How to Vaccinate the World, Part 2

How to Vaccinate the World, Part 2

In a previous post, one of us described why we need global cooperation to achieve massively scaled up production of COVID vaccines. The United States must play a key role in this process, because it has the ability to mobilize resources, and powerful leverage over companies that have so far resisted serious participation in global efforts – especially Moderna, Pfizer, and J&J. Some commentators question whether the US has the power to compel this cooperation. Others have doubted the relevance of the demand coming from developing countries to temporarily waive the requirements of the World Trade Organization’s TRIPS Agreement to facilitate more manufacturing. In this post, we explain why existing US law gives the Biden Administration the power to mandate sharing and overcome IP barriers, and how the TRIPS waiver can contribute importantly to efforts to scale up production at a global scale.

How to Vaccinate the World, Part 1

How to Vaccinate the World, Part 1

The shortage of vaccines is a manmade problem, brought on by the false promise of innovation-by-monopoly and by reproduction of colonial dynamics. Our global R&D system layers privatized control and profits for huge firms based in rich countries atop a vast regime of open science and public subsidy. We can scale up production if we force pharma to share.

LPE in Europe as Critique of Ordoliberalism

LPE in Europe as Critique of Ordoliberalism

The relevance of LPE for Europe might not be instantly obvious. LPE in the U.S. gets part of its conceptual thrust from its opposition to the dominance of Law and Economics, a framework that never achieved the same kind of intellectual hegemony in Europe. But there is a European parallel that could ground critique: the guiding role that ordoliberalism has played in the structuring of the supranational economy. But to get a grip on what LPE has to offer in a critique of ordoliberalism, we must first explore how left legal thought in Europe has engaged with ordoliberalism so far.

The Regulatory Roots of Inequality in the U.S.

The Regulatory Roots of Inequality in the U.S.

The surge in US economic inequality since the 1970s was powerfully driven by politics and policy. Firms and individuals actively shaped market governance – from corporate governance to labor regulation – in their own favor and then took advantage of that favorable governance in the marketplace. This “inequality snowball” was particularly pronounced in the United States because firms were more aggressive in their business and political strategies and because the political system delivered more winner-take-all policy outcomes than the more consensual political systems of continental Europe and Japan.

UBI and Immigrants: Lessons from the Pandemic

UBI and Immigrants: Lessons from the Pandemic

Surely advocates of such programs do not envision Qatar as their model society. And yet it is too easy to imagine a version of a Gulf state arising from a basic income initiative that provides cash support to citizens, who no longer need to take work that is unsatisfying, while denying it to noncitizens, who are brought in do the difficult and dangerous jobs that remain.

What the UK Student Rent Strikes Reveal about Financialization

What the UK Student Rent Strikes Reveal about Financialization

The Bristol Rent Strike, which now has over 1900 students pledging to withhold rent, is one of the many ongoing student strikes across the UK. Over the past few months, students at roughly 20 universities including Manchester, Oxford, and Cambridge have organized mass rent strikes, demanding overall reductions in rent, no-penalty contract releases, and better accommodation conditions. But one significant obstacle stands in their way: Many of these students live in financialized student housing—in buildings owned not by universities but by multi-million-dollar corporations. The financialization of student housing has fundamentally altered the relationship between universities and students and, in so doing, has complicated student resistance against housing injustice.

Tax Havens: Legal Recoding of Colonial Plunder

Tax Havens: Legal Recoding of Colonial Plunder

The end of European empires during the mid-twentieth century and the independence of former colonies was many things: an oft-violent conflict between unequal opponents, a clash of ideas and ideologies, a struggle over rights and self-determination. Less frequently considered is that decolonization involved a dramatic movement of money and a legal reorganization of access to assets and investments. Having tracked these movements, I have found a surprising connection between decolonization and the expansion of tax havens and tax haven business during the 1950s and 1960s.

LPE Approaches to Migration and the Labor Market

LPE Approaches to Migration and the Labor Market

This post comes out of the early career workshop ‘Law and Political Economy in Europe’, which took place at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, at the University of Oxford, on the 7th of October 2019. For all the posts this series, click here. Plenty of leftists continue to make the case for limiting migration and enforcing border restrictions.…

Labor Law and Economic Governance in the EU

Labor Law and Economic Governance in the EU

This post comes out of the early career workshop ‘Law and Political Economy in Europe’, which took place at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, at the University of Oxford, on the 7th of October 2019. For all the posts this series, click here. At the Oxford Workshop, I explored the relationship between the EU economic governance and labor…

The Borders of Empire

The Borders of Empire

The designations “illegal” or “economic” immigrant swiftly mark those to whom they are applied as legitimate targets of national exclusion. Public and academic discourse often treats such immigrants as the consummate political strangers, standing outside the political borders of “we the people” or “we the citizens,” whose status as citizens confers a collectively-held, unilateral right…

Measuring the Sustainable Corporation

Measuring the Sustainable Corporation

This post comes out of the early career workshop ‘Law and Political Economy in Europe’, which took place at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, at the University of Oxford, on the 7th of October 2019. For all the posts this series, click here. The impending climate crisis, the widespread social tensions and the burgeoning level of wealth and…