Past events

7 and 8 November 2019

Final conference ‘Judges in Utopia: Civil Courts as European Courts’

On 7 and 8 November 2019, the project’s final conference took place at the Volkshotel in Amsterdam. The aim of this conference was to present the project’s results to an audience of legal scholars and practitioners and to engage in a critical debate about the role of civil courts as European (constitutional) courts.

The conference concentrated on fundamental rights’ potential to serve as enabling tools for courts to open up space in deliberative processes regarding concepts of (transnational) justice in European private law. The judiciary’s role can be reconstructed in the light of three interlinked dimensions, which are not analysed statically, but dynamically through time: an institutional, a procedural and a substantive dimension. The institutional dimension pertains to the question how to situate courts in relation to other branches of government in the European multi-level legal order. The procedural dimension is pronounced in the position of courts vis-à-vis the litigating parties and how their powers and duties are influenced by European and international law. The substantive dimension concerns the question whether and to what extent fundamental rights are able to reconcile different conceptions of justice.

Invited speakers have been asked to engage with the theme of this conference and reflect on the ‘Judges in Utopia’ project from the perspective of their own research. An expert panel has been composed for the specific purpose of providing feedback on the project’s results.

12 - 13 april 2018

Training workshop for judges on effective remedies in Dutch consumer law

On 12 and 13 April 2018, a training workshop for Dutch judges was organised in Amsterdam on the topic of ‘EU fundamental rights and effective remedies in Dutch consumer law’. The workshop was organised in the framework of the project Roadmap to European effective Justice (REJus), a transnational judicial training project coordinated by Prof. Fabrizio Cafaggi and Prof. Paola Iamicelli. During the workshop a number of presentations were be given on topical issues in consumer law protection in civil courts. Furthermore, participating judges got the opportunity to exchange experiences in the discussion of specific case patterns.

28-28 September 2017

Judges in Utopia
Judicial law-making in a changing European legal order

On 28 and 29 September 2017, the workshop Judges in Utopia – Judicial Law-making in European private law took place in Amsterdam. The workshop was co-organised by Professor Chantal Mak, Laura Burgers and Anna van Duin. Its general theme was the changing role of the (national) judiciary in European private law. The aim was to reflect on this theme with judges, academics and other experts. 

20 - 21 April 2017

EU-fundamental rights and effective remedies in Dutch private law

This workshop was organized within the European project ‘Active Charter Training through Interaction of National ExperienceS (Actiones)’. In this project was examined how national judges, in dialogue with the Court of Justice of the EU, develop effective remedies for violations of fundamental rights in EU law. The overarching theme is the meaning of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights for Dutch private law, in particular consumer contract law. This includes the ‘horizontal’ effect of fundamental rights, as well as the impact of the Court of Justice’s case law on the role of the national judge in civil proceedings and the right to effective judicial protection (Article 47 of the Charter).