Leuphana team reaches European semi-final

Experience report MLMC

The high-ran­king le­gal com­pe­ti­ti­on of Man­fred Lachs Moot Court on Space Law is now an in­te­gral part of the Ba­che­lor's Law pro­gram of Leu­pha­na. This year we, Hen­ri Beek­mann, Ron­ja Chris­ti­an­sen and Jan­nis Wes­sel, re­pre­sen­ted our uni­ver­si­ty from 21.05. un­til 24.05. in­ter­na­tio­nal­ly in Lis­bon at this com­pe­ti­ti­on.

Over the past 8 months, we have been gi­ven the ne­cessa­ry ex­per­ti­se in the are­as of space-, tel­e­com­mu­ni­ca­ti­ons- and in­ter­na­tio­nal law. This year's case pri­ma­ri­ly in­vol­ves the con­flict of in­te­rests of two sta­tes on Mars, one of which is see­king to extract re­sour­ces whi­le the other is see­king to co­lo­ni­ze the pla­net. In the con­text of this con­flict, da­ma­ge has been cau­sed by di­gi­tal in­ter­ven­ti­on, so that it was ne­cessa­ry to in­no­va­te exis­ting le­gis­la­ti­on with re­gard to new tech­no­lo­gies.
Man­fred Lachs Space Law Moot Court (MLMC) is a glo­bal ju­di­ci­al com­pe­ti­ti­on who­se Eu­ro­pean rounds are hosted an­nu­al­ly by the Eu­ro­pean Cen­ter of Space Law (ECSL) and the In­ter­na­tio­nal In­sti­tu­te of Space Law (IISL). Jud­ges in­clu­de space law ex­perts and Eng­lish la­wy­ers re­pre­sen­ting the In­ter­na­tio­nal Court of Jus­ti­ce.
Af­ter two se­mes­ters pre­pa­ring and com­ple­ting the me­mo­ri­als, we tra­ve­led to Lis­bon in May to com­pe­te in court with over 20 par­ti­ci­pant teams from 16 Eu­ro­pean coun­tries. In the preli­mi­na­ries against the teams of the Uni­ver­si­ty of Rome and Lis­bon, the jud­ges were im­pres­sed by our pre­sen­ta­ti­on and the cle­ar struc­tu­re of our ar­gu­ments. Be­cau­se of this achie­ve­ment, the jury de­ci­ded that the Leu­pha­na Team, as one of the 4 best Eu­ro­pean teams, should pro­ceed to the semi-fi­nals. Thus, we were pri­vi­le­ged to once again pre­sent our plea­dings in the ve­nerable court­room of the Por­tu­gue­se Bar As­so­cia­ti­on (see pho­to), in the pre­sence of all the par­ti­ci­pa­ting teams and re­now­ned sci­en­tists of the field.
The­re we had to be nar­row­ly de­fea­ted in a duel against the team from Bul­ga­ria. The fi­nals were la­ter won by two stu­dents from Belarus who will re­pre­sent Eu­ro­pe in the world rounds in Bre­men in Oc­to­ber.
Fol­lo­wing the com­pe­ti­ti­on, we and the other Eu­ro­pean teams were able to dis­co­ver the be­au­ti­ful city of Lis­bon and en­joy the rest of the time in per­fect wea­ther.
By par­ti­ci­pa­ting in Man­fred Lachs Moot Court, we now have nu­merous op­por­tu­nities bey­ond our com­pe­ti­ti­on to pur­sue our in­te­rest in the field of space law. In the sum­mer, ECSL, to­ge­ther with re­now­ned space law scho­lars in Hel­sin­ki, is of­fe­ring a 2-week cour­se about Space Law and Po­li­cy, whe­re we have seats re­ser­ved that will be free of char­ge. In ad­di­ti­on, we will have the op­por­tu­ni­ty to work at the In­ter­na­tio­nal As­tro­nau­ti­cal Con­gress in Bre­men in the pre­sence of well-known en­tre­pre­neurs such as Jeff Be­zos (Ama­zon and Blue Ori­gin) and Elon Musk (Tes­la and SpaceX).

We would like to ex­press our sin­ce­re thanks to our coach Vin­cent Sef­fin­ga from Ams­ter­dam, who pre­pa­red us for the com­pe­ti­ti­on in nu­merous Sky­pe con­fe­ren­ces as well as du­ring our time in Lis­bon. In ad­di­ti­on, spe­cial thanks go to Prof. Dr. med. Les­ley Jane Smith, who has been ad­vo­ca­ting Leu­pha­na Uni­ver­si­ty's par­ti­ci­pa­ti­on in the MLMC for ye­ars, and has lar­ge­ly cont­ri­bu­ted to our suc­cess in do­ing so. Thanks again Bern­hard Schmidt-Tedd, who took long ways to sha­re his pro­found ex­per­ti­se with us. In ad­di­ti­on, we would like to thank our uni­ver­si­ty for ta­king over our tra­vel ex­pen­ses.
We are hap­py about the va­luable ex­pe­ri­en­ces and in this way we would like to en­cou­ra­ge all in­te­rested stu­dents to also de­ci­de to par­ti­ci­pa­te in this com­pe­ti­ti­on. With our ac­qui­red know­ledge, we are hap­py to as­sist in the next case.

Hen­ri Beek­mann, Ron­ja Chris­ti­an­sen and Jan­nis Wes­sel