sorry but as Fabio said in the previous email about ontology, I
need to boring you, and the others, with some preliminary
notions of theory of law (at the end I am coming from philosophy
of law department). For your more curiosity you can find good
literature in http://plato.stanford.edu/
(Kelsen, Bobbio, Hart, Raz, Ross, etc.).
Preamble: Lesson learn in Italy in the definition of taxonomy of
One of the main discussion in Italy during NormeInRete
definition standard was how to classify the different type of
normative acts (including those document already passed like
Royal Decree) and to find a common terminology. We discussed for
two years and at the end we obtained a list of 20 different
denominations for covering all the possible normative
documentation used in Italy in any situation. We lost time,
definitely we lost generality and abstractness and the
possibility to have a fruitful dialogue with other legal system
(e.g. Europe, US, etc.).
For each country "law" and "act" means a different type of
documents and as well as for "bill".
Usually the meaning of these terms are linked to other
parameters like authority, steps in the law-making process,
juridical effect, jurisdiction, geo-spatial scope, legal
tradition. Simply called metadata.
So we decided in AKOMA to use a different approach: to use
neutral categories coming from the theory of law and not from a
list of document nomenclature, list that each country could
interpreted in different way. Example: US uses "bill" with a
particular meaning in a such particular step of the process, but
in Australia bill has a different meaning, and also in
California bill is different respect House of Representative
bill, and in UK the same, without to speak in Italy (we have
several different bills: from government, from parliament, from
people, from regions).
So let me start on the fact that we used more abstract
categories coming from the theory of law: LAW, ACT and BILL
(uppercase) belong to general theory of law definitions in this
sense and not represent "the bill" "the act" as concrete
document in a country tradition.
What is it a LAW in legal theory? it is not a document!!
1) LAW is any normative statements (also oral also in picture)
that were endorsed by a powered authority, addressed to some
subject, producing some legal effects. The authority could be
for example, and this is not an exhaustive list: legislative
body, governative agency, military committee, ministry, etc.
What is it a normative ACT ?
2) The normative statements are usually expressed, but not
limited, by textual document called NORMATIVE ACT. A normative
ACT (now called ACT as abbreviation) could be for example, and
this is not an exhaustive list: legislative act (so called law
lower-case), statute, constitution, resolution, etc. Also
resolution includes normative statements that have some validity
and some juridical effects (e.g. in jurisprudence, etc.).
LAW is a general concept of normative statements, LAW is
expressed by a NORMATIVE ACT --> briefly called ACT
So a resolution is a NORMATIVE ACT, the positive code is
definitely a NORMATIVE ACT, an act (lowe-case) is an ACT, the
non-positive law probably is not a NORMATIVE ACT, but it is
simply a DOC. I agree with you.
NORMATIVE ACT is also government act, ministry act, regulation,
directive, ordinance, communication, municipality law, region
What is it a BILL cleaned to the other parameters/metadata?
3) BILL is any preliminary document that the intention is to
become a normative act.
BILL in our nomenclature is only a category of ideal document,
neutral respect the other metadata that we can define
separately. We have the block <workflow> for defining the
procedural steps, we have <proponent> for defining the
initiative proponent, we have @refersTo for defining the correct
meaning of the document according to a local ontology.
BILL: include bill in strict sense, initiative by the people,
bill that introduces amendments to other normative act, draft
version of European directive, etc.
In other words we have a meta-level around NORMATIVE ACT and
Below we have a list of document nomenclature related to each
single legal tradition, law-making process, etc.
/ | \
LOCAL LEGAL TRADITION act
statue constitution ..... regulation.... etc.
About the terms chosen, at the end any synecdoche uses a
well-known term for evocating something different ("Use of the
term "The Internet
" to refer to the World Wide Web
Finally: I propose you to define together a
taxonomy/light-ontology/vocabulary (defined outside of the TC)
concerning the nomenclature of the normative acts used in US and
to link this taxonomy to the tag <act
refersTo="#resolution"> using refersTo. In this way you can
use your ontology, the Chile its ontology in Spanish with their
specific nomenclature, Italy as well its ontology in Italian.
What do you think about this?
Il 07/02/2013 19:51, Grant Vergottini ha scritto: