Alessandro Somma, ‘Some Like it Soft – Soft Law and Hard Law in the Shaping of European Contract Law’

The topic of soft law is at the heart of this paper contribution. Soft law is the privileged instrument at EU level to develop rules in which solidarity is diluted by economic efficiency considerations. This is in line with the ordoliberal theory of social market economy and of private law society. For European private law, the reference to soft law concerns the formation of the so-called optional instrument and the selection of the rules which are supposed to become mandatory. The optional instrument is packaged according to a neo-corporatist scheme, destined to create an artificial environment, called upon to reproduce an artificial European civil society made of producer and consumers, and thus to suffocate social conflict. The selection of mandatory rules is inspired by the intent to use competition as an instrument of state intervention and, in particular, to transform producers into efficient multipliers and consumers into rational selectors of goods.

Somma, Alessandro, Some Like it Soft – Soft law and Hard Law in the Shaping of European Contract Law (2009). THE POLITICS OF THE DRAFT COMMON FRAME OF REFERENCE, pp. 51-68 , A. Somma, ed., Austin etc., 2009.

First posted 2012-10-15 06:15:04

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