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LAW 707 - Comparative Law (Prof. Ludsin, Spring 2017)   Tags: comparative law, foreign law  

Last Updated: Jun 7, 2017 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

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Comparative Law

Secondary sources on comparative law may compare legal traditions, compare the law of different countries, or compare the law on specific legal topics in different countries. Some may include citations, summaries, or analysis of the laws of countries or regions. 

In discoverE, search for works with title or subject "comparative law," but also those with subjects of comparative or international law and the topic of interest, works with regions or multiple countries in their subject descritpions, and works on civil or common law.

Recommended treatises and reference works on comparative law include:

  • Peter Hay, Selected Essays on Comparative Law and Conflict of Laws, K7041 .H49 2015
  • Mathias Siems, Comparative Law, K583 .S587 2014
  • Jaakko Husa, A New Introduction to Comparative Law, K559 .H87 2015
  • Methods of Comparative Law, K559 .M48 2012
  • Mary Ann Glendon, Comparative Legal Traditions in a Nutshell, Study Aids K560 .G43 2016
  • The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Law K48 .O96 2006
  • The Cambridge Companion to Comparative Law K449 .C36 2012

Any academic law journals on international law may include articles on comparative law, but some journals with more of a focus on comparative law include:


Research Guides

Research guides are good starting points for a project on foreign or comparative law. They may provide descriptions of the legal systems of other countries, titles and sources for primary and official resources, citations and links to legal resources, and tips and suggestions for research in the law of other jurisdictions.

Emory Law LibraryLibGuides on Foreign and Comparative Law. Emory's own research guides will list sources available at Emory and links to Emory's subscription datatabases.

NYU GlobaLex Guides: Detailed guides to research in the law of an extensive list of jurisdictions, plus guides to doing comparative law research.

NYU Law Library: Foreign Law by Jurisdiction guide with subject-specific sources and another extensive list of jurisdictional databases.

Library of Congress:  Foreign Law Research Guides for select jurisdictions with introduction to their legal systems, official sources, and print and web resources.

Law Library of Congress: Guide to Law Online: Nations of the World: Resources for most countries of the world with links to primary resources, legal guides, and general information sources.

Oxford Bodleian Library: Legal Resources for Jurisdictions. Research guides for select jurisdictions with descriptions of legal systems, sources of primary resources, citation information, and sources for legal news. 

Foreign Law Guide (subscription database):  The Foreign Law Guide has entries for most countries of the world, with descriptions of their legal systems and history, and references to primary sources, topical sources, and English translations. The Subject Headings for each country cite statutes and publications on subject areas of the law.


Country Reports

You can use country reports on the governments and legal systems of other countries to find background information, official languages, history and information on systems of government, directories of government agencies, and information on legal systems.

  • Juriglobe: Classification of legal systems of other countries.  Find maps and explanations classifying countries as having civil law, common law, Muslim law, customary law, or mixed legal systems.
  • World Justice Project: rule of Law Index and Country Profiles on the country’s adherence to the rule of law.
  • State Department Reports: Major State Department publications and reports, including Country Fact Sheets, Human Rights Reports, and Country Reports on Terrorism
  • Europa World (subscription database): Country profiles, including recent history, government, and statistics.  Includes information on elections and recent events, constitutional and economic information, and government directories.
  • OECD iLibrary: Reports and statistics by theme and country, including reports on taxation, finance, energy, trade, and development
  • Modern Legal Systems Cyclopedia (1984-2005) (K530 .M62).  Available online through Hein Online's World Constitutions. 
  • Library of Congress Country Studies (Area Handbook SeriesPublished between 1967 and 2002. Topics include historical background, society, government systems. A larger and older collection of the country studies are in the Hein World Constitutions database.

Books and Treatises

In discoverE, search for works with the countries you are researching with subjects searches like "Law - Peru," "Corporation law - China," or "products liability - Europe." The law library's holdings includes print treatises on the 4th floor of the library and ebooks from Oxford Scholarship Online, Cambridge Books Online, and Elgar Online, with links from the catalog.

You can find lists of compilations of foreign laws, including both treatises and databases with links, under the tabs for Foreign Law Sources: General and Foreign Law Sources: Topical.



Databases to search for articles on the law of other countries include:

International & Non-US Law Journals (Hein Online)

Index to Foreign Legal Periodicals (Hein Online): Index to books and law review articles from other countries, with links to articles available in Hein Online or through other databases available at Emory.

vLex Global: Includes foreign law journals and newspapers (some in English), arranged by country. Jurisdictions in vLex Global from around the world, but largest collections are for Latin America and Romance-language European countries.

 JSTOR: Full-text, pdf journals, including older volumes. Disciplines include African Studies, Asian Studies, International Relations, Latin American Studies, Law, Middle East Studies, Political Science, and Public Policy & Administration.

CIAO (Columbia International Affairs Online): Journal articles, books, working papers, policy briefs, and reports and studies from NGOs and think tanks on international affairs and foreign relations. Filters for searches include geographical, content type, publisher, and topic (including politics, development, government, and international law).


News and Current Awareness

Global Legal Monitor (Law Library of Congress): A review of major legal news stories from around the world, arranged by topic and jurisdiction.  Most articles include links to primary sources or to news sites. 

Jurist World Legal News: News stories on foreign courts and legal issues, with links to primary documents and news sites.

ASIL (American Society of International Law) current awareness sources include national courts and parliaments on international law, constitutional law, and human rights:

  • ASIL Insights: Brief analysis of international law news stories in international and national courts and IGOs
  • ASIL International Law in Brief: Blog with abstracts of and links to new primary documents in international law, updating International Legal Materials.

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