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19 December 2005

New Legal Studies Journal by Heidelberg Law Students: Unique in German-Speaking Europe

Publication founded and run independently by Heidelberg law students — Editors-in-chief Nicolas Nohlen and Thomas Straub — Articles by 28 students from all over Germany in the six issues published so far — Students take on an active role in legal research

The basic idea behind the Studentische Zeitschrift für Rechtswissenschaft Heidelberg (StudZR) (Heidelberg Student Law Studies Journal) is quickly outlined. This academic publication, founded and run independently by Heidelberg law students, is designed to provide a forum for the best of Germany's budding lawyers and to encourage these young authors' legal abilities and talents. The student editorial board is supported by an academic advisory committee made up of law professors and lecturers.

"In the six issues published so far (2004 and 2005), 28 students from all over Germany have published articles with us," say editors-in-chief Nicolas Nohlen and Thomas Straub. This means that the journal is a genuine student effort through and through, not only on the editorial side but also in terms of its contributors, which makes it a unique academic publishing venture in German-speaking Europe.

At an early stage the StudZR was able to enlist the cooperation of a renowned publisher, C. F. Müller of Heidelberg, a company that ensures the professional production and dissemination of the journal all over Germany. Another thing the editors are good at is finding major law firms to sponsor the journal and thus place its future on a sound financial footing. The journal recently won the "Prize of the Friends of Heidelberg University" award, which indicates that the venture is regarded with benevolence at the institutional level. The award also encourages the editors to remain unswerving in their honorary allegiance to the undertaking, alongside their ongoing commitments as students.

While this account will suffice as a brief outline of the idea behind StudZR and its history, Nohlen insists that the ambitions behind the whole project, which he initiated together with seven other fellow-students, are rather more wide-ranging: "It's time we stopped regarding the students as mere consumers or recipients of knowledge imparted to them by their professors. The best students have to be given an opportunity to participate actively in legal research." The fact that this view is shared by the members of the teaching body is amply borne out by the commitment displayed by professors and lecturers in the advisory committee of StudZR. A number of professors have also taken a hand in supervising student publications for the journal.

Please address any inquiries to:
Nicolas Nohlen
Studentische Zeitschrift für Rechtswissenschaft Heidelberg (StudZR)
Department of Law
University of Heidelberg
Friedrich-Ebert-Anlage 6-10
D-69117 Heidelberg
Phone: 0179/2410152

Dr. Michael Schwarz
Press Officer of the University of Heidelberg
phone: 06221/542310, fax: 54317

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