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Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Cambridge Faculty of Law Legal Studies Research Paper SeriesThe Faculty has published Volume 4 Number 9 of the University of Cambridge Faculty of Law Legal Studies Research Paper Series on SSRN.

This issue includes the following articles:

Guglielmo Verdirame & Jason Pobjoy: The End of Refugee Camps? (29/2013)

Encampment is one of the main challenges to the protection of the human rights of refugees. In most of Africa and in many parts of Asia it is the standard way of hosting and assisting refugees, and often the only one employed by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (‘UNHCR’), humanitarian organizations, and many host states. Until recently there had been little critical engagement with the question of refugee camps within policy circles. Something began to change when a group of human rights and humanitarian organizations, led by the US Committee for Refugees and Migrants ('USCRI'), organized a worldwide worldwide campaign against what was labeled ‘the warehousing of refugees’ and adopted the Statement Calling for Solutions to End the Warehousing of Refugees in September 2009. In their own words, refugees are warehoused when they: 'are confined to camps and segregated settlements or otherwise deprived of their basic rights, in situations lasting 10 years or more. Warehousing refugees not only violates their rights but also often reduces refugees to enforced idleness, dependency, and despair.'

Although the UNHCR has not joined the USCRI campaign, it has recently embarked on its own internal process of policy review that indicates a willingness to reassess the organization's current approach to the protection of refugees in the political South. This review process culminated in 2009 with the adoption of the Policy on Refugee Protection and Solutions in Urban Areas (‘2009 Urban Policy’). This new policy – strongly supported by the High Commissioner Mr Antonio Guterres, purports to respond to the reality that more than half of the world’s refugges lives in urban environments. Lauded as ‘the beginning of a new approach’, the 2009 Urban Policy is the centrepiece of the UNHCR’s ‘recalibrated’ approach to urban-based refugees, marking a generally welcome shift away from the organization's far more restrictive policy published in 1997.

Peter Turner: Prescription By and Against Lessees (34/2013)

It is generally thought that special rules bar prescription either by or against a lessee in English law. These rules have often been criticised as irrational, and identified as a proper subject for law reform. In fact there are no such rules, as this article shows.

Neil Andrews: Interpretation of Written Contracts in England (36/2013)

This article examines the leading principles governing interpretation of written contracts under English law. This is a comprehensive and incisive analysis of the current law and of the relevant doctrines, including the equitable principles of rectification, as well as the powers of appeal courts or of the High Court when hearing an appeal from an arbitral award. The topic of interpretation of written contracts is fast-moving. It is of fundamental importance because this is the most significant commercial focus for dispute and because of the number of cross-border transactions to which English law is expressly applied by businesses.

Brian Sloan: Post-Adoption Contact Reform: Compounding the State-Ordered Termination of Parenthood? (42/2013)

The Children and Families Bill 2013-14 pursues the twin policies of increasing the number of children adopted out of compulsory state care and reducing the scope for court-ordered contact between such children and their birth families. Building upon previous work by Dr. Kirsty Hughes and myself, this paper critically evaluates the proposed reforms to post-adoption contact in view of the fact that adoption terminates the legal relationship of parent and child. Aspects of the analysis include the impact of the proposals on "open adoption" and child welfare in the light of the available empirical evidence, and their compatibility with both the European Convention on Human Rights and the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.


Interested readers can browse the Working Paper Series at SSRN, or sign up to subscribe to distributions of the the e-journal.