Structures of Legitimation of Private, Intermediary, and Hybrid Regulatory Regimes

Completed Project

Project of the Cluster of Excellence "Formation of Normative Orders" (Research Area 3)

Norm setting and norm enforcement not only take place within an organizational state framework. Non-state players alone, intermediate bodies or state-private forms of cooperation can also be considered as institutions of rulemaking or rule enforcement. The legitimation of such regulatory structures is currently a subject of numerous discussions in political science and jurisprudence . However, it is not only a matter of the present, as such patterns of regulation can be found in the past too (see: "Regulated self-regulation from a legal historian's perspective"). These historical manifestations were also under high pressure to legitimize. Since the establishment of sovereignty claiming statehood the question arises again and again: How can a claim to make collective binding decisions be constituted for non-state actors? The reference to traditions lost increasingly convincibility, even though it didn’t completely disappear.

During the 19th and 20th century new narratives of legitimation emerged. Though they featured different scopes of validity and levels of abstraction. A model of self-regulation, as it was offered by the theory of Adam Smith, imparted attractiveness in all societies that were on course to become a commercial society. However, specific national patterns of legitimation can be found everywhere. Finally a functional differentiated society generated specific patterns of legitimation for particular sectors.

The project’s objective is to elaborate different national and functional manifestations of the legitimation of non-state exercise of power and their comparative analysis. For this purpose this project will cooperate with the project “The Legitimation of Non-State Regulation in Interconnected Normative Orders” which examines this question (in a perspective) related to the present.


Wolf, K. D.; Collin, P.; Coni-Zimmer, M. (Eds.): Legitimization of Private and Public Regulation: Past and Present. (2017), 84 pp.
Collin, P.: The Legitimation of Self-Regulation and Co-Regulation in Corporatist Concepts of Legal Scholars in the Weimar Republic. Politics and Governance 5 (1), pp. 15 - 25 (2017)

The project began on 1 January 2015.

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