Participants of the workshop
Participants of the workshop

From 7 to 9 December 2018, the first workshop for IRZ alumni from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia was held in Belgrade under the motto “News on German law and the law of the region”.

The aim of the workshop was to inform German-speaking alumni from previous IRZ programmes about current developments in German law. The participants had either already attended one of the annual “IRZ Summer Schools on German Law” in Bonn and Cologne, taken courses on legal terminology at the Faculties of Law in Belgrade and Sarajevo or graduated from a supplementary course in German Law in Sarajevo. The workshop offered a good opportunity for participants to discuss legal issues in the German language. Almost twenty of the more than fifty participants also gave short speeches on the new developments in the laws of their own countries of origin. The event was also an opportunity for people to develop their own professional networks.

During the opening ceremony, Matthias Schikorski from the German Embassy gave a speech, stressing in particular that measures such as thIs, which provide an “update on German law”, enhance the sustainability of previous IRZ measures considerably.

On the opening evening, various German-speaking law professionals from Serbia, including a judge at the Constitutional Court of Serbia, Professor Dr. Milan Skulic, reported on their own references to Germany and German law, as well as on the developments in German law that they consider to be particularly important.

The first half of the second day of the conference was devoted to the latest developments in German law, with the following speakers:

  • Eva Weinbeer from the department of Public Law at the University of Regensburg: German constitutional law;
  • Presiding Regional Court Judge Dr. Ulrike Phieler-Morbach (Regional Court of Potsdam): criminal law and criminal procedural law;
  • Lawyer Dr. Karoline Mihaljevic-Schulze (Berlin): civil law.

Some intense discussions followed on from the lectures by the legal experts.

In the afternoon, three working groups were held to discuss the topics

  • “Latest developments in the law of the region”,
  • “New jurisdiction at the German Federal Constitutional Court (BVerfG)” and
  • “How to set up a law firm”.

The last working group was carried out in the local language, so that participants from the English-speaking internship programmes run by the IRZ could also get involved.

As the participants agreed, this new type of event was a great success. They praised in particular the great opportunity to participate actively in German and the exchange of experiences with colleagues from other South-East European countries.