National Origins of European Law: Towards an Autonomous System of European Law?
This paper addresses the driving forces behind EU law, focusing on the exchanges between national legal traditions.
ARENA Working Paper 24/2000 (html)
Hans Petter Graver
To what extent is the law of a country influenced by the laws of another country within Europe, and how are the laws of European countries influenced by one another? Lacking a European state, the term "European law" does not refer to a single body of law, but to the laws of the states within the geographic entity that constitutes Europe. As is well known, national law in many ways influences Community law; measures to harmonise laws in the member states always take as their starting point existing laws in at least some of the member states and differences amongst them. This paper focuses upon the term European law in the sense of laws in countries in Europe. More specifically I will focus upon Nordic law, meaning laws in the countries of the Nordic region; Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. I will address some questions related to how the laws of the Nordic countries influence each other. I will also comment upon how the laws of the Nordic countries influence the legal development in Europe.