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The power of vision in the age of climate change

Helen Keller once said, “The only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision.” The sustainability revolution is unstoppable. Signs are everywhere; policy makers and the private sector are veering towards a decarbonized development model. The adoption of the Paris Agreement on Climate Change on December 2015 marked the political turning point.

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Ecosystem-based mitigation and adaptation

Payments for ecosystem services (PES), also known as payments for environmental services (or benefits), are incentives offered to farmers or landowners in compensation for proper land-management that provides ecological services. Among these benefits we can mention conserving animal and plant species, protecting hydric resources, conserving natural scenery, and storing carbon.

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DNA testing for immigration and family reunification?

Family reunification is one of the main forms of immigration in many countries. However, in recent times, immigration has become increasingly regulated with many countries encouraging stricter vetting measures. In this climate, countries’ laws and policies applicable to family reunification seek a balance between an individual’s right to a family life and a country’s right to control the influx of immigrants.

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Richard Susskind on the future of law

In the latest episode of the Oxford Law Vox podcast Richard Susskind talks to George Miller about the gaining momentum of technology and AI in the law profession. They discuss just how vital it is that lawyers learn to reinvent themselves and work alongside technology. He also address the importance of the opportunity young lawyers have to bring about and be a major part of social change in the legal profession.

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Why the Supreme Court should overrule Quill

In ‘Quill Corporation v. North Dakota’, the US Supreme Court held that, under the dormant Commerce Clause of the US Constitution, the states cannot require out-of-state vendors to collect sales taxes because such vendors lack physical presence in the taxing state. As internet commerce has grown, Quill’s physical presence test has severely hampered the states’ ability to enforce their sales taxes since the states cannot obligate out-of-state internet firms to collect the taxes attributable to their respective sales.

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What Norway might tell us about Venezuela’s economic crisis

It is common to blame Venezuela’s current crisis on the price of oil. Despite sitting atop the world’s largest proven oil reserves, the Venezuelan economy is in a shambles and the country is gripped by chaos. When the price of oil fell precipitously in 2014, so too did Venezuela’s access to foreign exchange. Without this money, Venezuela has been unable to buoy the country’s national oil company and the social programs and food subsidies that support the sitting government.

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Historical narratives and international tribunals

This post focuses on the role of non-criminal international tribunals in the development of collective memories: is it desirable for such tribunals to be involved in the construction of collective memories? International tribunals have not adopted a consistent approach concerning the presentation of the historical narrative in the background of the judgment.

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What Mubarak’s acquittal means for Egypt

On 13 March 2017, the legal saga of the trial of Hosni Mubarak ended. The deposed autocrat, who was convicted and sentenced to life in prison for his complicity in the killing of hundreds of demonstrators and embezzlement on a grander scale, was acquitted by Egypt’s Court of Cassation and freed from his detention. “The trial of the century”, as Egyptians have dubbed Mubarak’s prosecution.

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Brexit: what happens to international litigation?

At the present time, a large range of civil proceedings, especially in the commercial area, are governed by an EU measure, the Brussels I Regulation (Recast) of 2012. This applies whenever the defendant is domiciled in another EU country, whenever there is a choice-of-court agreement designating a court in the EU, and whenever an EU Member State has exclusive jurisdiction over a particular matter, for example title to land or registered intellectual-property rights.

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Five reasons police think you should turn on ‘Ghost mode’ in Snapchat

Snapchat, an app which allows users to share photos and videos which delete themselves after a few seconds, is used by 166 million people worldwide. The latest Snapchat release has seen police issuing hasty warnings to users of the app, with the new ‘Snap Map’ feature raising a range of questions relating to privacy. What five issues might police have with this seemingly fun app update?

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Queen’s University Belfast win the OUP and BPP National Mooting Competition 2017

Congratulations to the Queen’s University Belfast team represented by Darren Finnegan and Conor Lockhart, who were crowned champions of the OUP and BPP National Mooting Competition 2016-2017, which took place at BPP Law School, Holborn on 22 June 2017. We send our thanks to all the participants who took part this year, together with the mooting co-ordinators and academics who train and coach their students.

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Fighting cyber crime [timeline]

The Blackstone’s Police team will soon be attending the 10th International Conference on Evidence Based Policing and 2nd Cybercrime Conference in Cambridge. In advance of the event, take a look through the timeline below to learn more about some of the key events in the recent history of cyber crime. Don’t forget to come to the Oxford University Press stand and say hello if you’re attending the conference!

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Systems of law and the European project

Since the end of the Second World War, the European project has met with difficulties and even crises. Its momentum has, however, been strong enough to fend off these turbulent undercurrents, and it has developed incrementally in the decades since. Supported by its two pillars, The Council of Europe and the European Union, it is a Europe built on law, and the project is progressively taking on the contours of a new legal system.

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My advice to Mr. Bezos: pay some tax

Jeff Bezos, the billionaire founder of Amazon, has asked on Twitter for advice about the use of his fortune for philanthropy. My advice is that Mr. Bezos should pay some tax. Contemporary attention to philanthropy is largely attributable to the admirable work of Warren Buffett and Bill Gates, Jr. The Giving Pledge, Buffett and Gates have commendably encouraged rich individuals in the US and abroad to devote much of their wealth to charity.

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Landmark climate agreement holds its own

It is now beyond doubt that climate change is real. It is already happening, and human beings are largely responsible for it. The pending break of a massive iceberg from Antarctica’s Larsen C ice shelf is the latest reminder of this reality, and its potentially dire consequences. As if to drive home the urgency of the climate challenge, the cracking of Larsen C accelerated just as President Trump announced his decision to withdraw the US from the Paris Agreement.

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