Authority in Transnational Legal Theory
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Authority in Transnational Legal Theory

Theorising Across Disciplines

Edited by Roger Cotterrell and Maksymilian Del Mar

The increasing transnationalisation of regulation – and social life more generally – challenges the basic concepts of legal and political theory today. One of the key concepts being so challenged is authority. This discerning book offers a plenitude of resources and suggestions for meeting that challenge.
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Chapter 13: Expertise and authority in transnational governance

Sigrid Quack


This chapter starts from the observation that the growing density and complexity of transnational governance generates regulatory uncertainty which fosters the strategic use of expertise to develop an analytical framework for assessing the role of knowledge and expertise as a basis for authority. To understand the relationship between knowledge, expertise and authority in transnational governance two interrelated types of claim are distinguished. The first involves claims to epistemic authority by which individuals or groups attempt to convert their specific knowledge into expertise as a type of knowledge that stands out from other more commonly shared forms of the latter. The second type refers to actors’ claims to governance authority, in the sense of a privileged voice in transnational rule-making and implementation. Building on this conceptual framework, the chapter investigates how different groups of knowledgeable actors have sought to transform claims to policy-relevant expertise (epistemic authority) into claims for a privileged voice in transnational rule-making and implementation (governance authority) in the fields of transnational copyright and accounting governance.

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