Staffan Michelson has defended his thesis
The dissertation is the result of a study of private law viewed as a source of power for individuals to enhance values they favour. As an appropriate example of such values, the study has focused on current norms that have been recognized and mirrored as sustainable development goals (SDGs) in the UN Agenda 2030.
The research question asks why and under which conditions it is possible for individuals to utilize civil rights and private law to empower themselves and others, with the purpose of promoting societal change in line with norms for sustainable development and resilience (SDR norms). The research has been conducted as a multiple-case study and the overall phenomenon of focus for the investigation is the function of private law and civil rights in reflexive processes that occur in the interface between individuals and norms guiding the individuals´ actions.
Eight cases have been subject to in-depth studies, analyses, comparisons and syntheses. The cases deal with a variety of subjects within the research theme: buried toxicant waste barrels, cause lawyering for the conservation of marine resources, damage from oil pollution, corporate water supply pro bono, sustainability in the food industry, organic agriculture, urban gardening and sustainability in banking and finances. Three of those cases are characterized by an element of confrontation in court procedures, and five of them by the search for progress by consensus.
The external reviewer was Professor Hanne Petersen, University of Copenhagen, Denmark. The main supervisor and chair person of the defence was Professor emeritus Håkan Hydén from the Sociology of Law Department at Lund University.
Examination committee: Professor Örjan Edström at the Department of Law, Umeå University, Professor Bettina Lehmann Kristiansen at the Department of Law, Aarhus, Denmark and Professor emeritus Per Wickenberg at the Sociology of Law Department, Lund University.
Assistant supervisors: Karl Dahlstrand and Måns Svensson, the Sociology of Law Department, Lund University.