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Contractual knowledge: one hundred years of legal experimentation in global markets

Abstract : The word contract carries different weight in different contexts. Bankers and politicians, diplomats and economists, lawyers and judges all have complex understandings of what a contract is and what it means for them. In the recent sovereign debt negotiations with the Euro group and the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the newly elected radical left government of Alexis Tsipras asked their European peers to substitute for the previous “program” of structural reforms a new “contract” – a “social contract” – between the Greek government and its creditors (Quatremer 2015). The Greek leaders also inscribed their negotiation in a longer temporality than their European counterparts: arguing for a partial cancellation of the debt that Greece owed to Germany, Tsipras (2015) reminded his fellow Europeans that Germany had itself failed to compensate Greece for the costs of reconstruction after World War II (WWII) – including money directly borrowed by Germany from Greece during the war. This proposal was not at all what the European leaders expected to hear: for them, the only “contracts” in play were those of Greece's debt and related agreements with the European Union (EU) and other International Financial Institutions (IFIs) entered into as part of a stabilization program...
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Grégoire Mallard. Contractual knowledge: one hundred years of legal experimentation in global markets. Jérôme Sgard; Grégoire Mallard; Jérôme Sgard. Contractual Knowledge. One Hundred Years of Legal Experimentation in Global Markets, Cambridge University Press, pp.1 - 58, 2016, 9781107130913. ⟨hal-03459298⟩



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