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Proportionality in Public Policy: The Balance between Rights and Public Interests in Decision Making

Israel Democracy Institute | 4 Pinsker st. Jerusalem

We are honored to invite you to an international conference on the topic of:

"Proportionality in Public Policy: Balancing of Rights and Interests in Decision-Making"

The conference is the culmination of a six year research project conducted at the Israel Democracy Institute, headed by Professor Mordechai Kremnitzer and funded by an ERC advance grant.

The two day conference will be devoted to the theme of the place of rights considerations in the policy making process, focusing on the different products of our research. Responding to the presentations will be legal constitutional scholars, public policy researchers and judgment and decision making experts from around the globe.

Day One

Day Two


Sunday, May 19th

9:30 | Gathering and Registration

10:00 | Greetings

10:30-12:00 | Book Panel: Proportionality in Action - an Empirical Study of the Judicial Practice in Six Apex Courts

Chair: Moshe Cohen-Eliya, College of Law and Business

Speakers: Niels Petersen, University of Munster

Liora Lazarus, Oxford University

Former Chief Justice Aharon Barak, IDC, Herzliya  

Responses: Mordechai Kremnitzer, Israel Democracy Institute

Talya Steiner, Israel Democracy Institute

Andrej Lang, University of Halle-Wittenberg & Israel Democracy Institute

12:00-13:00 | Lunch

13:00-14:30 | Experimental Panel: Empirical Analysis of the Proportionality Doctrine

Chair: Keren Weinshall, The Hebrew University

Presenters: Facts, Preferences and Doctrine: An Empirical Analysis of Proportionality Judgement

Raanan Sulitzeanu-Kenan, Israel Democracy Institute & The Hebrew University (with Mordechai Kremnitzer & Sharon Alon)

Experts' Application of the Proportionality Principle in War

Daniel Statman, University of Haifa (with Raanan Sulitzeanu Kenan, Micha Mandel, Michael Skerker & Stephen De Wijze)

Balancing versus Necessity: The Effects of Proportionality's Subtests on the Level of Rights Protection

Liat Netzer, Israel Democracy Institute (with Talya Steiner & Raanan Sulitzeanu Kenan)


Eyal Zamir, The Hebrew University

Amichai Cohen, Israel Democracy Institute & Ono Academic College

14:30-15:00 | Coffee Break

15:00-16:30 | Panel of Experts from the Field: Critical Reflections on the Day-to-Day Application of Proportionality

Moderator: Suzie Navot, College of Management Academic Studies

Participants: Former Constitutional Court Justice, Dieter Grimm

Former Chief Justice, Dorit Beinisch

Mike Blass, Former Deputy to the Israeli Attorney General

Gur Bligh, Legal Advisor to the Knesset Constitution, Law & Justice Committee

Eli Bahar, Former Legal Advisor to the Israeli Security Agency

16:30-17:00 | Coffee Break

17:00-18:00 | Key Note Speech by Professor Mattias Kumm, New York University, WZB Berlin & Humboldt University

"Rights, proportionality and courts under unfavorable circumstances: Some observations on history and judicial strategy"

Monday, May 20th

9:30 | Gathering

10:00-11:00 | Key Note Speech by Professor Paul Slovic, University of Oregon

"The Prominence Effect and Disproportionate Policy Making"

11:00-11:30 | Coffee Break

11:30-13:00 | Experimental Panel: Behavioral Effects on Decision Making involving Rights Limitations

Chair: Ilana Ritov, The Hebrew University

Presenters: Does the Civil Rights Discourse Moderate or Escalate Political Bias? Contrasting Effects in Israel and Canada

Raanan Sulitzeanu Kenan, Israel Democracy Institute & The Hebrew University (with Lior Sheffer, Talya Steiner & Shiran Barzilai)

The Effect of Sequence on Repeated Proportionality Decisions

Ori Plonsky, The Technion (with Daniel Chen, Liat Netzer, Talya Steiner & Yuval Feldman)

Decisions' Residue: Coherence Effects following the Balancing of Rights and Public Interests

Liat Netzer, Israel Democracy Institute (with Andreas Gloeckner, Raanan Sulitzeanu Kenan & Talya Steiner)


Andreas Gloeckner, University of Cologne

13:00-14:00 | Lunch

14:00-15:30 | Case Studies Panel: The Consideration of Rights within the Policy Process

Chair: Gila Stopler, College of Law and Business

PresentersThe Consideration of Rights in the Development of the Israeli Combatting Terror Act

Lila Margalit, Israel Democracy Institute

Rights and Proportionality in the Making of the Anti-Terrorism Data Base and the Data Retention Legislation

Andrej Lang, University of Halle-Wittenberg & Israel Democracy Institute


Paul Yowell, Oxford University

Richard Stacey, University of Toronto.  

15:30-16:00 | Coffee Break

16:00-17:30 | Proportionality in Public Policy – Conclusions and Future Directions: Discussion with Project Directors

Moderator: Yuval Shany, Israel Democracy Institute & The Hebrew University

Discussants: Mordechai Kremnitzer, Raanan Sulitzeanu Kenan, Yuval Feldman, Talya Steiner