Academics and Legal Change: Birks, Savigny and the Law of Unjust Enrichment

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperChapterpeer-review


Legal academics have played and should continue to play a central role in the legal change and the legal reform. Taking the law of unjust enrichment as its litmus test, this chapter has explored the nature of the legal change with respect to the work of two forefathers of unjust enrichment: Peter Birks and Carl Friedrich von Savigny. The findings here are mixed. Both Birks and were legal revolutionaries. It was important for them to use the rhetoric of development, organic growth and historical consistency. Clearly, both scholars were devoted unifiers and allies of the systematicity notion. It does tell us something about legal change: legal academics are agents of change; the historical rhetoric mixed with the ‘unifying’ argument could much help in the advances of the revolution.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationRethinking Unjust Enrichment
Subtitle of host publicationHistory, Sociology, Doctrine, and Theory
EditorsWarren Swain, Sagi Peari
Place of PublicationUK
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Print)9780192874146
Publication statusPublished - 7 Dec 2023


Dive into the research topics of 'Academics and Legal Change: Birks, Savigny and the Law of Unjust Enrichment'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this