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Reproduced from "Study of the systems of private law in the EU with regard to discrimination and the creation of a European Civil Code", European Parliament, Directorate General for Research, Working Paper, Legal Affairs Series, JURI 103 EN (June 1999), Chapter III, 137-150

The Study Group on a European Civil Code

Christian von Bar, Osnabrück

1. Preparation by the legal community in Europe

The preparatory work on a European Civil Code, whatever precise meaning one wishes to attach to that term (see point 3 below), must be performed by the community of European scholars in the domain of private law. They must take the first step, and this they have already done, as is shown by the preceding report on the work of the body known as the Lando Commission. Only legal scholars can conduct the essential basic research; only they have sufficient know-how in the field of comparative law; they alone can set up bodies that are free of particularist interests of a national, political or social nature and be unreservedly committed to the quest for the fairest and most effective legal principles. The legislators' time will come once the academic preparation has been completed. This is not to suggest, of course, that the participating legal scholars have not been seeking and nurturing contacts from the outset with the relevant political authortities, such as the national Ministries of Justice,[1] the European Commission and, of course - as the present study testifies - the European Parliament. In general terms, however, an independent commission of experts has to create a text first so that the politicians and interest groups can be given a basis on which to begin their consultations as soon as possible. How and by what means this can be achieved is the subject of the following paragraphs.

2. Territorial scope of the code

The aim of the legal community must be to formulate a text that could equally be applied to international and to national situations if it were to enter the statute books. The Parliaments may subsequently decide otherwise and may initially adopt a 'European Civil Code' for application to cross-border disputes only, perhaps for a limited time on a trial basis and mainly out of respect for national sensitivities. Let me make it crystal-clear that I should consider such a decision to be wrong from many points of view. For one thing, it would result in the coexistence of two parallel civil-law structures; alongside the European code there would remain the entirely unharmonised national civil codes and [page 137] systems of private law. The need to draw a line between the respective areas of responsibility of the two structures would also raise new and complex demarcation problems, for the time is past when a logical distinction could be made between 'domestic' and 'external' matters in the countries of the EU. Another aim of a European Civil Code, moreover, must be to grasp the opportunity, which is veritably unparalleled in history, to improve and modernise private law in the areas that it covers (of which more below). It would make no sense to restrict this aim to international cases to the exclusion of others. Another point is that what we still tend to refer to rather inadvertently today as an international case today has long since become an interregional case in the EU context, and this process will continue to intensify.[2] This may be seen as merely correcting a terminological slip, but it does indicate where this development will lead. Finally and most importantly, the artificial territorialisation of private law within the European Union has to be overcome. It is essential to demonstrate, through the establishment of a set of principles based primarily on a common core of legal philosophy, that the ius commune Europaeum really does exist.

3. Subject matter

The concept of a civil code derives from the legal tradition of continental Europe. All of the civil codes of the European continent were designed, at least when they first entered into force, to standardise the entire body of private law, including even commercial law in some cases, such as the Italian Codice civile. It is usually said of the German Bürgerliches Gesetzbuch, to take but one example, that it follows the course of people's lives from the cradle to the grave. A European Civil Code can never aspire to such comprehensive coverage, not even in the long term. For many reasons its range of subject matter must remain modest if the Code is to stand a chance of success. In the first instance, at any rate, its objective can only be the creation of a sort of basic law of property upon which the Member States of the European Union can agree without forfeiting their evolved national legal cultures (their legal identities, as some will say) at a single stroke. Unity can therefore grow from a kernel without any overambitious attempts to uproot the rich diversity of legal traditions. Nor would any harm be done to the legal systems of the British Isles. They themselves, after all, already possess partially 'codified' structures, the law on the sale of goods being one example. There are certainly strong arguments in favour of the hypothesis that the Member States' systems of family law no longer diverge so widely as has traditionally been asserted; the principle of sexual equality and the primacy of the children's well-being in family cases have been great levellers in that respect. Nevertheless, family law remains a sensitive area, and anyone venturing into it may be expected to touch numerous raw nerves. In any event, the law of succession is not yet ready for harmonisation, quite apart from the fact that it will remain out of bounds to prospective reformers anyway until the whole domain of property law has been fully explored. There is a long road ahead of us here, especially as the map still shows patches of uncharted territory in which comparative lawyers have yet to set foot.

4. And so it is that the spotlight turns to focus on the law of obligations, which should be the starting point of any effort to draft a European Civil Code. This, however, does not mean that it would be better, or that it would allay the fears that some might have of [page 138] impending change, if we spoke of a European law of obligations right from the start. Europe will have to find and follow its own path. We believe that this path includes the law relating to credit securities; although this domain of the law radiates in turn into the law of property, it must nevertheless be an indispensable element in the first stage of any quest for a European Civil Code.[3] The body of law relating to cross-border security for trade credit and monetary credit is currently in an extremely unsatisfactory state.

5. Creation of the Study Group on a European Civil Code (1998)

As the deliberations on these subjects proceeded, the Study Group on a European Civil Code constituted itself in 1998. The group now comprises about 50 professors from all Member States of the European Union plus some observers from applicant countries, namely the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland. In all three of these countries, work is currently taking place on the modernisation of their respective civil codes, and all three are keen to engage in an intensive exchange of views. That is why some members of the Study Group are also members of the international consultancy teams in those countries. In the event of Scotland opting to create her own civil code - and no decision has yet been taken on this - we shall probably be able to establish close contacts with the relevant commissions there too. Everyone in today's Europe who is involved in the formulation of basic regulatory frameworks in the realm of property law must endeavour to think European, otherwise what should be joined together might once more be put asunder.

6. The initiators of the Study Group began their deliberations by examining the results of an international conference entitled Towards a European Civil Code which was organised by the Dutch Ministry of Justice and took place in The Hague in 1997. The conference itself had been convened in the wake of the two European Parliament resolutions of 1989 and 1994.[4] Despite some sceptical comments,[5] the basic response of the overwhelming majority of the participants to the idea of creating a European Civil Code was so positive and constructive [6] that the establishment of a European study group seemed to offer sufficient prospect of success. The first funding pledges came from three major research-support organisations - the Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), the Nederlandse Organisatie voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek (NWO) and the Onassis Foundation in Athens - which meant that the Study Group could start to take shape, and by the middle of 1999 it was able to begin its real work. In the long run, its success will naturally depend in part on whether the funding for which the group has applied throughout Europe actually materialises (several grant applications are pending at the present time). The current time frame of approximately six years is extremely ambitious and may prove insufficient. [page 139]

7. Relations with other working groups

One of the Study Group's aims is to evaluate the findings of the existing groups that are working in this field and to consolidate them wherever possible while preserving the identity of each group. The group that has hitherto made most progress in this domain is undoubtedly the Commission on European Contract Law, whose chairman, Ole Lando, reported on the Commission's work in the preceding contribution to this study. For that reason, it was important that the initiative to set up the Study Group came from within the Commission of European Contract Law. This means that the Study Group is able to build on the results of previous efforts, the main elements of general contract law having already been set out in the form of legal principles. The Study Group may be said to see itself as a successor organisation to the Commission on European Contract Law with the aims of considerably expanding the range of subject matter covered by the latter's working programme and finding a generally firmer structure.

8. In a spirit of cooperation and pursuit of a common goal, connections have been established with other groups. This applies, for example, to the law governing insurance contracts, a field in which Professor Basedow of the Study Group cooperates with the working party headed by Professor Reichert-Facilides of Innsbruck, and to the working party on the law of tort under the guidance of Professors Spier (Tilburg) and Koziol (Vienna). In this case too, personal links have been established in both directions, with Professor Spier serving as one of the advisers to the permanent working team in Osnabrück (see point 10 below), while Professor Kerameus of Athens was a member of the Storme Commission on the law of civil procedure. The results of the project on the law of contract, headed by Professor Gandolfi of the Accademia dei Giusprivatisti Europei in Pavia are also being carefully monitored. In addition, as I mentioned above, members of the Study Group belong to some Central European consultancy bodies, while countries of Central Europe are sending observers to the Study Group sessions.

9. Organisation of the Study Group

The organisational structure of the Study Group, which must first demonstrate its effectiveness, of course, is as follows: a Steering Committee, comprising seven professors from various jurisdictions in the EU,[7] discusses the sequence of topics for discussion and the schedule of meetings as well as the membership of the group. All the substantive issues and texts are discussed and decided by the Coordinating Group, decisions being taken by a simple majority if a vote is required.[8] The team leaders (see point 10 below) and members of the Steering Committee also belong to the Coordinating Group. The advisers in the permanent working teams (cf. point 10 below) also send [page 140] delegates to the Coordinating Group. The latter will meet at regular intervals and discuss the texts several times over.

10. The submissions to the Coordinating Group come from the working teams. These are international working parties of young lawyers from all parts of the EU and are headed by a team leader, assisted by professors from various legal traditions within the EU who serve as advisers.[9] The purpose of this arrangement is to avoid any restriction of the team's perspective to a particular national view. Permanent working teams are currently being established at four locations: Hamburg, Osnabrück, Tilburg and Utrecht. We hope to be able to set up at least another one and perhaps even two groups in the Mediterranean region of the EU, probably in Rome and/or Athens. The details still have to be settled, however. In accordance with its rules, the Commission on European Contract Law will continue its work, which it expects to conclude around the middle of the year 2000.

11. Priority areas

Each of the permanent working teams is responsible for a group of subjects. In Hamburg the law governing insurance contracts (Basedow group) and the law relating to credit security (Drobnig group) are dealt with. Osnabrück is responsible for the domain of statutory obligations, divided into the continental categories of unjust enrichment, negotiorum gestio and the law of delict (von Bar group). Tilburg treats the general law of service contracts (Barendrecht group), while Utrecht deals with the law on the sale of goods (Hondius group). The subjects to be covered by the Mediterranean group or groups are to be established if possible at a conference in Rome in early July. The areas of activity under discussion are the unresolved issues of contract law, questions relating to property law and general problems of jus personarum. We are still at a very early stage of the planning process here. Irrespective of whether these plans come to fruition, it is certainly safe to say that the core areas of the law of obligations will be covered. Only time will tell how deeply we shall be able to go into details, particularly in the domains of the law governing special contracts and non-contractual liability.

12. In consultation with their advisers, the working teams of the Coordinating Group will initially submit position papers - a procedure that has already proved successful in the Commission on European Contract Law. These papers will serve as the basis for a debate on the main thrust of the Group's efforts, thereby avoiding duplication of effort. The team leaders' contributions to the present study will convey a first impression of the issues that are likely to be discussed by the Coordinating Group in the early stages. Once the first questions have been answered about the general thrust of its proposals, the Group will be able to begin formulating the first draft texts. Everything will have to be discussed several times, and the coordination process will have to start all over again whenever changes are made. [page 141]

13. The aim

When that has all been done, the ultimate aim is to produce a professorial draft of a first basic statute on the law of property in the European Union. The articles with the actual proposed provisions (the 'black-letter rules') will be supplemented with comments, i.e. explanations on the way in which each provision is intended to operate; in this respect too, the Study Group is borrowing from the Principles of European Contract Law. The comments will be supplemented in turn by notes containing comparative references to the autonomous legal systems of the Member States. Although these initial procedures will be conducted, for obvious reasons, in English, the intention is to try from the very beginning, with the aid of the working teams, to ensure that the written texts are made available in each of the major EU languages. At the same time, there will be a need to create more extensive explanatory material in order to inject the draft texts into the European legal discussion, where they can be subjected to analytical scrutiny. The members of the Study Group are naturally willing to give information at any time on the progress of their work to bodies such as the Legal Affairs Committee of the European Parliament, the European Commission and their own national parliaments and governments. A continuous flow of information in the opposite direction would also be useful and is therefore high on our wish list.

Annex: Documentary evidence from the academic discussion on the creation of a European Civil Code

Ewoud Hondius, Utrecht

14. The bulk of the academic discussion on the creation of a European Civil Code in recent years has taken place in Germany, Italy and the Netherlands. In those countries there are even periodicals devoted to the Europeanisation of private law: the German Zeitschrift für Europäisches Privatrecht (ZEuP), the Italian Rivista di diritto europeo and the trilingual European Review of Private Law, which is published in the Netherlands.

15. From the domain of monographic literature, the volume Towards a European Civil Code, the second edition of which appeared in 1999, merits special emphasis. This work contains analyses on a wide range of issues relating to legal policy and the mechanics of legislation. Other works deal in widely varying depth and forms of presentation with specific subjects such as building law, the law of tort or delict,[10] patent law,[11] product [page 143] liability [12] or specific aspects of the general law of contract.[13] Other studies have been devoted to the relationship between the standardisation of property law and private international law.[14]

16. In the contributions by specialists in legal history (for example the German legal historians Wilhelm Brauneder [15], Helmut Coing [16], Reiner Schulze [17] and Reinhard Zimmermann,[18] Guiseppe Gandolfi [19] from Italy, J.H.A. Lokin und W.A. Zwalve [20] from the Netherlands and Peter Stein from the UK [21]) the main theme tends to be the continuing relevance of the ius commune tradition to the contemporary discussion.

17. Although the idea of harmonising private law as a step towards a European Civil Code has met with widespread approval, the voice of scepticism has naturally been heard too.[22]

18. The current deliberations here are the subject of attentive interest and comment outside the European Union too, for example in the United States and Australia.[23] In addition, the Lando Commission's Principles of European Contract Law [24] and the comparable [page 144] Principles of International Commercial Contracts, which were drawn up in the Unidroit framework,[25] have also generated a great deal of detailed discussion.[26]

19. Further reading

The following references naturally represent only a selection from the body of literature on the foregoing subject. Nevertheless, they will give some indication of the breadth and duration of the present discussion on a European Civil Code.

J. Basedow, Editorial, in Common Market Law Review, 1997.
Günther Beitzke, 'Probleme der Privatrechtsangleichung in der Europäischen Wirtschaftsgemeinschaft', in Zeitschrift für Rechtsvergleichung, 1964, pp. 80 et seq.
Roger Brownsword, Geraint Howells and Thomas Wilhelmsson, 'The EC Unfair Contract Terms Directive and Welfarism', in: Roger Brownsword, Geraint Howells and Thomas Wilhelmsson (ed.), Welfarism in Contract Law, Aldershot 1994, pp. 275-301.
Roger Brownsword, Geraint Howells and Thomas Wilhelmsson, 'Between Market and Welfare: Some Reflections on Article 3 of the EC Directive on Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts', in Chris Willett (ed.), Aspects of Fairness in Contract, London, 1996, pp. 25-60.
G. Brüggemeier and C. Joerges, 'Europäisierung des Vertrags- und Haftungsrechts', in P.C. Müller-Graff (ed.), Gemeinsames Privatrecht in der Europäischen Gemeinschaft, Baden-Baden, 1993, pp. 233-286. [page 145]
Richard M. Buxbaum and Klaus J. Hopt, 'Integration Through Law. Europe and the American Federal Experience'. Legal Harmonization and the Business Enterprise, Vol. 4, Berlin, etc., 1988.
Richard M. Buxbaum, Gérard Hertig, Alain Hirsch and Klaus J. Hopt (ed.), European Business Law. Legal and Economic Analyses on Integration and Harmonization, Berlin, etc., 1991.

Mauro Cappelletti (ed.), New Perspectives for a Common Law of Europe, Leyden, etc., 1978.
Corporate Law - the European Dimension, papers given at the Edinburgh conference of the Bar European Group, 1991. London, 1991.

Filip De Ly, Europese Gemeenschap en privaatrecht, inaugural address at the University of Rotterdam. Zwolle, 1993.
Erwin Deutsch, Aspekte für ein europäisches Haftungsrecht - Versuch einer kritischen, dogmatischen Bestandsaufnahme, Karlsruher Forum, 1992.
Erwin Deutsch and Jochen Taupitz (ed), Haftung der Dienstleistungsberufe - natürliche Vielfalt und europäische Vereinheitlichung, Heidelberg, 1993.
Ulrich Drobnig, 'Ein Vertragsrecht für Europa', in Festschrift für Ernst Steindorff, Berlin and New York, 1990, pp. 1141 et seq.
Ulrich Drobnig, 'Substantive Validity', in American Journal of Comparative Law, Vol. 40, 1992, pp. 635-643.
Ulrich Drobnig, 'Private Law in the European Union', in Forum internationale, No 22, September 1996.

J.H.M. van Erp, 'Europees privaatrecht in ontwikkeling?', in Themis en Europa. Een opening van nieuwe grenzen?, Zwolle, 1989, pp. 61-70.

Franco Ferrari, 'Le champ d'application des "Principes pour les contrats commerciaux internationaux" élaborés par Unidroit', in Revue internationale de droit comparé, 1995, pp. 985-993.
Axel Flessner, 'Rechtsvereinheitlichung durch Rechtswissenschaft und Juristenausbildung', in Rabels Zeitschrift für ausländisches und internationales Privatrecht (RabelsZ), 1992, pp. 243-260.
Marcel Fontaine, 'Content and Performance', in American Journal of Comparative Law, Vol. 40, 1992, pp. 645-655.
M.P. Furmston, 'Breach of Contract', in American Journal of Comparative Law, Vol. 40, 1992, pp. 671-674.

Alejandro M. Garro, 'Unification and Harmonization of Private Law in Latin America', in American Journal of Comparative Law, Vol. 40, 1992, pp. 587-616.
Alejandro M. Garro, Armonización y Unificación del derecho privado en América Latina: esfuerzos, tendencias y realidades, Rome, 1992
Jacques Ghestin, 'L'influence des directives communautaires sur le droit français de la responsabilité', in Festschrift Werner Lorenz, Tübingen, 1991.
Jacques Ghestin and Isabelle Marchessaux-Van Melle, 'Les contrats d'adhésion et les clauses abusives en droit français et en droits européens', in Jacques Ghestin and Marcel Fontaine (ed.), La protection de la partie faible dans les rapports contractuels, Paris, 1996, pp. 1-72.
Roy Goode, 'International Restatement of Contract and English Contract Law', in Uniform Law Review, No. 1997-2, pp. 231-248. [page 146]

O.A. Haazen, 'The principle of gross disparity en misbruik van omstandigheden', in BW-krant Jaarboek 1995, pp. 13-38.
C.E. Hauschka, 'Grundprobleme der Privatrechtsfortbildung durch die Europäische Wirtschaftsgemeinschaft', in Juristen Zeitung, 1990, pp. 290-299.
Georges van Hecke, 'Intégration économique et unfication du droit privé', in De Conflictu Legum (Kollewijn Bundel), 1962, pp. 198-208.
M.W. Hesselink, 'De goede trouw bij de uitvoering van de overeenkomst in het Franse recht, de Unidroit Principles en de Principles of European Contract Law', in Europees privaatrecht, 1995, pp. 47-95.
Peter Hommelhoff, 'Zivilrecht under dem Einfluß europäischer Rechtsangleichung', in Archiv für die civilistische Praxis, 1992, pp. 71 et seq.
E.H. Hondius, Naar een Europees burgerlijk recht. Preadvies Vereniging voor Burgerlijk Recht en Nederlandse Vereniging voor Europees Recht, Lelystad, 1993.
Ewoud Hondius, 'Protection of the Weak Party in Dutch Contract Law', in Roger Brownsword, Geraint Howells and Thomas Wilhelmsson (ed.), Welfarism in Contract Law, Dartmouth, 1994, pp. 253-274.
Jérôme Huet, 'Propos amers sur la directive du 5 avril 1993 relative aux clauses abusives', in La Semaine Juridique (JCP), No 1994.1.309.

Erik Jayme, Ein Internationales Privatrecht für Europa, Heidelberg, 1991.

Konstantinos D. Kerameus, 'Procedural Unification: The Need and the Limitations', in I.R. Scott (ed.), International Perspectives on Civil Justice, Essays in honour of Sir Jack I.H. Jacob QC, London, 1990, pp. 47-66.
Cathérine Kessedjian, 'Un exercice de rénovation des sources du droit des contrats du commerce international: les Principes proposés par l'Unidroit', in Revue critique de droit international privé, 1995, pp. 641-670.
L.A.D. Keus, Europees privaatrecht: een bonte lappendeken. Preadvies Vereniging voor Burgerlijk Recht en Nederlandse Vereniging voor Europees Recht, Lelystad, 1993.
Harmen-Jan de Kluiver and Walter Van Gerven (ed.), The European Private Company? Maklu, Antwerp, etc., 1995.
Hein Kötz, 'Gemeineuropäisches Zivilrecht', in Festschrift Zweigert, 1981, pp. 481-500.
Hein Kötz, 'Was erwartet die Rechtsvergleichung von der Rechtsgeschichte?', in Juristen Zeitung, 1992, pp. 20-22.
Hein Kötz, 'Alternativen zur legislatorischen Rechtsvergleichung', in RabelsZ, 1992, pp. 215-242.
Hein Kötz and Axel Flessner, Europäisches Vertragsrecht I, Mohr, Tübingen, 1996 (also published in English: Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1997).
Thijmen Koopmans, 'The Birth Of European Law At The Crossroads Of Legal Traditions', in American Journal of Comparative Law Vol. 39, 1991, pp. 493-507.
Ernst A. Kramer, 'Europäische Privatrechtsvereinheitlichung', in Juristische Blätter, 1988, pp. 477-489.

David A. Levy, 'Contract Formation Under the UNIDROIT Principles of International Commercial Contracts, UCC, Restatement, and CISG', in Uniform Commercial Code Law Journal, Vol. 30, 1998, pp. 249-332.
Nicolò Lipari (ed.), Diritto privato europeo, 2 vols, Padua, 1997. [page 147]
A.G. Lubbers and W. Westbroek (ed.), Company Law in a European Perspective, Deventer, 1993.
Marcus Lutter, 'Die Auslegung angeglichenen Rechts', in Juristen Zeitung, 1992, pp. 593-607.

H.P. Mansel, 'Rechtsvergleichung und europäische Rechtseinheit', in Juristen Zeitung, 1991, pp. 529-534.
Dietrich Maskow, 'Hardship and Force Majeure', in American Journal of Comparative Law, Vol. 40, 1992, pp. 657-669.
Jacques Massip, 'L'harmonisation du droit des personnes et de la famille: la contribution de la C.I.E.C.', in La Commission Internationale de l'Etat Civil, Strasbourg, 1982, pp. 15-30.
Luigi Mengoni, L'Europa dei codici o un codice per l'Europa?, Centro di studie e ricerche di diritto comparato e straniero, Rome, 1993.
Rudolf Meyer, Bona fides und lex mercatoria in der europäischen Rechtstradition (thesis), Göttingen, 1994.
Hans W. Micklitz, 'AGB-Gesetz und die EG-Richtlinie über mißbräuchliche Vertragsklauseln in Verbraucherverträgen', in Zeitschrift für Europäisches Privatrecht, 1993, pp. 522-535.
Hans W. Micklitz, 'Ein einheitliches Kaufrecht für Verbraucher in der EG?', in Europäische Zeitschrift für Wirtschaftsrecht, 1997, pp. 229-237.
Peter-Christian Müller-Graff, Privatrecht und Europäisches Gemeinschaftsrecht/Gemeinschaftsprivatrecht, 2nd ed., Baden-Baden, 1991.
Peter-Christian Müller-Graff, 'Europäisches Gemeinschaftsrecht und Privatrecht', in Neue Juristische Wochenschrift, 1993, pp. 13-23.
Peter-Christian Müller-Graff, 'Gemeinsames Privatrecht in der Europäischen Gemeinscahft: Ebenen und gemeinschaftsprivatrechtliche Grundfragen', in Festschrift für Bodo Börner zum 70. Geburtstag, Cologne, Berlin, Bonn and Munich, 1993, pp. 303-343.

Projet de directive sur le rapprochement des lois et règles des Etats-Membres concernant certains aspects de la procédure civile, Rapport final (Storme Commission), Ghent, 1992.
Hanns Prütting, 'Auf dem Weg zu einer Europäischen Zivilprozeßordnung, dargestellt am Beispiel des Mahnverfahrens', in Festschrift Baumgärtel, 1990, pp. 457-469.

Norbert Reich, 'Garantien unter Gemeinschaftsrecht', in Europäische Zeitschrift für Wirtschaftsrecht, 1995, pp. 71-77.
Norbert Reich, Europäisches Verbraucherrecht, Baden-Baden, 1996.
Oliver Remien, 'Ansätze für ein Europäisches Vertragsrecht', in Zeitschrift für die Vergleichende Rechtswissenschaft, 1988, pp. 105-122.
Oliver Remien, 'Möglichkeit und Grenzen eines europäisches Privatrechts', in Jahrbuch Junger Zivilrechtswissenschaftler, 1991, pp. 11-42.
Oliver Remien, 'Illusion und Realität eines europäischen Privatrechts', in Juristen Zeitung, 1992, pp. 277-284.
Oliver Remien, 'Rechtseinheit ohne Einheitsgesetze?', in RabelsZ, 1992, pp. 300-316.
F. Rittner, 'Das Gemeinschaftsprivatrecht und die europäische Integration', in Juristen Zeitung, 1995, pp. 849-858.
H.D.C. Roscam Abbing, 'Patiënt en gezondheidszorg in het recht van de Europese Gemeenschap', in Proceedings Vereniging voor Gezondheidsrecht, 1993.
Arthur Rosett, 'Unification, Harmonization, Restatement, Codification, and Reform in International Commercial Law', in American Journal of Comparative Law, 1992, pp. 683-697. [page 148]

Geoffrey Samuel and Jac Rinkes, Contractual and non-contractual obligations in English law (thesis, Maastricht). Nijmegen, 1992.
J.G. Sauveplanne, 'Van verscheidenheid naar eenheid van privaatrecht', in Koninklijke Nederlandse Akademie van Wetenschappen, Mededeling van de Afdeling Letterkunde, Nieuwe Reeks, Vol. 55, No. 9, Amsterdam, 1992.
Peter Schlechtriem, 'Verbraucherkaufverträge - ein neuer Richtlinienentwurf', in Juristen Zeitung, 1997, pp. 441-447.
Bruno Schmidlin (ed.), Vers un droit privé européen commun?, Basle, 1994.
Uwe Schneider, 'Europäische und internationale Harmonisierung des Bankvertragsrechts - zugleich ein Beitrag zur Angleichung des Privatrechts in der Europäischen Gemeinschaft', in Neue Juristische Wochenschrift, 1991, pp. 1985-1993.
Jürgen Schwarze, European Administrative Law, London and Luxembourg, 1992.
J.M. Smits, 'Een Europees privaatrecht als gemengd rechtsstelsel', in Nederalds Juristenblad (NJB), 1998, pp. 61-66.
G.M.F. Snijders, 'De Europese dimensie van de pacht', inaugural address at the University of Nijmegen. Deventer, 1993.
G.J.W. Steenhoff, 'Naar een Europees privaatrecht?', in Recht als norm en als aspiratie, Nijmegen, 1986, pp. 85-101.
Ernst Steindorff, EG-Vertrag und Privatrecht, Baden-Baden, 1996.
Marcel Storme and Lord Mansfield, 'Portalis of von Savigny? Overwegingen over de eenmaking van het recht in Europa i.h.b. via de vergelijkende rechtspraak', in Tijdschrift voor Privaatrecht, 1991, pp. 849-887.

Denis Tallon, 'Vers un droit européen du contrat?', in Mélanges offerts à André Colomer, Paris, 1992, pp. 485-494.
Denis Tallon, 'Damages, Exemption Clauses, and Penalties, in American Journal of Comparative Law, No 40, 1992, pp. 675-682.
Jochen Taupitz, Europäische Privatrechtsvereinheitlichung heute und morgen, Tübingen, 1993.
Gunther Teubner, 'Legal Irritants: Good Faith in British Law or How Unifying Law Ends Up in New Divergences', in Modern Law Review, 1998, pp. 11-32.
Winfried Tilmann, 'Zur Entwicklung eines europäischen Zivilrechts', in Festschrift Oppenhoff zum 80. Geburtstag, 1985, pp. 497-507.
Winfried Tilmann, Wirtschaftsrecht, Berlin, Heidelberg, New York and Tokyo, 1986.
Winfried Tilmann, 'EG-Kodifikation des wirtschaftsnahen Zivilrechts', in Juristen Zeitung, 1991, p. 1023.
B.W.M. Trompenaars, Pluriforme unificatie en uniforme interpretatie (thesis, Utrecht). Deventer, 1993.

Peter Ulmer, 'Vom deutschen zum europäischen Privatrecht?', in Juristen Zeitung, 1992, pp. 1-8.

F.J.A. van der Velden, 'Europa 1992 en het eenvormig privaatrecht', in D. Kokkini-Iatridou and F.W. Grosheide (ed.), Eenvormig en vergelijkend privaatrecht 1990, Lelystad, 1990, pp. 3-28.
Martin Vranken, Fundamentals of European Civil Law, Blackstone, London, 1997 (290 pp.). [page 149]

B. Wachter, Elk volk krijgt het recht dat bij zijn aard past, farewell lecture at Tilburg. Zwolle, 1992.
A.J.O. van Wassenaer van Catwijck, Naar een Europees verkeersschaderecht, farewell lecture at the Vrije Universiteit, Deventer, 1993.
Wege zu einem europäischen Zivilprozeßrecht. Symposium held in Tübingen to mark the 80th birthday of Fritz Baur. Tübingen, 1992.
Wolfgang Wiegand, 'The Reception of American Law in Europe', in American Journal of Comparative Law, Vol. 39, 1991, pp. 229-248.
Michael R. Will, 'Autonome Rechtsangleichung in Europa', in Fritz Schwind (ed.), Österreichs Weg in die EG - Beiträge zur europäischen Rechtsentwicklung, Vienna, 1991, pp. 53-109.
Chris Willett (ed.), Aspects of Fairness in Contract, London, 1996.
Bruno de Witte and Caroline Forder (ed.), The common law of Europe and the future of legal education/Le droit commun de l'Europe et l'avenir de l'enseignement juridique, Deventer, 1992.

W.J. Zwalve, 'De natie en de toekomst van haar codificatie', in Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Burgerlijk Recht, 1992, pp. 92-97.
K. Zweigert and H. Kötz, An Introduction to Comparative Law, 3rd ed., Oxford, 1998 (translated by T. Weir). [page 150]


1. Such contacts have already been established. The liaison officer from the German Ministry of Justice has already presented the project of the Study Group on a European Civil Code to the K4 Committee, a high-ranking EU authority in the realm of justice and home affairs, to the other Member States and to the European Commission and has asked for their support; see Schmidt-Jortzig, 'Perspektiven der Europäischen Privatrechtsangleichung', in Anwaltsblatt (AnwBl), 1998, pp. 63-66 (especially p. 66).

2. See Konstantinos Kerameus in chapter I above, point 23.

3. Cf. the contributions to this study by Ulrich Drobnig.

4. For details, see footnote 1 of the preface to the present study.

5. See for example Markesinis, 'Why a code is not the best way to advance the cause of European legal unity', in European Review of Private Law (ERPL) No 5, 1997, pp. 519-524.

6. The papers presented at the conference and a summary of the discussions are reproduced in ERPL, Vol. 5 (1997), No 4, pp. 455-547.

7. At the present time, the members are Professors Guido Alpa (Rome and Genoa), Laurent Aynès (Paris), Christian von Bar (Osnabrück), Ulrich Drobnig (Hamburg), Roy Goode (Oxford), Arthur Hartkamp (The Hague) and Ole Lando (Copenhagen).

8. The present members, excluding the members of the Steering Committee and the advisers, are Professors Hugh Beale (Warwick), William Binchy (Dublin), Eric Dirix (Leuven), Christian Hultmark (Gothenburg), Konstantino Kerameus (Athens), Hector McQueen (Edinburgh), Encarna Roca y Trias (Barcelona), Jorge Sinde Monteiro (Coimbra), Lena Sisula-Tulokas (Helsinki) und (as an observer) Jerzy Rajski (Warsaw).

9. These advisory groups are still being formed. The following are members of the group on the law of delict: Professors Blackie (Strathclyde University, Glasgow), Castronovo (Milan), Kleinemann (Stockholm) und Spier (Tilburg and The Hague); the group on unjust enrichment and negotiorum gestio comprises Professors Gomes (Oporto), Hastad (Stockholm), McKendrick (London), Mestre (Aix-en-Provence) and Schlechtriem (Freiburg).

10. Christian von Bar, Gemeineuropäisches Deliktsrecht, Vol. I, Munich, 1996 (published in English as A Common European Law of Torts), and Vol. II, Munich, 1999.

11. J.J. Brinkhof, Europees octrooirecht, inaugural address at the University of Utrecht. Zwolle, 1989.

12. J.M. Barendrecht, Produktenaansprakelijkheid: Europees Burgerlijk Recht? Specialist's report for the Vereniging voor burgerlijk recht, Lelystad, 1987.

13. C. Armbrüster, 'Europäisierung des Schuldrechts? - zur Reform des deutschen Unmöglichkeitsrechts im Vergleich zum Code Civil', in Juristische Arbeitsblätter, 1991, pp. 252-257.

14. Christian von Bar (ed.), Europäisches Gemeinschaftsrecht und Internationales Privatrecht, Cologne, etc., 1991, and K. Boele-Woelki, Principles en IPR - Enkele beschouwingen over de toepassing van de UNIDROIT Principles of International Commercial Contracts en de Principles of European Contract Law, inaugural address at the University of Utrecht, 1995.

15. Wilhelm Brauneder, Europäisches Privatrecht: historische Wirklichkeit oder zeitbedingter Wunsch an die Geschichte? Publication No 23, Centro di studi e ricerche di diritto comparato e straniero, Rome, 1997.

16. Helmut Coing, Europäisches Privatrecht, 1985/1989; ibid., 'Europäisierung der Rechtswissenschaft', in Neue Juristische Wochenschrift, 1990, pp. 937-941.

17. Reiner Schulze, Die europäische Rechts- und Verfassungsgeschichte - zu den gemeinsamen Grundlagen europäischer Rechtskultur, Saarbrücken, 1991; ibid., 'European Legal History - A New Field of Research in Germany', in Journal of Legal History, No 13, 1992, pp. 270-295.

18. Reinhard Zimmermann, The Law of Obligations - Roman Foundations of the Civilian Tradition, Cape Town, Wetton and Johannesburg, 1990; ibid., 'Das römisch-katholische ius commune als Grundlage europäischer Rechtseinheit', in Juristen Zeitung, 1992, pp. 8-20.

19. Giuseppe Gandolfi, 'Pour un code européen des contrats', in Revue trimestrielle de droit civil, 1992, pp. 707-736.

20. J.H.A. Lokin and W.J. Zwalve, Hoofdstukken uit de Europese Codificatiegeschiedenis, 1st ed., Groningen, 1986.

21. Peter Stein (ed.), Il futuro codice europeo dei contratti, Milan, 1993.

22. Pierre Legrand, 'Against a European Civil Code', in Modern Law Review, Vol. 60, Issue 1, 1997, pp. 44-63 ; see also Markesinis, footnote 5 above.

23. For details see Martin Vranken, Fundamentals of European Civil Law, Blackstone, London, 1997 (290 pp.).

24. Hugh Beale, 'Towards a Law of Contract for Europe: the Work of the Commission on European Contract Law', in Günter Weick (ed.), National and European Law on the Threshold to the Single Market, pp. 177-196; ibid., 'The "Europeanisation" of Contract Law', in R. Halson (ed.), Exploring the Boundaries of Contract, Dartmouth, 1996, pp. 23-47; Carlo Castronovo, 'I "Principi di diritto europeo dei contratti" e l'idea di codice', in Rivista del diritto commerciale e del diritto generale delle obbligazioni, 1995, pp. 1-38; M.J. Hoekstra, 'De UNIDROIT Principles of International Commercial Contracts en de Principles of European Contract Law: een vergelijking', in Europees privaatrecht 1996, Lelystad, 1996, pp. 3-43; Isabelle de Lamberterie, Georges Rouhette and Denis Tallon, Les principes du droit européen du contrat/L'exécution, l'inexécution et ses suites, La documentation Française, Paris, 1997; Ole Lando, 'Principles of European Contract Law', in Liber Memorialis François Laurent, Brussels, 1989, pp. 555-568; ibid., 'Principles of European Contract Law/An Alternative or a Precursor of European Legislation', in Rabels Zeitschrift für ausländisches und internationales Privatrecht, 1992, pp. 261-273; Ole Lando and Hugh Beale (ed.), The Principles of European Contract Law. Vol. I: Performance, Non-Performance and Remedies, Dordrecht, 1995; Reinhard Zimmermann, 'Konturen eines Europäischen Vertragsrechts', in Juristen Zeitung, 1995, pp. 477-491.

25. J.P. Béraudo, 'Les principes d'Unidroit relatifs au droit du commerce international', in Juris classeur périodique, 1995, Doctrine 3842; Klaus Peter Berger, 'Die Unidroit-Prinzipien für Internationale Handelsverträge/Indiz für ein autonomes Weltwirtschaftsrecht?' in Zeitschrift für Vergleichende Rechtswissenschaft, 1995, pp. 217-236; M.J. Bonell, 'Unification of Law by Non-Legislative Means: the UNIDROIT Draft Principles for International Commercial Contracts', in American Journal of Comparative Law, Vol. 40, 1992, pp. 617-633; ibid., 'Die UNIDROIT-Prinzipien der internationalen Handelsverträge: Eine neue Lex Mercatoria?', in Zeitschrift für Rechtsvergleichung, 1996, pp. 152-157; ibid., 'The Unidroit Principles of International Commercial Contracts and the Principles of European Contract Law: Similar Rules for the Same Purposes?', in Uniform Law Review, 1996, pp. 229-246; ibid., 'The Unidroit Principles in practice: the experience of the first two years', in Uniform Law Review, 1997, pp. 30-41; ibid., An International Restatement of Contract Law/The UNIDROIT Principles of International Commercial Contracts, 2nd ed., Transnational Publishers, Irvington, N.Y., 1997; A.S. Hartkamp, 'The UNIDROIT Principles for International Commercial Contracts and the New Dutch Civil Code', in CJHB Brunner Bundel, Deventer, 1994, pp. 127-137; ibid, 'The Unidroit Principles for International Commercial Contracts and the United Nations Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods', in Comparability and Evaluation. Kokkini Bundel, Dordrecht, 1994, pp. 85-98.

26. See also Klaus Peter Berger, Formalisierte oder "schleichende" Kodifizierung des transnationalen Wirtschaftsrechts, Berlin, 1996.

Pace Law School Institute of International Commercial Law - Last updated November 19, 2002
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