Here it is October and here I am composing a few thoughts and a bit of a preview for the final issue of the 2018 volume of the International Journal of Legal Information (IJLI): issue 46.3. Wasn't it just February and I was hurrying to complete my comments for issue 46.1? Since nobody can slow the passage of time, we should absolutely use the time we do have as wisely as possible. And what is a better way to use one's time than to absorb the excellent information between the covers of this issue of the IJLI?
The four articles in this issue range fairly widely from an examination of international policies used to help promote cyber security, to the effects of the forthcoming Brexit on an important aspect of the British economy, to how common law influences Brazilian law – a Civil Law jurisdiction, to a research guide for web-based resources for investment law and alternative dispute resolution. Clearly, the breadth of coverage shows that this is anything but a thematic issue. We cover a lot of ground! As in every issue, we also include our popular segments, Book Reviews, edited by Thomas Mills, and the International Calendar, edited by Amy Flick.
Our first article is by Hala Bou Alwan, who has authored a very important piece on cyber security – part of a growing body of work in an area that affects so many of us. Her article, Policy Development and Frameworks for Cyber Security in Corporates and Law Firms examines the traits of a good cyber security policy in private companies, specifically law firms. Her article also looks at the reasons cyber security has failed in certain major cases, and suggests methods of improving cyber security in a more proactive way. Alwan employs legal analysis, comparative research, corporate surveys, and actual case studies to make her case, examining fault lines in current laws on cyber security and the impact they have on the efficient execution of policies. She singles out the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and the United States of America as examples. Alwan concludes with recommending a set of policy guidelines for those considering updating or expanding their readiness and institutional posture toward cyber security. These form a compliance framework which Alwan urges all private companies and law firms to consider adopting in order to ensure that the risks of future breaches in cyber security are properly addressed.
The second article is a very interesting piece by Ryan Esparza, En Vogue: The Risks of Brexit to the European Fashion Industry. Mr. Esparza shows the risks inherent to England's fashion industry, currently worth billions annually, through Brexit. The author makes strong recommendations to those negotiating England's withdrawal from the European Union to keep copyright and trademark protections in mind to avoid catastrophic damage to this important sector of the British economy. It's a thoughtful, well-written piece that will interest anyone following the political drama of Brexit – or those with an interest in the fashion industry and how its role in the larger economy could be impacted by Brexit.
It is something of an open secret that a number of civil law jurisdictions sometimes borrow aspects of the common law (and vice versa). They do this in varying degrees, to be sure, but they absolutely do it. In our third article, we have written proof that this is happening – in Brazil. Lucas Gomes has written a brief piece, The Influences of Common Law on the Brazilian New Code of Civil Procedure, that offers a glimpse of Brazil's legal history – some quite recent – revealing the unmistakable traces of the common law.
The final article in this issue comes from an author who has published with us before, Caroline Osborne. In fact, her previous article, Programming to Promote Information Literacy in the Era of Fake News was published in the issue immediately preceding this one. Osborne's latest piece, International Investment Law and Alternative Dispute Resolution: A Guide to Web Based Resources, is an updated and expanded version of a similar guide she created several years ago. It is a very practical how-to resource for those working and conducting research in this important area of the international law. Not quite a bibliography, and not quite a pathfinder, Osborne provides a curated list of the most important electronic material on the Web for those who are looking for resources on international investment law and its intersection with alternative dispute resolution. You can “take the information in this guide to the bank,” as it has been created from a former Wall Street practitioner who worked in this area.
As you can see, this issue is wide-ranging in subject matter, but every piece it contains is good reading and contains very worthwhile content. I hope you enjoy this issue, and as always, if you would like to author an article or a book review yourself for the IJLI, I strongly encourage you to do so. I will be more than happy to work with you to share your thoughts with the IJLI readership!