"Rechtsfolge" - The Law Faculty's New Podcast

What actually happens at the Faculty of Law at the University of Bern? What do legal academics, lawyers, and jurists do when they conduct research? What do they research about and why? Our podcast "Rechtsfolge" aims to dig deeper on these and many other questions. We talk to different professors, postdocs, phDs, and others scholars from our departments to find out what drives and constitutes their research in private, criminal, and public law. Whether it is corporate criminal law, gender law, human rights, greenwashing through financial investments or state neutrality: We will discuss it!

Interview with Prof. Dr. Jürgen Brönnimann If you want to experience justice, it may be necessary for you to go to court from time to time. While our legal system distinguishes between civil, criminal and administrative law, it is difficult in practice to make a clear distinction between these areas of law. If a criminal offense is committed, for example, the state and those affected are not only faced with the question of guilt or innocence, but for injured private individuals there is also the question of how their civil law claims should be dealt with. So how do criminal and civil proceedings interact? What principles characterize these two areas of procedural law and in what respects do they differ? In Rechtsfolge 13, we spoke with Prof. Dr. Jürgen Brönnimann about the interfaces between criminal and civil procedural law, which have been little discussed to date. Prof. Dr. Brönnimann studied law in Bern and Berlin and was a research assistant at the University of Bern in the fields of commercial law, civil procedural law and debt collection and bankruptcy law. He wrote his dissertation on "The burden of proof and substantiation in Swiss civil procedure law" and has been an honorary professor since 2000. In addition to his many years as a lawyer in a Bernese commercial law firm, Prof. Brönnimann teaches Swiss and Bernese civil procedural law at the Faculty of Law of the University of Bern.
Interview with Dr. Stefan Schlegel The Swiss Federal Constitution states succinctly in Art. 26: "Property is guaranteed". The guarantee of property has been one of our constitutionally protected rights since the 19th Century. But what exactly does the guarantee of property protect? What does property mean? And does this fundamental right still correspond to the economic, social and technological developments of our time? Or do we need to move toward "the new property"? We spoke to Dr. iur. Stefan Schlegel about this in Rechtsfolge 12. Dr. iur. Stefan Schlegel studied law at the University of Zurich and worked as a research assistant and doctoral candidate in migration law at the University of Bern. After research stays at the University of Toronto and at the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Multiethnic and Multireligious Societies in Göttingen, he first worked as a senior assistant at the Institute of Public Law at the University of Bern and was then an Ambizione Fellow of the Swiss National Science Foundation. Since February 2024, Dr. iur. Stefan Schlegel operates as the Director of the Swiss Human Rights Institution (SMRI). In his habilitation, Dr. Stefan Schlegel examines the scope of protection of the property guarantee in detail and works, among other things, on new forms of ownership.
Interview with Julia Lehmann, Vera Moser and Rafael Studer. 6,445 people were imprisoned in Switzerland at the beginning of 2023, the majority of which are not serving a sentence, but held captive under the law on measures. Today, it is well known that some of these people are "false positives" - people who are deemed dangerous but who would not reoffend if they were released. How - if at all - can such a system be legitimized under the rule of law? How does the law understand "dangerousness"? And in particular: Can we measure it? We discussed these issues with Julia Lehmann, Vera Moser and Rafael Studer in Rechtsfolge 11. Julia Lehmann, Vera Moser and Rafael Studer are doctoral students and assistants at the Institute of Criminal Law and Criminology at the University of Bern. Among other things, they deal intensively with questions of the law on measures. Their article "Falsch-Positive im Massnahmenrecht - Eine Debattenanalyse" was just published in the Neue Zeitschrift für Kriminologie und Kriminalpolitik.
Switzerland is Europe's moated castle. Our water is an indispensable resource for our country and the people dependent on it, be it as drinking water, as a resource for food production or hydropower, or for preserving our ecosystems. However, climate change seriously threatens waters, be it its availability, access, or quality. How can water bodies be better protected in law? Should we give water bodies legal personality in order to protect them better? How could a new legal entity for waters be integrated into our legal system? And what consequences would this have? These are just a few of the many questions we discussed with Dr. Fiona Leu in Legal Episode 10. Dr. Fiona Leu wrote her dissertation on the topic of "Building uncomfortable worlds - An attempt to include surface waters into the modern legal system". She studied law at the Universities of Bern and Hamburg. After passing the bar and working as a research assistant at the University of Lucerne, she worked as a research assistant to Prof. Dr. Martino Mona at the Institute for Criminal Law and Criminology at the University of Bern.
Interview with Prof. Dr. Sibylle Hofer For more than one hundred years, the Swiss Civil Code has been determining the legal relationships between private individuals in comprehensive fashion. The code regulates anything from questions about the beginning and end of life, to intricacies of family relationships, and questions of succession and property law. In Switzerland, the Civil Code was written by Eugen Huber, one of Switzerland's best-known jurists. How did this uniquely uniform and encompassing Swiss Civil Code come about and how did Eugen Huber shape it through his expertise? We talked about this with Prof. Dr. Sibylle Hofer in Rechtsfolge 9. Prof. Dr. Sibylle Hofer is a full professor of legal history and private law at the University of Bern and heads the Institute for Legal History here. Prof. Hofer received her doctorate from the University of Hanover and habilitated at the Goethe University Frankfurt am Main. Her research focuses include the foundations of modern private law, in particular the Swiss Civil Code, as well as Bernese legal history. Prof. Hofer has published her book "Eugen Huber -Vordenker des Schweizer Zivilrechts" in May 2023.
Violence at sporting events - especially football matches - is no longer a rarity in Switzerland. Despite this surge, these events pose major challenges for visitors, clubs, security personnel, and public authorities in general: Why do such riots occur? How can they be prevented? What means can be used to contain violence at football matches, preventively and in repressive manner? And what role does the law play in this? Dr. Alain Brechbühl and Tim Willmann from the interdisciplinary research centre "Violence at Sporting Events" at the University of Bern are dealing intensively with these questions. Dr. Alain Brechbühl studied sports science and history at the University of Bern and wrote his dissertation on the topic of "Escalation versus non-escalation of fan violence in football". Since 2017, he has been project manager of the Violence at Sporting Events Research Unit. Tim Willmann is an assistant professor at the Institute for Criminal Law and Criminology at the University of Bern. He is studying law and is working on the legal aspects of violence at football matches as part of the research unit.
What can and should just punishment look like? What is the differences between punishment and coercive preventive measures such as security measures? We talked about this and other questions with Prof. Mona in Rechtsfolge 7. Martino Mona is Professor of Criminal Law and Philosophy of Law and heads the Institute of Criminal Law and Criminology at the University of Bern.
With the advent of digitalisation, health data has become one of the central currencies of our time: Different actors from politics, business, the pharmaceutical industry and research have an interest in using our health data as widely and efficiently as possible. This allows them to measure, analyse, predict and in some cases even manipulate our behaviour. From the electronic patient file to the creation of a Swiss Health Data Space - How can and should the law deal with health data? In Rechtsfolge 6, we sat together with Prof. Dr. iur. Franziska Sprecher to discuss these and other issues related to health data. Franziska Sprecher is an associate professor of constitutional and administrative law with a special focus on health law at the Institute of Public Law at the University of Bern. Since the beginning of 2020, she has been operating as the director of the Centre for Health Law and Management in Health Care (MiG) at the University of Bern.
What incentives do we have to regulate cryptocurrencies? What risks does climate change pose to the global financial marketplace and what do we mean by sustainable investment? Cryptocurrencies and climate change create new challenges for financial market law. In Legal Episode 5, we spoke with Prof. Dr. Susan Emmenegger about the current and future difficulties in financial market law as well as possible regulatory approaches. Prof. Dr. Susan Emmenegger is Full Professor for Private and Banking Law, Director of the Institute of Banking Law and Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Law at the University of Bern. She is also Co-Director of the Civil Law Seminar and Adjunct Professor at Cornell Law School. She was formerly Co-Chair of the Takeover Board and has been a member of the Board of Directors of the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority (FINMA) since 2021.
What challenges does digitalization pose for the law? What could Alexa or Siri do in a court of law and to what extent does digital decision-making aid the law? What consequences emerge from wrong digital decisions and what does it mean to say that a digital legal system is a market? In this podcast, we discuss these and other exciting questions together with Prof. Dr. Florian Eichel, Prof. Dr. Christian Matt and MLaw RA Daniel Pfäffli. Our guests are members of the interdisciplinary research unit "Law and Digitalization" at the University of Bern and have been dedicated to interdisciplinary work around the opportunities and challenges of digitalization in law for several years. Prof. Florian Eichel has been a professor for debt collection and bankruptcy law, private international law, and Swiss, foreign, and international civil procedure law since 2018. He is also co-director of the Institute for Private International Law and Procedural Law at the University of Bern. Prof. Christian Matt is professor and co-director of the Institute of Information Systems at the University of Bern. Daniel Pfäffli (MLaw) is a lawyer and research assistant at the Institute for Private International Law and Procedural Law.
The Vincenz case On April 13, 2022, the District Court of the Canton of Zurich delivered its verdict in the so-called "Vincenz case" - the proceeding touted as a "monster trial" against ex-Raiffeisenbank boss Pierin Vincenz and his business colleague Beat Stocker. The court found the defendants guilty of multiple counts of embezzlement, unfaithful management of a business, commercial fraud, and multiple counts of falsification of documents relating to expense claims. In this podcast, we take a closer look at the corporate law aspects underlying this case, in conversation with Professor Peter V. Kunz: Does the fact that the Raiffeisen bank is organised as a cooperative have a bearing on this case? How do responsibilities under company law differ from those under criminal law? What socio-cultural significance does a sentencing in a theatre hall have? And does Raiffeisen benefit from a state-financed trial? Peter V. Kunz is a full professor of business law and comparative law at the Faculty of Law of the University of Bern and heads the Institute for International and National Business Law (IWR) as its managing director. Prof. Kunz's research and teaching activities focus on commercial law, with an emphasis on corporate and stock corporation law, as well as financial market and banking law. Prof. Kunz has authored over 160 legal publications, including a 1200-page book on commercial law.
Freedom and Solidarity - in this podcast, we talked to Prof. Markus Müller about freedom, duties and solidarity - in times of crisis and outside. Markus Müller is Professor of Constitutional and Administrative Law and Public Procedural Law at the University of Bern. He is the author of numerous publications and, together with Pierre Tschannen, edits the series "Kleine Schriften zum Recht". The series highlights legal concepts, peculiarities, and aspects from an interdisciplinary perspective. Publications by Markus Müller in the series include "Psychology in Public Procedure", "Proportionality - Thoughts on a Rubik's Cube", "Religion in the Rule of Law - From Neutrality to Tolerance" and "Administrative Law - Peculiarity and Origin".
Rechtsfolge 1 Part I 50 Years of Women's Suffrage in Switzerland - Interview with Prof. Dr. Judith Wyttenbach In 2021, Switzerland celebrates 50 years of women's suffrage and voting rights. In the first episode of our podcast, we talk to Prof. Dr. Judith Wyttenbach about the legal framework and hurdles as women's voting rights were introduced. Prof. Dr. Judith Wyttenbach is a professor of constitutional and international law at the University of Bern. This year, Judith Wyttenbach, together with Prof. em. Dr. Brigitte Studer, historian at the University of Bern, published a comprehensive study on the introduction of women's voting rights on behalf of the FRI (Swiss Institute for Feminist Legal Studies and Gender Law).
Rechtsfolge 1 Part II 50 Years of Women's Suffrage in Switzerland - Interview with Prof. Dr. Judith Wyttenbach In 2021, Switzerland celebrates 50 years of women's suffrage and voting rights. In the first episode of our podcast, we talk to Prof. Dr. Judith Wyttenbach about the legal framework and hurdles as women's voting rights were introduced. Prof. Dr. Judith Wyttenbach is a professor of constitutional and international law at the University of Bern. This year, Judith Wyttenbach, together with Prof. em. Dr. Brigitte Studer, historian at the University of Bern, published a comprehensive study on the introduction of women's voting rights on behalf of the FRI (Swiss Institute for Feminist Legal Studies and Gender Law).