Official project launch - Judges under Stress JuS - the Breaking Point of Judicial Institutions

The Faculty of Law invites to the official launch of the first “Toppforsk-project” at the faculty, Judges under Stress JuS - the Breaking Point of Judicial Institutions.

The rise of illiberal democracies and autocratic rule in Europe is first and foremost a “Rule of law backslide”. This timely project researches our recent history and asks the questions:

  • How do rulers seek judicial compliance with authoritarian measures,
  • how do judges react to such measures,
  • and what are the conditions under which an independent judiciary breaks down?

The project brings in researchers from Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania, together with a network of scholars from all over Europe to address these questions from legal, historical, sociological and philosophical points of view. The project engages with the Court Administration of Norway, and with judicial councils and judges’ associations in several countries.


The program of the launch event is at follows:

Dean of the Faculty of Law professor Dag Michalsen: Studies of Judicial Institutions and the Research Strategy of the Faculty of Law

Project leader professor Hans Petter Graver: The Importance of Studies of Legal Institutions to the Education of Tomorrows Lawyers

Associate professor, University of Gdansk Magdalena Konopacka/ PhD researcher Lukasz Bojarski: The Legacy of Communist Law and the situation of Judges in Present Day Poland

More about the project

The project leader, professor Hans Petter Graver has a long-standing interest in the study of  judges in different regimes – like under the German occupation under World War II in Norway. The present study will focus on Central European countries Polen, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary.

  • Some of the research questions is how do different political regimes consider judicial profession. Furthermore: what is the heritage of the communist policies in post-communist countries – says Peter  Curos, postdoc from Slovakia.  

The research team decided to explore the historical legacy of the judicial institutions, using cross-disciplinary methods of legal theory, legal history and legal sociology. They will also  describe the past and look at the present: how did the judicial institutions develop until nowadays.

  • The importance of the project lies in the fact that it is not possible to understand what and why is happening in the present, without proper understanding of the past – says Hans Petter Graver.

The Project is financed by FRIPRO-funding from the Research Council of Norway and the University of Oslo.

Project website:




Published Apr. 30, 2019 3:22 PM - Last modified May 13, 2019 4:12 PM