Personalized Law / Law by Algorithm

Event date
16 June 2022
Event time
12:30 - 18:00
Oxford week
TT 8
St Hugh's College / Maplethorpe Hall


Technological developments such as digitization, Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Blockchain are fundamentally changing law-making, legal practice and legal scholarship. This is the background for two books released in 2021: “Personalized Law” (OUP) by Omri Ben-Shahar and Ariel Porat, and “Law by Algorithm” (Mohr Siebeck) by Horst Eidenmüller and Gerhard Wagner. While a growing body of literature asks how the law should regulate commercial algorithms—prominent among it is the recent book “How Big-Tech Barons Smash Innovation” (HarperBus) by Ariel Ezrachi and Maurice Stucke—this conference reverses the inquiry, asking whether algorithms can improve the law.

The first panel on “Personalized Law” explores the potential and challenges of “Different Rules for Different People”. It posits that “Personalized Law” is a precision tool which has the potential to accomplish the underlying goals of any law more effectively. The second panel on “Law by Algorithm” seeks to understand the implications of the technological revolution for private transactions, private law and dispute resolution. A recurring theme of the book is that “Law by Algorithm” helps to massively increase the welfare in our societies and, at the same time, creates the significant risk that this increased welfare benefits only a few of its members.

This symposium will explore historical, constitutional, philosophical and jurisprudential issues of “Personalized Law” and “Law by Algorithm”. What is new about “Personalized Law”? Is it constitutionally and philosophically defensible to replace the fundamental principle of egality under the law with “Different Laws for Different People”? What can private law do to discipline BigTech and make “Law by Algorithm” work for the many and not just the few?

Register to attend the event in person here.


12.30  Lunch

1.30    Personalized Law: The Historical, Philosophical, and Constitutional Dimension

            Omri Ben-Shahar (Chicago)               

            Chair:             Kristin van Zwieten (Oxford)

            Speakers:      Wolfgang Ernst (Oxford)

 Sandy Steel (Oxford)

 Rebecca Williams (Oxford) 

                                    Timothy Endicott (Oxford)

                                    Louisa Specht (Bonn)                  

3.30    Coffee Break

4.00    Law by Algorithm: BigTech vs. The People

            Horst Eidenmüller (Oxford), Gerhard Wagner (HU Berlin)

            Chair:             Luca Enriques (Oxford)

            Speakers:       John Armour (Oxford)

                                    Marietta Auer (MPI Frankfurt)

                                    Christoph Grigoleit (Munich)

                                    Birke Haecker (Oxford)

                                    Aislinn Kelly-Lyth (Oxford)

                                    Rory Van Loo (Boston University)

                                    Ariel Ezrachi (Oxford)            

6.00    Close

Found within

Business Law