Workshop with Prof. Ugo Mattei (University of California, Hastings College of the Law)
The workshop “The Law of the Commons” will focus on the complex relationship between commons, law and democracy. During the last decade, the concept of commons governance has become somewhat popular as a possible answer to the supposedly interrelated ecological, economic and political crises: global warming and the degradation of the environment; the instability of markets and the rise in economic inequalities; and finally what some political scientists have coined “post-democracy”. This general interest in commons was strongly enhanced when Elinor Ostrom won the Nobel Prize in Economics in 2009 for her life long work on the sustainable self-governance of common pool resources. The commons is an interesting concept for political and legal philosophy, because it forces one to rethink conventional and fundamental epistemological and ontological categories concerning our relation to nature and our understanding of human rights, property rights and democracy.