Whenever society is confronted with a significant detrimental event or development – a perceived increase in crime, consumer fraud, an environmetal disaster – there is a tendency to simply throw law at the problem.
Pierre Larouche is Professor of Competition Law at Tilburg University and Co-Director of the Tilburg Law and Economics Center (TILEC), as well as Professor at the College of Europe (Bruges). Before starting his academic career in 1996 at the University of Maastricht, he clerked at the Supreme Court of Canada in 1991-1992 and practised law for three years in the EU law unit of Stibbe Simont Monahan Duhot in Brussels. His teaching and research interests include competition law, telecommunications law, media law, basic community law and the common European law of torts. He received a number of research grants from Dutch and European funding organisations as well as from private sources. He has been a guest professor at McGill University (2002) and National University of Singapore (2004, 2006, 2008, 2011) and a Searle fellow at Chicago’s Northwestern University (2009-10). Professor Pierre Larouche is the author of more than fifty scientific papers published in reputable law journals.
Law, Society and Normativity
Law faces two major challenges in the coming decades. On the one hand, the legal system should not become the sole repository of normativity in our societies. Legal subjects are increasingly requesting and expecting that normative issues be solved by law, thereby relieving legal subjects from having to reflect upon the courses of action open to them. This trend towards normative outsourcing should be rolled back. On the other hand, law and legal science must understand how to make the jump from the analytical findings of social sciences to normative statements about law. They are not yet equipped to deal with the normative consequences of the findings of other social sciences. Legal science must rise to the challenge by developing a model of law that is richer than what is commonly used in other social sciences (law as rules), and upon which findings from social sciences can be grafted.