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ELLM: Upcoming modules

The Executive LLM programme offers a powerful combination of information and inspiration. The teaching has been superb and the calibre of the student body is excellent.

Session: 11-15 December 2023

Take-Home Exam Date: Friday 16 February 2024 – Sunday 18 February 2024

Brands and Trade Mark Law

The Brands, Marketing and Trademark Law Executive LLM module focuses on a growing part of the modern economy: the protection and enforcement of intangible brand value. This course takes a socio-legal approach to branding, exploring legislation and case law concerning registered trademarks in the UK and EU, undertaking comparative analysis of US and International trademark law and drawing insights from marketing and anthropological literature. After an introduction to the historical bases and normative premises of modern trademark law, we explore the core elements of trademark jurisprudence. We also consider the wider notion of the ‘brand’ in the modern economy and examine how the law protects this value.

Topics covered include: an introduction to national, regional and international trademark registration systems; registration requirements, including absolute grounds and relative grounds of refusal; the scope of trademark rights; branding, marketing and the ownership of brand image in the context of the interaction between consumers and corporate brands; trademark infringement; confusion and dilution; and exceptions and defences.

Lecturer: Dr Luke McDonagh

Module Code: LL4CTE

Law of Armed Conflict

This module covers the international law governing the conduct of hostilities (jus in bello, also known as the law of armed conflict or international humanitarian law)--as distinct from the law on the resort to force (jus ad bellum), which is a separate module. The module will take a critical approach to the international regulation and facilitation of armed conflict. As well as the laws governing the means and methods of war (‘Hague’ law), the ‘protected’ groups hors de combat (‘Geneva’ law), and the distinction between international and non-international armed conflict, the module will cover ‘lawfare’ more generally: the recourse to law as a means of waging war. It will examine the application of the laws of war, including occupation law, in recent conflicts, including the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria, the 'war on terror', and the Palestinian Occupied Territories. Students can expect to have a thorough grasp of the principles and regulations governing the conduct of hostilities, the context and efficacy of enforcement mechanisms, and a critical understanding of the normative and political stakes of international law in this area.

Lecturer: Professor Stephen Humphreys

Module Code: LL401E

Corporate Restructuring

This module is concerned with the principles and policies underlying the rescue of financially distressed companies and businesses. The module considers formal legal procedures available for dealing with companies and businesses in financial distress as well as informal approaches to rescue. Topics include: Chapter 11 as a Rescue Procedure. Corporate Rescue Procedures in the UK: Informal and Formal Procedures.  Recognition of Rescue Procedures: EC and International. The Theory and Philosophy of Rescue.

Lecturer: Professor Sarah Paterson

Module Code: LL442E


Session: 15-19 April 2024

Take-Home Exam Date: Friday 21 June 2024 – Sunday 23 June 2024

International Financial Law II: Contemporary forms of assets and money

This advanced program provides a comprehensive analysis of the evolving market practices and legal framework governing different forms of assets and money. Covering a broad spectrum from ‘traditional’ money and securities to the realms of virtual currencies and stablecoins, the course offers a deep dive into the law of the complex world of modern financial instruments.

Uniquely, the approach taken in this course transcends jurisdictional boundaries, adopting a functional and comparative methodology. Its global perspective ensures that the principles and legal axioms explored are universally applicable, allowing for seamless transposition into different legal systems and contexts.

The course examines the numerous design choices inherent in these contemporary financial products. By scrutinizing these options through the lens of international law, participants will gain critical insights into the legal considerations shaping the future of finance.

Ideal for professionals and academics seeking to deepen their understanding of the legal dimensions of today's financial markets, this course equips participants with the knowledge to navigate and influence the evolving landscape of financial law.

The teaching method is a combination of case study work and lectures. The course programme comprises the following 10 sessions.

  1. Commercial law as building block of finance and financial services
  2. The economic functions and legal framework for different forms of ‘money’
  3. Holding and disposition of financial instruments: substantive law
  4. Holding and disposition of financial instruments: conflict of laws
  5. Tokenised securities – traditional and modern legal approaches
  6. Legal design choices for ‘stablecoins’, tokenised ‘real-world’ assets and NFTs
  7. Smart contracts: settlement functions and legal framing
  8. Crypto-assets in insolvency
  9. International harmonisation
  10. Conflict-of-laws rules for crypto assets

Regulation: Strategies and Enforcement

The module examines key issues in regulation: when is regulatory intervention justified; what are the strengths and weaknesses of different regulatory approaches and those of alternatives to regulation; how do we make choices about the appropriate organisation, stringency and enforcement of regulation;  and how do regulatory regimes interact? The module uses examples from various regulatory domains, but its lessons apply across the board. The course offers a strong foundation for further study in specific regulation-intensive fields such as digital, environmental and financial regulation.

Topics include: What is regulation and when should we regulate? Command and control strategies and alternative approaches, including emissions trading, self-regulation and nudging. Understanding risk regulation. Enforcing Regulation. Ensuring Regulatory quality: regulatory impact analysis and alternatives. Regulatory competition. Transnational Regulation.

Lecturer: Professor Veerle Heyvaert

Module Code: LL434E

Cultural Property and Heritage Law

This module looks at cultural property and heritage law from legal, social theoretical and practice-oriented perspectives. It provides an overview of existing and emerging cultural property and heritage legislation (domestic and international). We will be looking in particular at the development of cultural property legislation in the 20th century and emerging international cultural property and heritage initiatives under the auspices of the UN and UNESCO. Topics to be covered include the origins of cultural property law, the problems in defining cultural property and heritage, current issues and cases in repatriation and restitution of cultural objects, the National Trust and other heritage protection regimes, and intangible cultural heritage. The module also addresses the creation and management of museums and heritage sites, primarily within the UK, but also including sites in North and South America, Europe and Asia. We consider how the issues that we've identified throughout the module arise in the ongoing construction, protection, and (primarily economic) uses of heritage.

Lecturer: Dr Tatiana Flessas

Module Code: LL445E


Session: 22-26 April 2024

Take-Home Exam Date: Friday 5 July 2024 – Sunday 7 July 2024

UK Corporate Law

UK corporate law is an advanced corporate law module focusing only on UK law. The module covers in-depth the core areas of UK corporate law including:

  • The conception of the UK company
  • separate legal personality and piercing the corporate veil
  • corporate actions in contract, tort and criminal law
  • the balance of power in the company between the board and the shareholder meeting
  • UK board composition regulation
  • Directors' duties and their enforcement
  • minority shareholder protection
  • and the role of company law in protecting creditors

The module will rely on in-class case studies and problem questions to explore the applicable law and its development.

Lecturer: Professor David Kershaw

Module Code: LL439E

Comparative Constitutional Law

This module examines the central issues in comparative constitutional law across a range of jurisdictions and from a variety of perspectives. The module opens with an introduction on the purpose of comparative constitutional law. The first substantive part discusses various approaches to the study of CCL as well as the migration of constitutional ideas (and related notions of constitutional borrowing, transplants etc). The second part deals with key constitutional concepts (constitution; rule of law; presidentialism, parliamentarism) which are discussed from a historical and comparative perspective. The point of these sessions is not to compare for the sake of comparing, but to equip you (the researcher) with the conceptual tools to do insightful, critical, and original comparative work of your own. The third part challenges the assumptions of liberal constitutionalism by examining constitutions in divided societies and authoritarian constitutionalism. The overall aim of the module is to develop students' understanding and use of many general theoretical explanations surrounding debates in CCL, and to develop students' critical/analytical approach to many of the questions facing judges and scholars in the next decade.

Lecturer: Professor Jo Murkens

Module Code: LL408E

Innovation, Technology and Patent Law

This module critically examines UK and European patent law from different perspectives including the economic case for incentivising innovation, industry and technological-specificity of legal doctrine, international economic and political frameworks, institutional features, and legal developments in the domestic laws of other countries as well as at regional and international levels. Case studies from comparable jurisdictions such as US, India or Latin America will be used where appropriate. The module aims to deliver a sound grounding in legal principles while exploring unprecedented challenges raised by emerging technologies through appropriate case studies.

  • The economics of innovation and patenting/ Jurisprudential rationale for patents. Legislative overview – international and domestic.
  • Priority, Novelty and Inventiveness
  • Industrial Application, disclosure and Genomic Inventions
  • The rational for subject matter exclusions (Methods of medical treatment, diagnostic methods, computer programs, business methods, mental acts, discoveries, genetically modified animals, human embryonic stem cells)
  • Claim drafting, purposive construction and the doctrine of equivalents.
  • Direct/indirect infringement – international concerns
  • The research use exception and its application to post-genomics science
  • The TRIPS Agreement and the global pharmaceutical industry
  • The problem of patent enforcement
  • Patent offices and the property parameters of patents
  • Synthetic biology
  • The patenting of Human gene therapy

Lecturer: Dr Siva Thambisetty

Module Code: LL435E


Modules details for future sessions will be added as soon as they are confirmed.