The European Court of Justice as Guardian of the Rule of Law and Human Rights

First-Hand Information on Economic Policy

Politically sensitive proceedings are increasingly becoming the general rule in European case law. Recent examples like the infringement procedures launched against Poland’s judicial reform and on forced retirement of Hungarian judges are proof of this. The European Court of Justice (ECJ) is increasingly assuming the role of guardian of the rule of law and is thus becoming the focus of public attention.

While the ECJ cannot force Member States to comply with the rule of law – this is up to the respective civil societies –, it is the responsibility of the ECJ to tighten the boundaries of law enforcement. Proceedings such as those seen recently are an important instrument of the European Commission for ensuring the rule of law in the Member States. In this context, the court must find a difficult balance between upholding the constitutional order as well as the identity of each Member State, and protecting the canon of values of the community of states. How can this balance between preserving the European set of values and respecting national constitutions and legislative traditions be maintained? What is the scope of the ECJ’s competencies and in which regard is it overstepping its responsibilities?

In a lecture organised as part of the MannheimTaxation Science Campus at ZEW, Professor Juliane Kokott, Advocate General at the Court of Justice of the European Union, will talk about “The European Court of Justice as Guardian of the Rule of Law and Human Rights”. Particular focus will be placed on the challenges facing the ECJ.

We would like to thank the ZEW Sponsors’ Association for Science and Practice for supporting the lecture series “First-Hand Information on Economic Policy”.

Venue

ZEW – Leibniz-Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung

People

Juliane Kokott // Court of Justice of the European Union

Directions

Institute address

ZEW – Leibniz-Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung

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L 7, 1, 68161 Mannheim

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