Conform Interpretation as a Method for Balancing Autonomy and Heteronomy: Introduction


  • Joxerramon Bengoetxea Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea - Universidad del País Vasco


Conform interpretation, objective interpretation, textualism, autonomy of the judiciary, legal interpretation, supreme courts, constitutional courts


Conform interpretation is seen as a method to find compatibility between legal norms belonging to different, but coordinated systems or to find coherence within the system. In either case conform interpretation implies a shared interpretative culture and has important consequences for legal theory – including the theories of legal culture - and legal practice from a dogmatic perspective but also from a procedural and sociological perspective (sociology of the legal professions). It also has important political implications regarding autonomy and the separation of powers and the role of constitutional courts in a context of constitutional pluralism. The issue of conform interpretation is here addressed from a historical-cultural as well as philosophical-comparative perspective.


Author Biography

Joxerramon Bengoetxea, Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea - Universidad del País Vasco

Reviewing interests: legal philosophy; legal theory; legal reasoning; EU law; Legal cultures and comparative law (legal pluralism, globalisation and law); Judiciary; Labour law-employment policy, lifelong learning policy; governance; regionalism and nationalism in Europe; European Integration and Constitutional Pluralism; European Human Rights; Soft Law and policy makin; Law-making, legislative drafting; Multilingualism; Reasonable Accommodation; Anti-terrorism in EU, risk and security; Sources of law; General Legal Principles; Cohesion policy; Serives of General Public Interest; Judicial dialogues




How to Cite

Bengoetxea, J. (2012) “Conform Interpretation as a Method for Balancing Autonomy and Heteronomy: Introduction”, Oñati Socio-Legal Series, 1(9), p. 5. Available at: (Accessed: 28 June 2022).



Ensuring legitimacy: conform interpretation