PropertyProf Blog

Editor: Stephen Clowney
Univ. of Arkansas, Fayetteville

A Member of the Law Professor Blogs Network

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Introduction

Hello All,

Steve's introduction probably says it all, though it should have been "Australasian law journals (mostly NZ really)".

My recent work has appeared (or is forthcoming) in a balance of professional and academic journals - first point of comparison: New Zealand essentially doesn't have student-edited law reviews.  There are what you might call "bar journals" (mostly for the profession) and "refereed journals" (which are refereed, generally on a blind peer-review basis).  Some journals are student-edited in the sense of citation-checking, etc, but most publication decisions are made by faculty members. 

My forthcoming academic articles are on "property rights in resource consents: some thoughts from law and economics" and a "response" article on issues with remedial schemes for leaky buildings, taking into account ideas from gridlock and the role of morale in property rights.  Professional articles have been on body corporate AGM's (governance of common interest communities, sort of), and management agreements for bodies corporate (management of common interest communities, sort of).

My interest in unit titles deserves a bit of an introduction.  These are called "strata titles" in Australia, and the nearest US comparison is probably with condominiums, but NZ law has become particularly prescriptive and is probably less flexible than US law in this area.  I hesitate to use the phrase "common interest communities" because unit titles are a particular type of title/ownership/governance - very different to say a fee simple subdivision, even though in particular instances both/neither may relate to gated communities, or private infrastructure, etc.  A recent book with an NZ connection has used the term "Multi-Owned Housing", but I don't think that is quite right either, because many of the unit titles issues relate to mixed-use developments (commercial, residential, retail, etc).

I am particularly interested in the intersection (good academic word) of unit titles with administrative law, company law, and broader ideas of property theory.

Finally, my "day job" is as a director (aka partner, but we incorporated pursuant to an NZ law change) of a mid-size law firm.  My practice covers both company/commercial and property law, as well as the management and other responsibilities of being in this role. 

Also, I am guest lecturing securities law at the University of Waikato this semester.  Interestingly (by way of comparison) NZ is seeing a complete overhaul of securities law after the GFC - but property law is essentially untouched (no greater regulation of mortgagees, foreclosure, etc).

That's enough introduction for now.  Other posts will hopefully be more substantive.

Thomas Gibbons

 

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