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Kaarlo Tuori

Professori Emeritus, University of Helsinki

Kaarlo Heikki Tuori was born in Helsinki in 1948 and has been Professor of Jurisprudence at Helsinki University since 2003. He has also been Director of the Centre of Excellence Foundations of European Law and Polity since 2008 and a member of the Venice Commission (European Commission for Democracy through Law) as of 1998. The Centre of Excellence was terminated at the end of 2014 and I have been retired from my chair in jurisprudence since the end of 2015.

In general jurisprudence, his main works are Critical Legal Positivism (Ashgate 2002) and Ratio and Voluntas (Ashgate 2011). In Critical Legal Positivism he develops a view of modern law, based on two distinctions: a distinction between law as a symbolic-normative phenomenon (a legal order) and law as legal practices, and a distinction within the legal order between its surface level and its sub-surface, legal cultural layers.

Ratio and Voluntas elaborates further the view of modern law articulated Critical Legal Positivism. Here he also explores the role of legal scholarship in accomplishing the tasks of ratio as well as the way the ratio’s tension with voluntas is manifested in constitutional law.

Since the mid-2000s, his research has focused on theoretical issues of European law and constitution. Within the Centre of Excellence in Research on the Foundations of European Law and Polity (2008-2013), I developed an approach termed the many constitutions of Europe (see Tuori, Kaarlo – Sankari, Suvi (eds.): The Many Constitutions of Europe. Ashgate  2010). The basic idea is to examine the European constitution as a differentiated process of constitutionalisation (see the introductory essay in Tuori – Sankari 2010).

After publishing texts on various dimensions of the European constitution (see, e.g., Tuori, Kaarlo – Tuori, Klaus: The Eurozone Crisis: A Constitutional Analysis, CUP 2014), Professor Tuori composed   a synthesis of his recent research on European constitutionalism (European Constitutionalism, CUP 2015).

He has received honorary degrees at Lund University 2001, at Copenhagen University 2006 and at Turku University 2009.