Sometimes efforts to advance rights have the opposite results. Adverse political reactions against legal mobilization are often described as “backlash”. This is frequently observed in morally charged areas such as sexual and reproductive rights, politically charged areas such as race relations and migration, or questions of sovereignty in the case of international courts. But to study and establish backlash effects raises complicated questions both at conceptual and methodological level. How can we uncover the causal mechanisms at play and systematically measure effects?

Introduction by Thomas M. Keck (Syracuse University). Discussion chaired by Camila Gianella and featuring among other Daniel M. Brinks, Elisabeth Ivarsflaten , Leiv Marsteintredet, Malcolm Langford, and Lise Rakner.