The ECSL is glad to announce that the 2020 European Rounds of the Manfreds Lachs Moot Court will be held remotely on the 9th (Semi-Finals) and the 10th (Final) of June.
The 2020 European Rounds of the Manfreds Lachs Moot Court is organised by the ECSL in collaboration with the University of Vienna, in its capacity as local partner for this edition. The competition was initially set to take place in Vienna, Austria, from the 31st of March to 3rd of April, at the margins of the UN COPUOS Legal Subcommittee.
However, and as it is the case for most activities around the world, the covid-19 outbreak affected the European Oral Rounds. As we take the safety and well-being of teams, judges and other partners very seriously, the ECSL, together with the University of Vienna decided to cancel the 2020 European Oral Rounds.
Also, and despite the announced cancellation, the ECSL yet intends to preserve the mooting experience and ensure a certain level of continuity in its activities. As such, it has been decided to move-forward with an online version of the European Oral Rounds. The ECSL has been working on the selection of four (4) teams based on the highest written scores provided by a panel of space law experts as judges.
We are delighted to announce that the 4 teams have now been selected and will thus proceed to the remotely held European Semi-Finals, set to take place on the 9th of June. Please note that the affiliation of selected teams remains confidential until the Final.
The European Final will be held remotely on the 10th of June, and will be open to registered teams only.
The ECSL and the University of Vienna are still considering the option to release a video for public distribution after the competition. More information will be communicated on this matter following the competition.
Please note that a draft programme will be published shortly before the competition.
The ECSL wishes to thank the University of Vienna in its capacity as local partner for its great commitment to ensure this online alternative option through the GoToMeeting tool.
The ECSL also takes the opportunity to extend its congratulations to each of the 20 registered teams from all over Europe for their great work during the Written Rounds. We wish them all the best and we are looking forward to seeing them during the Final !
In the meantime, may you all take care.
Link to the European Space Law Moot Court page: http://www.esa.int/About_Us/ECSL_European_Centre_for_Space_Law/Manfred_Lachs_Space_Law_Moot_Court_Competition
Summary of public statements released:
UPDATE 16 March 2020 regarding COVID-19:
It has been decided by the European Regional Organisers to cancel the MLMC 2020 Oral Rounds.
• Although the European Oral Rounds are cancelled, we intend to preserve the mooting experience and to ensure a level of continuity in our activities;
• As such, the European Rounds will be – as a first step – based on the written scores sent over by judges initially solicited;
• Please note that an extension of deadline was granted to written judges to send back the scores for the memorials until the 3rd of April;
• Following the reception of the grades, the European Organiser will rank the memorials so as to determine the top four (4) memorials from number 1 (the best) to number 4;
• The four teams will be advised by the end of April that they will run for a remotely held oral competition organised among the top four teams, always provided that the regular assessment made by the RO allows so;
• Meanwhile, the RO will continue to monitor the situation and assess the technical options to decide upon the conduct of the remotely held oral competition. This is not yet ruled out, and shall be announced once the RO has decided upon this matter;
• The winning team will advance to the International Finals at the IAC in October (if applicable).
We understand that this outcome might be disappointing for many teams, however we trust everyone will understand these exceptional circumstances, as the safety and well-being of teams, judges and other partners remains our top priority.
UPDATE 11 March 2020 regarding COVID-19:
In view of the recent developments in Austria, and in Europe at large, concerning the Covid-19 virus, the government of Austria has decided that indoor events with more than 100 persons must be cancelled until the beginning of April. Even though this would not necessarily apply to the Regional Rounds of the Manfred Lachs Moot Court Competition, the University of Vienna and all other universities in Austria have decided to close the universities for classes and exams until 3 April 2020.
More information can be found here: https://www.univie.ac.at/en/about-us/further-information/coronavirus/ and here: https://www.unoosa.org/oosa/index.html
This unfortunately affects the oral rounds which should have taken place in lecture halls at the Law Faculty of the University of Vienna.
As we take the safety and wellbeing of teams, judges and other partners very seriously, the ECSL, together with the University of Vienna in its capacity as the organisers of the European Regional Rounds, after a thorough assessment of the current situation and with considerable regret thus decided to cancel the oral hearings that were to be held in Vienna from 30 March to 3 April 2020.
Several options are being explored by the organisers to enable the organisation of Regional Rounds nevertheless, including postponing the oral hearings to June (15 to 20 June 2020 could be an option, at the margins of the first week of the UNCOPUOS meeting) or running the oral hearings online.
We will inform you as soon as possible about the most feasible option and way forward.
ECSL Board and Secretariat