Legal Argumentation: Reasoned Dissensus and Common Ground

On June 25 and 26, 2020, the International Conference ‘Legal argumentation: reasoned dissensus and common ground’ will take place at the Erasmus School of Law, Rotterdam the Netherlands. The aim of the conference is to draw together scholars from a variety of disciplines that are working in the field of legal argumentation.

Keynote speakers
  • Amalia Amaya (National Autonomous University of Mexico, Institute for Philosophical Research)
  • Christian Dahlman (Lund University, Department of Law)
  • Paul van den Hoven (Utrecht University, Utrecht Institute of Linguistics; Xiamen School of Journalism and Communication, Xiamen)

A central aim of argumentation in legal discussions is a rational and reasonable solution of legal disagreements. To reach results that are acceptable in light of the Rule of Law, one of the characteristics of legal discussions is that certain institutional constraints and procedures are required. The acceptability of legal decision making depends on the procedures of reasoned dissensus.

The aim of this conference is to inquire into central themes concerning legal disagreements and the role of procedures and discussion rules to reach rational solutions, in the absence of consensus, through procedures of reasoned dissensus.

The conference themes include, but are not limited to:

  • Consensus and dissensus in argumentation in legislation
  • Consensus and dissensus in argumentation in legal decision making
  • Dissenting and concurring opinions in legal decisions
  • The role of argumentation in empirical disagreements and disagreements about the law
  • Fallacies and dissensus
  • Legal argumentation in the context of theoretical disagreement, Legal Positivism, and Dworkins position
  • The role of legal argumentation in alternative dispute resolution and the search for reasoned consensus
  • The role of legal argumentation in dissensus and plurality decisions
  • The role of legal argumentation in the search for common ground: the third layer of the Rule of Law
  • Formal reconstructions of legal argumentation in procedures of dispute resolution (in logic, AI and Law)
  • Legal argumentation and procedural justice
Organizing committee:
  • Eveline Feteris (University of Amsterdam, Department of Speech Communication, Argumentation Theory and Rhetoric)
  • Harm Kloosterhuis (Erasmus School of Law, Rotterdam)
  • José Plug (University of Amsterdam, Department of Speech Communication, Argumentation Theory and Rhetoric)
  • Carel Smith, (Leiden University, Faculty of Law)