Technological Revolution, Democratic Recession and Climate Change: The Limits of Law in a Changing World

18 International Journal of Constitutional Law 334, 2020

47 Pages Posted: 30 Sep 2019 Last revised: 14 Aug 2020

See all articles by Luís Roberto Barroso

Luís Roberto Barroso

Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro; Harvard Kennedy School

Date Written: September 6, 2019

Abstract

Law is a universal institution that has pretensions of being ubiquitous and complete. However, in a complex, plural, and volatile world, its limits and possibilities are shaken by the speed, depth, and extent of ongoing transformations, its resulting ethical dilemmas, and the difficulties of forming consensus in the political universe. This article provides a reflection on how the law has attempted to deal with some of the main afflictions of our time, facing demands that include the needs to (i) keep the technological revolution on an ethical and humanitarian track, (ii) avoid democracy being perverted by populist and authoritarian adventures, and (iii) prevent solutions to climate change from coming when it is too late. At a time when even the near future has become unpredictable, the law cannot provide a priori solutions to multiplying problems and anxieties. When this happens, we must set clear goals for the future of humanity, basing them on the essential and perennial values that have followed us since antiquity.

Keywords: technological revolution, digital revolution, democratic recession, democratic retrogression, populism, climate change, global warming, limits of law

JEL Classification: Law and Economics

Suggested Citation

Barroso, Luis Roberto, Technological Revolution, Democratic Recession and Climate Change: The Limits of Law in a Changing World (September 6, 2019). 18 International Journal of Constitutional Law 334, 2020, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3458702

Luis Roberto Barroso (Contact Author)

Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro ( email )

Rua Sao Francisco Xavier, 524 - 7th floor
Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro 20559-900
Brazil
55 21 2587-7100 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://lrbarroso.com.br

Harvard Kennedy School ( email )

Littauer-G-11G
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Here is the Coronavirus
related research on SSRN

Paper statistics

Downloads
481
Abstract Views
1,446
rank
65,789
PlumX Metrics