Honorary Doctorate – Professor Wolfgang Ernst

It gives me great pleasure to announce that the Senatus Academicus of the University of Edinburgh has voted to bestow upon Professor Wolfgang Ernst, Regius Professor of Civil Law, the University of Oxford, the degree of Doctor of Laws (honoris causa). The degree will be conferred at our graduation ceremony on Thursday 6 July 2017 at 10.30 am. Details here:
http://www.ed.ac.uk/student-administration/graduations/honorary/future-honorary-grads. For those who cannot attend in person, the ceremony will be broadcast online in real time. Details to follow later.

Professor Ernst is a leading and brilliant scholar of Roman law and legal history with a close association with the University of Edinburgh. His postgraduate studies at Yale have made him familiar with US and British scholarship, giving his academic work a breadth and quality that is beyond the often more dogmatic scholarship in Roman law and legal history found on the Continent. This undoubtedly contributed to his appointment to one of the most renowned chairs in Roman law in the world – the Regius Chair of Civil Law at Oxford.as successor to a line of such distinguished scholars as David Daube, Tony Honoré and Peter Birks. His approach to research has led him to go beyond typical doctrinal categories, and explore themes such as the legal history of money and the legal history of social choice (on one aspect of which he delivered the MacCormick Lectures in Edinburgh), in which he draws on his profound knowledge of Roman law and its Reception in the Middle Ages to illuminate important social and historical questions. Related to this is recently published book on decision-making in collegiate courts. But his work draws its strength from the fact it is grounded in disciplined textual understanding and analysis. He has thus written important studies of periculum (risk) (on which he wrote his doctoral dissertation) and other aspects of contracts, both Roman, historical and modern, which have demonstrated a finely nuanced and subtle understanding of the law and its development. His scholarship also reflects his important work on modern German law. In all of this, he has also emphasised the role of procedure as significant to our understanding of ancient and modern substantive law.

Please join us in the Centre for Legal History in congratulating him on this great honour.