The Working Group on Property, Citizenship, and Social Entrepreneurism (PCSE) ( is sponsored by the Syracuse University College of Law and its Program in Law and Market Economy. The Program in Law and Market Economy is an interdisciplinary program focusing on the relationship among law, markets, and culture. Within this context the Working Group on PCSE brings together experts from a variety of institutions to discuss and explore issues related to property law, governance, and globalization. The Group will provide an ongoing forum for the publication of important new works.

Sponsored by Syracuse University, College of Law

"Commons at the Intersection of Peer Production, Citizen Science, and Big Data: Galaxy Zoo" Free Download
Governing Knowledge Commons, Brett M. Frischmann, Michael J. Madison and Katherine J. Strandburg, eds., Oxford University Press, 2014
U. of Pittsburgh Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2014-35

MICHAEL J. MADISON, University of Pittsburgh - School of Law

The knowledge commons research framework is applied to a case of commons governance grounded in research in modern astronomy. The case, Galaxy Zoo, is a leading example of at least three different contemporary phenomena. In the first place Galaxy Zoo is a global citizen science project, in which volunteer non-scientists have been recruited to participate in large-scale data analysis via the Internet. In the second place Galaxy Zoo is a highly successful example of peer production, sometimes known colloquially as crowdsourcing, by which data are gathered, supplied, and/or analyzed by very large numbers of anonymous and pseudonymous contributors to an enterprise that is centrally coordinated or managed. In the third place Galaxy Zoo is a highly visible example of data-intensive science, sometimes referred to as e-science or Big Data science, by which scientific researchers develop methods to grapple with the massive volumes of digital data now available to them via modern sensing and imaging technologies. This chapter synthesizes these three perspectives on Galaxy Zoo via the knowledge commons framework.

"The Governance Function of Constitutional Property" Free Download
UC Davis Law Review, Forthcoming
William & Mary Law School Research Paper No. 09-286

LYNDA L. BUTLER, William & Mary Law School

Contemporary takings scholarship has devoted much attention to the problem of regulatory takings and has largely assumed that physical takings are resolved under a clear but simplistic per se rule. Under that rule modern courts automatically find a physical taking whenever government action causes a permanent physical invasion of property, regardless of the context or the importance of the public interest. Applying this bright line rule has proved to be difficult because it ignores the nuances of physical takings situations and the complexities of modern property arrangements. Should the physical takings concept apply to a rent control law that limits the ability of landlords to exclude tenants, to temporary but deliberate breaches of a levee to handle rising waters, to a law that forces landowners to accept an energy company’s underground drilling of shale deposits?

This article examines early and recent physical takings cases in light of modern property theory to demonstrate the greyness of many physical takings situations and to show how modern property theory could more effectively address those situations. A visual representation of the Court’s physical takings cases, developed from the results and logic of key cases, reveals the insufficiency of the Court’s analysis and suggests the need for more nuanced thinking. This more nuanced approach draws from modern property theory to examine physical takings claims not only under the traditional exclusion-based view of property but also from a governance perspective. Instead of deciding whether a government action subject to a physical takings claim is more like a permanent occupation violating the owner’s right to exclude or instead like a temporary trespass, courts should ask whether the exclusion or the governance strategy more effectively manages the private and public interests at stake. Seeing the resolution of physical takings conflicts as a choice between the exclusion and governance strategies – instead of as a choice between temporary versus permanent, direct versus indirect, continuous versus occasional – provides more explanatory power for the concept. When the dispute involves a resource subject to a complex property sharing arrangement, a resource needing more management because of overuse or changing natural conditions, a resource subject to a new use made possible through a technological advance, or an imminent public crisis, a governance approach allows fuller consideration of the complexity of the situation. The modern Court has overlooked this governance function in defining the reach of constitutional property under the Takings Clause.

"China's Copyright Protection for Audio-Visual Works: A Comparison with Europe and the U.S." Free Download
Int'l Rev. of Intellectual Property and Competition Law, Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition, 2015, Forthcoming
Loyola-LA Legal Studies Paper No. 2014-44

SEAGULL HAIYAN SONG, Loyola Law School Los Angeles

One of the most heated debates in the current Chinese Copyright Law Revision is copyright protection of films. Individual creators/authors of films (such as a film director or script writer) have criticized the current rule, which vests copyright ownership of a film with the producer of a film, as depriving them of a fair opportunity to share in the commercial success of their work. As a result, the guilds representing individual creators have been lobbying to change the current “producer-ownership? rule to “individual creator-ownership? model, or as an alternative, leaving copyright ownership of films to be decided by contract. Not surprisingly, movie studios are objecting to such a proposed change.

To build a successful movie industry, China is looking for inspiration from the Hollywood model — the US copyright protection of films. Yet because China’s copyright system is based on the Continental European model, a comparison with its origin — France and Germany, seems inevitable. This paper compares copyright protection of films in France, Germany and the U.S. with China (from its first Copyright Law in 1999, its subsequent revisions until the most recent one), in terms of film authorship, ownership and remuneration scheme. In the end, the author proposes a hybrid model for China — reserving the Continental European concept of moral rights for individual authors, while vesting ownership of a film with the producer of a film, and at the same time, introducing a more balanced remuneration scheme for individual creators in a film.

"Why Protect Possession" Free Download
Eric Descheemaeker (ed.), The Consequences of Possession, Edinburgh University Press, May 2014

YAELL EMERICH, McGill University - Faculty of Law

Using a comparative analysis - mainly looking at French civil Law and English Common Law - this paper studies the effects of possession through the example of possessory protection in Quebec law. The main objective of this paper is to consider the appropriate parameters of possessory protection in relation to its functions. It is argued that the possessory action has a larger function than the protection of ownership, given its supplementary purpose of protecting against violence. The argument consists of three parts. First, following the examination of the notion of possession and its justifications, I submit that the person with detention of property should benefit from possessory protection. Second, I argue that this action should not be subject to the conditions set for a useful possession. Indeed, doing otherwise confuses the concepts of possession and acquisitive prescription and undermines the aims of possessory protection. Finally, I submit that the domain of possessory protection should be extended to movables in order to transcend the obsolete maxim res mobilis res vilis.


About this eJournal

Sponsored by: Syracuse University, College of Law.

The eJournal of Property, Citizenship, and Social Entrepreneurism (PCSE) is an interdisciplinary journal dedicated to exploring the core principle that a just and accessible property law system is the basis for both good citizenship and successful socio-legal development. This eJournal distributes working and accepted paper abstracts primarily concerned with matters of property as they relate to the human process of exchange, the fostering of democratic institutions, the building of sustainable communities, the stewardship of the global environment and its natural resources, the promotion of citizenship, and the development of market institutions that respond to and promote a worthy social mission.

Our goal is to explore the legal infrastructure of property in broad terms: encompassing concerns for real, personal, intangible, and intellectual property, as well as looking at property related financial markets (including real estate mortgages, personal property security interests, licensing, and securitization).

Making reference to specific examples of property (in its various forms) we will address the following types of issues.

1) To what extent do property rights reduce or eliminate the need for government regulation (particularly command and control-regulation) while enhancing the environment for open market approaches to economic development and globalization? This includes consideration of the way in which property rights actually reduce transaction costs, correct for problems raised by the tragedy of the commons, and organize society in a way that fosters efficient economic development.

2) What is the role of privatization of State controlled property in the transformation process? How should privatization be approached and what distinctions need to be made between public, private, and state property? This includes discussion of necessary support infrastructure for successful privatization, and consideration of the need for government control over private companies dealing with public utilities, natural resources, and transportation systems.

3) To what extent do property rights enhance citizenship and advance democratic institutions? What role does private property play in creating political elites and the structures needed for controlled development and social transformation? How can property rights be used to make the rule of law more tangible, and to promote civic participation and inclusion? How are property rights related to citizenship issues respecting matters of race, gender, ethnicity, urban or rural location, and other factors?

4) To what extent do property rights promote entrepreneurism, including social entrepreneurism focusing on values other than mere maximization of economic wealth and efficiency? How can property rights fuel economic development while helping to reduce poverty?

5) In a world of global financial institutions such as the European Development Bank, The World Bank, and the IMF, with the power to influence indirect or quasi-law making, how are global property law systems to develop and become institutionalized? How do these institutions facilitate problems related to globalization and harmonization, and what are the socio-legal implications from such activity?


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