Foreign & International Law

Global law resources at D’Angelo Law Library

The Law School’s Global Chicago Law Wine Mess is a good time to explore the diverse foreign, comparative, and international law (FCIL) resources we have at the University. Here is Lyonette “Lyo” Louis-Jacques (’86), Foreign and International Law Librarian, on FCIL databases and websites that you can access via the D’Angelo Law Library.

To start your FCIL research, consult “people” and print resources, but also check out the “Foreign and International Law” section of the D’Angelo Law Library Law Databases page.

Are you looking for non-U.S. constitutions? We have Constitute, Constitutions of the Countries of the World, and World Constitutions Illustrated.

Don’t know where to begin to look for sources on the law of a particular foreign jurisdiction? You can use tools such as the Foreign Law Guide, GlobaLex, and Guide to Law Online.

Want to locate statutes, codes, cases, and other primary law of foreign jurisdictions? We have ChinaLawInfo (aka LawInfoChina aka PKULaw), Manupatra and SCC Online (India), Israel Law Reports and Nevo, vLex (over 130 countries – strong for Spain and Latin American jurisdictions), WorldLII (multiple countries), and many other foreign law research tools.

Looking for treaties and other international agreements? Check out HeinOnline.

Maybe someone has written about the comparative law topic you’re researching? You can look for commentary in secondary sources such as encyclopedias, handbooks, books, journals articles, and news stories. Favorite databases for foreign corporate law research are Practical Law (global guides and cross-border resources), Getting the Deal Through (GTDT via Bloomberg Law), International Comparative Legal Guides (ICLG), and the International Encyclopaedia of Laws (IEL).

Don’t find what you’re looking for? Or have follow-up questions? Or want to arrange a library research consultation? Ask a Law Librarian!

New database trials: Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) Daily Reports and 20th Century Global Perspectives collections

This University of Chicago Library trial is available from November 21, 2018January 12, 2019. It consists of ten different databases:

Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) Daily Reports

The FBIS Daily Reports are U.S. government publications that include translations of news from around the world (Africa, Asia, Australia/Oceania, Caribbean, Europe, Middle East/Near East, North America, South America). The FBIS Daily Reports also include translations of foreign law in English translation if included in the news sources covered.

The Readex FBIS database covers 1941-1996.

From the Readex description of the database:

“As the United States’ principal historical record of political open source intelligence for more than half a century, the Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) Daily Report is an indispensable source for insights into decades of turbulent world history. The original mission of the FBIS was to monitor, record, transcribe and translate intercepted radio broadcasts from foreign governments, official news services, and clandestine broadcasts from occupied territories. Accordingly, it provides a wealth of information from all countries outside of the U.S.—from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe….

…FBIS Daily Reports, 1941-1996 constitutes a one-of-a-kind archive of transcripts of foreign broadcasts and news that provides fascinating insight into the second half of the 20th century. Many of these materials are firsthand reports of events as they occurred. Digitized from original paper copy and high-quality microfilm, this definitive online collection features full-text transcripts from Africa, Asia and the Pacific, China, Eastern and Western Europe, Latin America, the Middle East and the Soviet Union. Fully searchable for the first time, this unique digital collection features individual bibliographic records for each report and highlighted events to assist researchers.

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New Elgar online law databases

Cover of Elgar Encyclopedia of Law and Economics bookUniversity researchers now have access to the following new Elgar online resources via the D’Angelo Law Library’s subscription:


Campus users can also search full texts of recent handbooks, monographs, commentaries, and research reviews via the Elgaronline Law-Academic platform. Individual books can also be located via the library catalog. Great ways to find ebooks on all types of topics, including foreign, comparative, and international law.

Elgaronline complements our other law ebook collections: Oxford Scholarship Online: Law, Oxford Handbooks Online in Law, Oxford Scholarly Authorities in International Law (OSAIL), PLI Plus, SpringerLink, Recueil des cours = Collected Courses (Hague Academy of International Law), and various The Making of Modern Law and HeinOnline modules.

 

New Indian Database: SCC Online

The D’Angelo Law Library has subscribed to SCC Online. SCC Online has Indian Supreme Court and state High Court case law, pre-independence case law, central and state statutes, bills in Parliament, government policy documents, and reports of committees and commissions.

SCC Online is available to the entire University of Chicago community. Access is by IP address, but not anonymous–you must register and sign in with your uchicago email address, in the blank below the IP Access tab.

We welcome comments on SCC Online, how useful and user friendly you find it, and how it compares with our other Indian law database, Manupatra.

New database trial: Archives Unbound: Holocaust Studies

The Library has received trial access to the following database:

Archives Unbound: Holocaust Studies

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This trial consists of access to the following collections:

  • The Jewish Question: Records from the Berlin Document Center
  • Nuremburg Laws and Nazi Annulment of Jewish German Nationality
  • German Anti-Semitic Propaganda
  • Nazism in Poland: The Diary of Governor-General Hans Frank
  • Testaments to the Holocaust Digital Archive
  • U.S. Relations with the Vatican and the Holocaust, 1940-1950
  • Correspondence from German Concentration Camps and Prisons

Access this resource via the Database Trials page.

This trial is available from February 20, 2018 – March 11, 2018.

Please try it out and let us know what you think.

vLex for Global Legal Research

Re-discover vLex Global this year! The Library subscribes to this major platform for researching the laws of 134 jurisdictions in 13 languages.  The publisher describes its coverage as follows:

Comprehensive case law & legislation for the United States, Canada, Spain, Mexico, Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Colombia, Peru, Panama, Ecuador, Uruguay, Puerto Rico and India. Extensive collections of primary materials for the European Union and other jurisdictions.  Extensive secondary materials for up to 100 countries including Federal Register, official gazettes, peer-reviewed law journals, doctrine, magazines and books. All available in up to 13 languages with automatic parallel translation! Create your personal account to customize your settings, set up alerts, follow documents, highlight, take notes, download and save documents.

You can use vLex to locate the texts of foreign constitutions, codes, statutes, regulations, court cases, and administrative decisions, as well as documents of regional organizations such as the EU, Mercosur, and the Andean Community. Besides the countries listed above, vLex is also strong for Venezuela, Portugal, Italy, the UK, Belgium, and France. vLex Global is great for human rights, immigration law, and comparative legal research generally.

 

New database trial: Oxford International Organizations (OXIO)

We have received trial access to the following database:

Oxford International Organizations (OXIO)

This resource has been created with “the aim of providing practitioners, scholars, legal advisers, policy-makers, and observers of international relations with the most precise, holistic and up-to-date picture of the acts of international organizations possible, and with an increased understanding of the contribution of these organizations.” OXIO is available via the Oxford Public International Law platform.

Access this resource via the Database Trials page.

This trial is available through July 31, 2018.

Please direct your feedback to Lyonette Louis-Jacques.

New features for Constitute, the free online resource for comparing constitutions, now LIVE

Constitute 4.0 is here! New features added to Constitute of particular interest are draft and historical constitutions. Constitute has draft texts for Iceland (2011), Lybia (2016), the Syrian Arab Republic (2017), and Yemen (2015). The collection of historical constitutions, while small presently (there are 10 historical texts), will surely grow as old constitutions are superseded by new ones. Learn more about the changes on Constitute’s What’s New page and in Zachary Elkins’ Medium post, “Introducing Constitute 4.0: Democratic Deepening” (Nov. 28, 2017).

Snippet of Arabic Constitute

Constitute’s tagline is “The World’s Constitutions to Read, Search, and Compare”. It has English and Arabic versions, and a Spanish Constitute is coming soon. As of today, English Constitute has the texts of 192 constitutions in force in English and English translation. Arabic Constitute has 54 constitutions. Constitute was developed by the Comparative Constitutions Project (“Informing Constitutional Design”). Law School Professor Tom Ginsburg is one of the directors of the CCP along with Zachary Elkins and James Melton.

Constitute is great for comparative constitutional law research. Check it out!

New online resource: The Max Planck Encyclopedia of Comparative Constitutional Law

Max Planck Encyclopedia logoUniversity of Chicago researchers now have access to a new global research tool licensed by the Library – the Max Planck Encyclopedia of Comparative Constitutional Law. Oxford University Press launched the Encyclopedia on April 27, 2017 with 70 articles, and will have over 570 articles when completed. The Encyclopedia includes articles on children’s rights, the right to education, the right to privacy, supreme/constitutional courts of Argentina, Colombia, France, Israel, Japan, and Mexico, and much, much more. It complements the primary constitutional texts, source materials, and expert commentary in the Oxford Constitutions of the World and Oxford U.S. Constitutional Law databases – also available on the Oxford Constitutional Law platform.

Here is an excerpt from the OUP launch announcement:

“Overseen by the editors at the Max Planck Foundation for International Peace and the Rule of Law, the Max Planck Encyclopedia of Comparative Constitutional Law will provide a high level of analytic coverage of constitutional law topics in a comparative context. The encyclopedia articles—modeled on those in the Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law—address a focused range of topics that seek to provide the best coverage of the essence, character, development, and history of constitutional law from a global perspective. The articles will define and cover the basis and foundations of state formation and constitutional law, as well as analyzing and explaining underlying legal concepts such as:

  • human rights;
  • constitutional formation;
  • scope of state protections;
  • the defining structures of governmental makeup;
  • types of legal structures and interactions within a constitutional law system; and
  • legal constitutional concepts that make up constitutional law.

In addition, articles provide insight and detail into key cases that have contributed to or defined constitutional law concepts on a global scale such as Brown v Board of Education (United States), the Mizrahi Bank Case (Israel), the Minerva Mills Case (India), and Marbury v Madison (United States), and discuss key instruments in constitutional law history such as the Magna Carta and the Charter of Medina, among others. The service provides browsing and searching of all of the material within the resource based on keywords and subjects….”

Check it out!

New online resource: Nevo

The Library recently subscribed to Nevo, a database of Israeli law. It includes primary law (legislation, bills, regulations, case-law) and secondary law sources (articles, books). Access is campuswide. Searching is in Hebrew, but users can use their favorite translation tool (for example, Google Chrome or Google Translate) to navigate the database if needed. Try it out, and let us know what you think!