paid thier dues are not in good standing and have neither the right to vote nor the right to receive mailings of Commission materials. Persons interested in the Commission's work who do not qualify for membership (e.g. students), can be admitted to Associate Membership by the Executive Body. The terms and conditions of such membership shall be set by the Board.
  4. Election of the Board and President The President and members of the Board of the Commission shall be elected every three years (as far as possible in conjunction with meetings of the membership) from among the members of the Commission. Except as herein provided, the procedure for election shall be fixed by the Board. Election shall be by written, mail or email ballot. The Board shall circulate a list of nominees a reasonable time prior to an election. Persons nominated by 5 or more members shall be added to this list if they consent on being nominated. In making its nominations, the Board shall strive for the best feasible realization of the principle that the membership of the Board should be well distributed over the disciplines and geographic areas represented in the Commission.
  5. The Board All powers of the Commission are vested in the Board (the Board constitutes the "commission" in the sense of the rules of the IUAES). The Board consists of the President, other elected members, and the chairpersons of any Standing Committees and recognized Regional Working Groups (ex officio). It shall have a maximum of 30 members. Meetings of the Board shall be called by the President in consultation with the Executive Body. There shall be at least one meeting every two years, preferably in conjunction with a scientific activity of the Commission. A meeting shall also be called upon the written request of at least 5 members. The Board shall report to the membership at least once every year concerning the activities and financial and other affairs of the Commission. The minutes of the Board, the Executive Body and of all committees shall be made available to the members of the Commission.
  6. The Executive Body The Executive Body consists of the President and a minimum of four Board members, appointed by the Board, of whom one shall be appointed secretary-treasurer with daily responsibility for the secretariat. The Executive Body acts on behalf of the Board. Any act of the Executive Body can be reviewed by the Board at any time. The Executive Body shall keep the Board regularly informed of its activities on behalf of the Board. The Executive Body is responsible for the secretariat of the Commission, including the maintenance of its membership and mailing list, archives, financial records and bank accounts, etc. The mailing list of the Commission will be made available to any member wishing to communicate with the membership on matters of concern to the Commission. The Executive Body can also make it available for other appropriate activities which serve to further the Commission's purposes.
  7. Committees and Regional Working Groups The Commission may establish Standing Committees whose members shall be appointed by the President in consultation with the Executive Body. Replacement due to inactivity shall be done by the President in consultation with the Executive Body; other removals (other than by resignation) shall be effected by the Board. Membership Committee: charged with the recruitment of new members to be proposed to the Executive Body for admission, with special attention to recruitment from underrepresented areas, groups, etc. The Commission has such Regional Working Groups as the Board recognizes. The Board can create other ad hoc committees for particular purposes.
  8. Affiliations The Board is empowered to enter into cooperative and associative arrangements with other organisations with a view to furthering the purposes of the Commission.
  9. Publications The Commission uses the website and other electronic means as an internal medium of communication among its members and associate members. The Board is authorized to negotiate a relationship with one or more appropriate scholarly journal(s), with a view to having access to a regular organ for disseminating information concerning its activities and for publishing the result of research and writing carried out under its auspices, and with a view to communicating to the Commission's members the fruits of relevant scholarship and other information relevant to the Commission's purposes.
  10. Amendment The provisions of this Constitution can be amended by the Board, after due notice to the members. Fundamental changes, including disbanding the Commission or merging it with another organisation, may only be taken after appropriate consultation with the members.
  11. Adoption of this Constitution The Constitution was adopted by the Board at its Vancouver meeting, in August 1983. It was amended by the Executive Body at its Halle meeting, in November 2010, and approved by the Board in March 2011.


18th IUAES World Congres, July 16-20, 2018

The 18th World Congress of the International Union of Anthropological and Ethnological Sciences (IUAES) has the following general subject: The past, present and future of anthropological knowledge. It will be hosted by the Federal University of Santa Catarina, in Florianópolis, the capital city of the Brazilian southern state of Santa Catarina, with the support of the Brazilian Association of Anthropology (ABA). This will be the first world congress of anthropology to be held in South America since a first meeting in London in 1934.

Panel proposals can be submitted until 30 October 2017. A call for papers to be included in accepted panels will be open from 1 December 2017.

For more information, check: http://www.iuaes2018.org/site/capa

LSA Annual Meeting 2018, June 7-10, 2018

The Law and Society Association (LSA) and the Canadian Law and Society Association jointly organize a meeting in Toronto: “Law at the crossroads: le droit a la croisée des chemins”. Date: June 7-10, 2018. Venue: Sheraton Centre, Toronto, Canada.

For paper and session proposals, see: http://www.lawandsociety.org/Toronto2018/toronto2018.html

In Memoriam John Griffiths (1940-2017)

It is with great sadness that we note the passing of John Griffiths. John developed his interest in sociology of law in the early 1970s and he started teaching this subject in 1973 at New York University. He moved to the University of Groningen in 1976, were he was appointed Professor in 1977. Until his retirement in 2015 he lived and worked in Groningen. He was one of the founding fathers of the Journal of Legal Pluralism and Unofficial Law and will be remembered for his contribution in early debates about the content and scope of the concept of legal pluralism. John will be missed by his many former-colleagues, graduate students and friends.

Conference: 'Anticipating Law: The prognostics of fear and hope', 19-21 September 2017

Professor Julia Eckert, Miia Halme-Tuomisaari, David Loher and Tobias Eule are organising a conference on “Anticipating Law: The Prognostics of Fear and Hope”, 19-21 September 2017, in Bern, Switzerland. Here is the Call for Papers: 

With calling for papers that engage with the theme of “Anticipating law” we mean to call into view both anticipations of law, that is the hopes and fears people put into law, and anticipatory laws, that is the attempt to legally regulate the future. Both anticipations of law and anticipatory laws, we hold, are shaped by fear and hope as different forms of anticipation.

The call for papers is open. Abstracts should be submitted by 1 March 2017 and full papers are expected by 1 September 2017. For submission of abstracts and queries contact Julia Eckert, julia.eckert@anthro.unibe.ch David Loher david.loher@anthro.unibe.ch.

For more information, see attachment.

MARE People & the Sea Conference, 5-7 July 2017

On 5-7th of July 2017 the 9th MARE People & the Sea Conference will take place in Amsterdam. This year’s theme is Dealing with Maritime Mobilities. The conference will explore the nature of maritime mobilities and the ways climate and environmental change, economic development and maritime activities are affecting their direction and volume.

Deadline for panel, paper proposals and other conference formats: January 31st, 2017 (GMT). For detailed information about the programme and the different themes see the call for papers

International Meeting on Law and Society, Mexico City, 20-23 June 2017

The Law and Society Association and the Research Committee on the Sociology of Law are together organising an international meeting on law and society in Mexico City, June 20-23, 2017. The theme of the meeting is 'Walls, Borders, and Bridges: Law and Society in an Inter-Connected World'. 

Walls and bridges:  exclusion and inclusion.  Everybody recognizes these two contradictory themes; they have a big role today in national politics, and national law; in international politics, and international law.  A famous old statement had it that all politics is local; but today, all politics is, in some sense, global.  If country A wants to close its borders, and close back in on itself, it is because it is reacting to turmoil outside its boundaries.  Today, no wall can ever be high enough to shut out the forces that are shaping life in the 21st century, for better or for worse. 

We think our field can help us understand that world, what makes it tick, where it has been, and where it is going.  Our theme focuses on walls, borders, and bridges.  But of course, we welcome all studies of law and society; empirical studies, no matter how small, no matter how local, can be tiles that fit into a larger mosaic; and many of these studies will be relevant to our theme, even when this relevance is a bit hard to see.

Deadline for submission is October 18, 2016. For more information, visit the LSA webpage