Anne PetersAnne Peters

Anne Peters, ‘Membership in the Global Constitutional Community’ in Jan Klabbers, Anne Peters and Geir Ulfstein, The Constitutionalization of International Law (Oxford University Press 2009) pp. 153-179.


Anne Peters is one of the Directors of the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg. She was formerly a professor of international law at the University of Basel. It is here that she strongly contributed, based upon her constitutional understanding of European Integration, to the theory of constitutionalization of public international law. In Membership in the Global Constitutional Community Anne Peters provides an innovative and informative take on the changing face of the international legal order. She challenges the widely held view of the state as the sole member of the international community presenting historical evidence and contemporary examples for the inclusion of non-state actors and argues that the ‘primary international legal persons should be natural persons’.


The opening of Anne Peters Membership in the Global Constitutional Community explores the changing landscape of the international legal order and challenges the widely held norm that states are the only members in public international law. Recognising that the international legal order is an international community, where relationships between members are governed by law not force, helps to counter claims that the international community is not merely an oligarchy with certain states driving their specific norms. Furthermore Peters puts forward that natural persons should be the primary international legal persons and therefore the primary members of the global constitutional community. The constitutionalist paradigm Peters believes is a useful extension of the concept of international community. Through invoking the principle of democracy it makes visible and can argue against the privileges of some states while arguing for the inclusion of non-state actors into public international law.


You can find a scan (PDF) of the original text here: PETERS Constitutionalization

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