Aims and Scope of the Project

The aim of our ongoing, multi-year international project ‘Core Concepts in Criminal Law and Criminal Justice’ is to explore, along the lines described above, the foundational principles and concepts that underpin the different domestic legal systems.

Development of the Project

The enterprise began at the University of Cambridge in July 2016. The General Editor’s aim was to form a discussion group consisting of academic colleagues from Anglo-American and German jurisdictions who would meet to discuss their joint interests and to present papers on topics in criminal law and criminal justice (including procedure, evidence and theory). This initial meeting, in which the aims of the project were discussed, was followed by a series of meetings in which papers were presented and discussed, with an aim to sharpen them for publication in a series of volumes, published by Cambridge University Press. These meetings took place in Göttingen (March 2017), Oxford (September 2017), Frankfurt am Main (April 2018), Edinburgh (September 2018), Zürich (April 2019) and Rutgers University, USA (September 2019), and, during the pandemic, online (December 2020). The latest meeting took place in Falmer, Sussex, 29-30 July 2022. The next meeting will be in Marburg on 13-14 October 2023. The project is now being co-funded by the Fritz Thyssen Foundation and the Göttingen Association for Comparative and International Criminal Law and Criminal Justice.

Given the group members’ broad range of research interests, and the fact that topics in the criminal law and justice field tend to be closely interrelated, we decided to publish volumes which cover a panoply of themes rather than being devoted to a single area of the criminal law and justice universe. Putting discussions of general legal theory, substantive law, criminal justice and procedure together also demonstrates the richness of the comparative approach and the many ways in which the authors from different countries and different spheres of criminal law interact.

Increasing Number of Participants, Future Meetings

The group is constantly evolving and expanding. It currently has over fifty participants from over thirty universities.