In this post, my colleague Natalia Spyridaki at the British Institute of International and Comparative Law (BIICL), looks forward to 2014’s ICLQ lecture.

What are the consequences of borrowing legal doctrines from other legal regimes? This concept of legal transplant triggers interesting questions in comparative law, which will be the focus of the Fourth Annual International & Comparative Law Quarterly Lecture on 20th May. Professor Mindy Chen-Wishart of Merton College at the University of Oxford will deliver her paper titled “Legal Transplant and Undue Influence: Lost in Translation or a Working Misunderstanding?” which was published in the International and Comparative Law Quarterly in 2013. The lecture will discuss an increasing awareness of the unquestioned assumptions of one’s own legal system as a means of understanding how a transplanted doctrine has been applied in a particular context, with a focus on Singaporean courts ‘borrowing’ undue influence in family guarantee cases from the English legal system.

This event will offer an excellent insight of the concept of undue influence in the ethical culture of Confucianism. Through exploring hierarch versus equality, the positional versus the personal, and collectivism versus individualism, it will conclude on whether a ‘Western’ legal transplant can be successful in a very different Singaporean cultural context.

The welcome address for the event, which will take place at the British Institute of International and Comparative Law in London from 5.30pm, will be given by the General Editor of the International and Comparative Law Quarterly (ICLQ), Professor Malcolm Evans OBE, Professor of International Law at Bristol University. It will be followed by a drinks reception, generously sponsored by Cambridge University Press who publish and distribute the ICLQ.

The Annual Lecture series was introduced in 2011 to mark the 60th anniversary of the International and Comparative Law Quarterly, and to showcase it as the flagship publication of the British Institute of International and Comparative Law, and continues to attract a wide audience of scholars, practitioners and students each year.

The Young Scholar Prize 2013 will also be awarded at the event, to Bharat Malkani, University of Birmingham, for his paper: ‘The Obligation to Refrain from Assisting the Use of the Death Penalty’. This Prize is given by Cambridge University Press annually for the best contribution authored by a scholar aged 35 or under at the time of publication, in keeping with the mission of the journal to recognise and encourage exceptional scholarship and talent in the understanding of international and comparative law.

For more information on the Annual Lecture and to book for the event, please visit the events page of the British Institute of International & Comparative Law.

– Natalia Spyridaki, British Institute of International and Comparative Law

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