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Legislation Drafting Resources  

This guide was prepared to support the research effort of students in the USD Law Legislation Course.
Last Updated: Aug 23, 2017 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

Foreign and International Comparative Resources Print Page

Legal Transplants - Alan Watson

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Legal Transplants: An Approach to Comparative Law - Alan Watson
ISBN: 082031532X
Publication Date: 1993-07-01
Preview also available in Google Books

From the publisher: In Legal Transplants, one of the world's foremost authorities on legal history and comparative law puts forth a clear and concise statement of his controversial thesis on the way that law has developed throughout history.

When it was first published in 1974, Legal Transplants sparked both praise and outrage. Alan Watson's argument challenges the long-prevailing notion that a close connection exists between the law and the society in which it operates. His main thesis is that a society's laws do not usually develop as a logical outgrowth of its own experience. Instead, he contends, the laws of one society are primarily borrowed from other societies; therefore, most law operates in a society very different from the one for which it was originally created. Utilizing a wealth of primary sources, Watson illustrates his argument with examples ranging from the ancient Near East, ancient Rome, early modern Europe, Puritan New England, and modern New Zealand. The resulting picture of the law's surprising longevity and acceptance in foreign conditions carries important implications for legal historians and sociologists. The law cannot be used as a tool to understand society, Watson believes, without a careful consideration of legal transplants.

For this edition, Watson has written a new afterword in which he places his original study in the context of more recent scholarship and offers some new reflections on legal borrowings, law, and society.


International Legislative Drafting Institute

The Public Law Center (TPLC) launched the International Legislative Drafting Institute in 1995 in response to increasing global demand for training of legislative drafters.  The Institute is a two-week summer program that responds to the worldwide demand on legislative drafters for new laws to support the emergence of free market economies and democratic forms of government. The Institute draws together diverse domestic and international faculty members experienced in the legislative process.


Reynolds & Flores - Foreign Law: Current Sources of Codes and Legislation in Jurisdictions of the World

Foreign Law: Current Sources of Codes and Legislation in Jurisdictions of the World, available electronically at some law libraries as the Foreign Law Guide, provides references to foreign laws on specific topics.


Federal Bar Association - International Journal of Legislative Drafting and Law Reform

The Federal Bar Association publishes the International Journal of Legislative Drafting and Law Reform

"International Journal of Legislative Drafting and Law Reform is a peer reviewed journal. It is a forum for innovative and original articles on the theories, principles, methods, techniques, style and best practices applied in legislative drafting and law reform practice from international and comparative law perspectives. The journal aims to identify the commonalities and general principles of legislative drafting and law reform that are common to the dominant traditions of civil law, common law, European Union, Islamic law jurisdictions. The purpose of comparing legislative drafting and law reform systems is not to prove that one legal system is superior to another but to demonstrate the capacity to learn and benefit from one another. Overall, the aim of the Journal is to promote inter-jurisdictional dialogue thereby building bridges across the divide in terms of legislative drafting and law reform amongst these different jurisdictions."

Although the Journal is not indexed in the Current Law Index or the Index to Legal Periodicals, it has recently been added to HeinOnline and can be searched using that tool.



Drafting Legislation: A Modern Approach (Comparative)

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Drafting Legislation - Helen Xanthaki; Constantin Stefanou
ISBN: 0754649032
Publication Date: 2008-11-01
"The aim of this book is to prove Sir William Dale's doctrine that the rules for drafting good quality legislation are the same in common and civil systems of law. Legislative solutions can therefore serve the drafter, the judge and the practitioner of any jurisdiction. The book discusses the general issue of quality in legislation from the legislative process to the actual drafting interpretation and enforcement. It also analyses topics related to quality in legislation such as clarity, precision and unambiguity, plain language and gender-neutral language and assesses whether Sir William's view of universality in the definition and elements of quality in legislation is right or not."


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