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Agricultural Soil and Agricultural Land – Problems and Challenges from the View of Legal Regulation

Abstract

At present, the issue of agricultural land protection resonates in a wide range of scientific disciplines. Individual approaches to the subject are in line with the relevant field, but the basis should always be grounded in the current legislation. The paper is a technical description focused on identification of the basic terms, relations, problems, goals and challenges and possible legal or legislative solutions of the physical protection of the agricultural soil and the legal protection of the agricultural land as an object of legal relations in the Slovak Republic. Achievement the goals and their legal realisation is possible only if certain legal obstacles are resolved on the national level and level of European Union. This paper represents a basic analysis, which can possibly serve as a support for an attempt to resolve the defined problems by the legislative means.

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Farmland as a “Common”? Two Case Studies Regarding Sustainable Farming in Northern Italy

Abstract

Eco-sustainable and ethical farming initiatives arising from civil society have had an increasing popularity all over the world in recent decades, and Italy is no exception to this trend. This contribution is aimed at presenting two significant case studies from this country concerning sustainable and ethical farming, one of which is a uniquely Italian experience. What I argue is that it is possible to see the main features of the theory of the so-called “environmental commons” as the ethical-legal basis in the background of these initiatives. Through a sort of inductive approach of research, the examination of the two case studies offers the possibility to propose a more general inquiry, i.e. to question whether and how these experiences can be expressive of a new conception of farmland, which can be labeled as “farmland as a common”.

Open access
The Notion of the European Union Trademark

Abstract

The EU trademark law has recorded the important changes in the last years. The Community trademark in the past and the EU trademark at the present have become very popular legal measures not only in the EU Member States but also in the third countries. Its preferences are increasing year to year. The EU trademark may consist of a sign that fulfils two main attributes. Firstly, there is a distinctive character. Secondly, there is a capability of being represented on the Register of the EU trademarks. The second attribute is new and replaced the previous attribute - capability of being represented graphically. The interpretation of the above mentioned attributes is not possible without the judgements of the Court of Justice of the European Union. It is necessary to take into account the kind of trademark, list of the goods and services, which should be signed by the trademark, and its perception by the public. The paper includes the main judgements of the Court of Justice of the European Union related to the interpretation of the sign that may be registered as the EU trademark. They are very helpful in the application practice of the European Union Intellectual Property Office and the national offices of the intellectual property as well.

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Obstacles in Implementation of the Right to Water

Abstract

The paper discusses the right to water as an integral part of a third generation rights in terms of its feasibility. The author tries to point out the need of participation of the private sector in solutions for effective elimination of indisputable humanitarian crisis in the world caused by scarcity of the clean water and most importantly by inadequate access to clean water sources. A long time struggle towards fighting poverty and ensuring basic need for life only by means of official authorities proves that despite indisputable political and normative progress, states consistently fail in meeting demands of implementation. Therefore the author emphasizes the necessity of cooperative action of a private sector and public sector stemming into a participative solution.

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Rural Landscape Development Policy in Poland – Some Aspects of Sustainability

Abstract

In the recent years, when it comes to topics concerning rural areas and agriculture, sustainability has become a key term resonating in the political, economical, social and environmental discussions. These issues are discussed across the globe and Poland is not an exception. There are many features that have impact on sustainability. Among others it is situation in agricultural production, employment in agriculture, access to the land and situation at the land market, aspects of the environmental protection or the administrative structure of the country. Therefore, the main objective of the presented paper is to a comprehensive summary of different aspects influencing rural development in Poland with an emphasis on sustainability. Based on the conducted analysis it can be stated that even though many positive changes have been implemented in the Polish reality, there are still many issues with need to be urgently addressed.

Open access
Application of the Institute of Income Redistribution in the Form of Social Transfers in EU Countries

Abstract

The reduction in the number of households living at risk of poverty is a common objective of EU countries but the social policy of each member state is different. This paper provides an overview of components of social transfers and their share in total household incomes in EU countries. The aim of the paper is to assess the effectiveness of the social systems of each on the basis of the number of households at risk of poverty determined before and after the payment of social benefits. Four segments of EU countries were identified in cluster analysis according to their approach to social transfer settings using primary data from EU-SILC survey. The combination of high share of social benefits and low share of old age pensions proves to be better in the fight against poverty. The relationship between an economic performance and a functioning social policy system appears in EU countries.

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Circumventing Obligations Through Multinational Military Operations: Legal Consequences for Troop Contributing States

Summary

If member States decide to circumvent their international legal obligations by acting through a military operation led by an international organisation, the institutional veil of which provides a shield against their responsibility for possible wrong-doings, an accountability gap can be identified. The contribution explores one of the possibilities for addressing this gap, the prohibition of circumvention, as enshrined in Art. 61 DARIO. The provision stipulates the possibility to hold the troop contributing States accountable. However, arguably the problems with international organization’s accountability gap cannot be solved in most cases by holding the States responsible over the actions of the MMO. Problematic appears such solution against the necessity to satisfy the thresholds of intent to circumvent and causing the organization to act in certain way, as required by the principle enshrined in the Article 61 DARIO.

Open access
Conceptual Framework and Empirical Methodology for Measuring Multidimensional Judicial Ideology

Abstract

The article presents a conceptual framework and empirical methodology of an on-going research on the role of ideology in the decisions of the Slovenian Constitution Court. The literature review demonstrates that research on judicial ideology in the courts of European countries and international courts is still rare. This can be explained by conceptual, methodological and empirical challenges posed by this type of research. The article hence advances a conceptual framework which is, contra to the mainstream theoretical approach in the field, based on a multidimensional conception of ideology that is empirically operationalised along the economic, social and authoritarian dimensions with five possible ideological positions on each dimension. By applying the newly developed methodology to a sample of Court’s decisions, it is demonstrated that this methodological approach is able to account for ideological differences between judges. This confirms that (judges’) ideology is a complex multidimensional set of values and convictions that cannot be reduced to simply equating ideology with (possible) political affiliations.

Open access
The Connection between Corporate Social Responsibility and Corporate Respect for Human Rights

Abstract

The purpose of this article is to study the connection between corporate respect for human rights and corporate social responsibility. The author argues that business entities have a responsibility to respect human rights and that this responsibility forms part of their corporate social responsibility. The author defends the view that business and human rights issues are distinct from corporate social responsibility issues in their legal nature and content, while the strategic approach in the implementation of these concepts is the same. The author further examines whether voluntary corporate social responsibility initiatives include human rights, and how society understands the connection between the two. The conclusions of the article shed light on the interconnection between these two terms.

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Constitutional aspects of the reform of the Polish justice system in 2017–2018

Summary

The article concerns the issue of constitutionality of the reform of the justice system in Poland in 2017–2018, which resulted in significant changes of the functioning of the National Council of the Judiciary and the Supreme Court. When discussing the reform of the Supreme Court, the author first of all points to the constitutional problems associated with the premature retirement of some of its judges, which is also connected with the interruption of the six-year term of the First President of the Supreme Court. A separate issue discussed in the article is the introduction to the Supreme Court the lay judges, which is a unique phenomenon on the global scale. The analyses lead the author to formulate final conclusions, also referring to the European regulations and to refer to the unconstitutionality of the solutions adopted by the Polish parliament.

Open access