Edited by Henriette Sinding Aasen, Siri Gloppen, Anne-Mette Magnussen and Even Nilssen
In recent years, there has been a wide-ranging debate among social scientists and legal scholars about juridification processes and their possible consequences (Blichner and Molander 2008; Hatland and Nilssen 2009; Langford 2009; Magnussen and Banasiak 2013; Østerud et al. 2003; Stone Sweet 2000; Teubner 1986; Van Waarden and Hildebrand 2009). However, the academic literature has been quite fragmented and ideological, hallmarked by a lack of rigorous empirical analyses, not least with regard to juridification processes in welfare states. The absence of empirical and multidisciplinary approaches leaves a gap in the common understanding of the role and implications of different legal regimes and instruments at work in the field of social welfare. Social and legal scientists often seem to grasp the phenomenon of juridification in very different ways, resulting in a striking lack of professional communication. The idea and design of this book aim to add empirical analysis as well as multidisciplinary and comparative perspectives to the fragmented and largely theoretical debate on juridification. In the literature, there seems to be widespread agreement that juridification has occurred. A general trend towards more formal rules, rights, institutions and judicial power seems to be taking place both nationally and inter-/supranationally (Sunstein 1990). Authority and competence are also transferred to international institutions and the construction of corresponding legal authorities (Andenæs 2006; Askeland 2005). Legal regulation has increased in a range of areas, partly because of an increase in public legal regulation in general and partly because of an increase in formalized individual rights.