Christoph Krönke

Research Project Title: Enhancing Life through Governmental Paternalism

Postdoctoral Research and Teaching Assistant of Law

Ludwig Maximilian University Munich, Institute of Public Policy and Law

Munich; Germany

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Academic Biography

Christoph Krönke is research and teaching associate at Ludwig Maximilian University Munich, Germany, at the Institute of Public Policy and Law. He received his PhD (“Dr. jur.”) from Munich University in 2013. Dr. Krönke has published several books and articles in the field of public law, including his dissertation on “The Procedural Autonomy of the Member States of the European Union” (2012) and two text books on the law of state organization (1st ed. 2012, 2nd ed. forthcoming in 2015) and on fundamental constitutional rights (1st ed. 2012, 2nd ed. 2015). His research focuses on constitutional law, European and international law, administrative law – with a focus on public commercial law – as well as legal and political theory. Dr. Krönke graduated from Munich University in 2009 (First State Examination) and passed his Second State Examination in 2014, after practical legal training in civil, criminal and administrative law courts in Munich and in the cabinet of the President of the Court of Justice of the European Union.

Executive Summary

“[T]he only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not a sufficient warrant.” (John Stuart Mill)

In a modern state with rules on compulsory wearing of seat-belts and ski helmets, extensive restrictions of gambling and governmental warnings against certain religious organizations, Mill’s famous words sound like a dreamy whisper. Governmental attempts to enhance the lives of citizens increasingly result in paternalistic political agendas, i.e. agendas which interfere with the rights and freedoms of the persons concerned, regardless of their actual will, motivated and justified by the claim that these persons’ lives will be healthier, longer and better.

The Governmental Paternalism Project shall define the different forms of paternalistic governmental life enhancement and establish a differentiated phenomenology. On this basis, the fundamental legal grounds and key values of governmental paternalism and of governmental life enhancement in general will be developed. It is one of the core statements of the Governmental Paternalism Project that these legal foundations need to be concretized by way of interpretation and legislation and as a result of value-based assessment, accessing conceptions of a “better life” that stem from other disciplines (e.g. anthropology, sociology and religious studies) and institutions (e.g. a national ethics council, the churches and independent research institutions). Against this background, the general legal principles and limitations of enhancing life through governmental paternalism will be developed and systematized.