799

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Blockchain and the General Data Protection Regulation

24-07-2019

In recent times, there has been much discussion in policy circles, academia and the private sector regarding the tension between blockchains and the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (‘GDPR’). Whereas, the GDPR is based on an underlying assumption that in relation to each personal data point there is at least one the data controller, blockchains make the allocation of responsibility and accountability burdensome. Further, although the GDPR is based on the assumption that data can ...

In recent times, there has been much discussion in policy circles, academia and the private sector regarding the tension between blockchains and the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (‘GDPR’). Whereas, the GDPR is based on an underlying assumption that in relation to each personal data point there is at least one the data controller, blockchains make the allocation of responsibility and accountability burdensome. Further, although the GDPR is based on the assumption that data can be modified or erased where necessary to comply with legal requirements, blockchains, however, render the unilateral modification of data purposefully onerous in order to ensure data integrity and to increase trust in the network.

External author

This study was written by Dr Michèle Finck

How the General Data Protection Regulation changes the rules for scientific research

24-07-2019

The implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) raises a series of challenges for scientific research, especially regarding research that is dependent on data. This study investigates the promises and challenges associated with the implementation of the GDPR in the scientific domain and examines the adequacy of the GDPR exceptions for scientific research in terms of safeguarding scientific freedom and technological progress.

The implementation of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) raises a series of challenges for scientific research, especially regarding research that is dependent on data. This study investigates the promises and challenges associated with the implementation of the GDPR in the scientific domain and examines the adequacy of the GDPR exceptions for scientific research in terms of safeguarding scientific freedom and technological progress.

External author

DG, EPRS; This study has been conducted by the Health Ethics and Policy Lab, ETH Zurich

Parliamentary scrutiny of the European Commission: Implementation of Treaty provisions

09-07-2019

The European Parliament's application of scrutiny prerogatives of political oversight of the European Commission increases the democratic legitimacy of the European Union, and the transparency and accountability of the European executive. The update of the 2018 study examines the European Parliament's powers of scrutiny of the European Commission in the last two legislative terms. The cases examined pertain mainly to electoral and institutional issues, motions of censure, parliamentary questions, ...

The European Parliament's application of scrutiny prerogatives of political oversight of the European Commission increases the democratic legitimacy of the European Union, and the transparency and accountability of the European executive. The update of the 2018 study examines the European Parliament's powers of scrutiny of the European Commission in the last two legislative terms. The cases examined pertain mainly to electoral and institutional issues, motions of censure, parliamentary questions, inquiry committees and special parliamentary committees and reporting, consultation and provision of information. It also touches upon scrutiny in budgetary issues, scrutiny of delegated acts, scrutiny in the legislative procedure, legal proceedings and the EU's external relations.

Impact Assessment and European Added Value work during the eighth legislative term, 2014-2019

03-07-2019

The responsibility for better law-making is shared between the European Union institutions. In recent years Parliament has developed its own instruments to guarantee proper and independent assessment and to support parliamentary committees in their work. The concept of impact assessment is applied throughout the whole policy cycle – on both an ex-ante and an ex-post basis – from the design of legislation through to its implementation, evaluation and revision. The European Parliament also advocates ...

The responsibility for better law-making is shared between the European Union institutions. In recent years Parliament has developed its own instruments to guarantee proper and independent assessment and to support parliamentary committees in their work. The concept of impact assessment is applied throughout the whole policy cycle – on both an ex-ante and an ex-post basis – from the design of legislation through to its implementation, evaluation and revision. The European Parliament also advocates a proper assessment of European added value, in terms of what savings will result from a European solution and if supplementary costs would arise in the absence of a European solution. This briefing provides a look back over five years’ experience in support of better regulation for the benefit of citizens.

Outcome of the European Council and Euro Summit, 20-21 June 2019

26-06-2019

At their most recent meeting, EU Heads of State or Government postponed decisions on nominating a set of high-level EU appointments, including the position of President of the European Commission. EU leaders will now reconvene for a special meeting of the European Council on 30 June, with the aim of reaching an agreement on a package of candidates. On climate policy, the European Council did not achieve consensus on ensuring climate neutrality by 2050 either. Conversely, it adopted the strategic ...

At their most recent meeting, EU Heads of State or Government postponed decisions on nominating a set of high-level EU appointments, including the position of President of the European Commission. EU leaders will now reconvene for a special meeting of the European Council on 30 June, with the aim of reaching an agreement on a package of candidates. On climate policy, the European Council did not achieve consensus on ensuring climate neutrality by 2050 either. Conversely, it adopted the strategic agenda for 2019-24, setting four priority areas that will guide the work of the EU institutions over the next five years. EU leaders also discussed a wide range of external relations issues, including the situation in eastern Ukraine and the Azov Sea, and reconfirmed economic sanctions on Russia.

European Council conclusions - A rolling check-list of commitments to date

14-06-2019

The role of the European Council – to 'provide the Union with the necessary impetus for its development' and to define its 'general political directions and priorities' – has evolved rapidly over the last decade. Since June 2014, the European Council Oversight Unit within the European Parliamentary Research Service (EPRS), the European Parliament's in-house research service and think tank, has been monitoring and analysing the European Council's delivery on commitments made in the conclusions of ...

The role of the European Council – to 'provide the Union with the necessary impetus for its development' and to define its 'general political directions and priorities' – has evolved rapidly over the last decade. Since June 2014, the European Council Oversight Unit within the European Parliamentary Research Service (EPRS), the European Parliament's in-house research service and think tank, has been monitoring and analysing the European Council's delivery on commitments made in the conclusions of its meetings. This overview of European Council conclusions is a new, updated and more comprehensive edition of the Rolling Check-List, which has been published regularly by the European Council Oversight Unit since 2014. It distinguishes between four types of European Council conclusions (commitments, reviews, endorsements and statements) and indicates the follow-up given to calls for action made by EU leaders. It also offers an introductory analysis of each policy area, highlighting the background to the main orientations given by the European Council, as well as the follow-up to them and the future challenges.

Revising the Taking of Evidence Regulation

27-05-2019

On 31 May 2018, the Commission proposed a proposal for a new regulation on taking of evidence in civil proceedings. It takes stock of the existing regulation (from 2001), but provides for a number of changes to remove legal uncertainty and to promote electronic communications. Parliament adopted its legislative resolution on the proposal on 13 February 2019. The main points of Parliament's position include modifying the definition of the term 'court', to mean any authority in a Member State that ...

On 31 May 2018, the Commission proposed a proposal for a new regulation on taking of evidence in civil proceedings. It takes stock of the existing regulation (from 2001), but provides for a number of changes to remove legal uncertainty and to promote electronic communications. Parliament adopted its legislative resolution on the proposal on 13 February 2019. The main points of Parliament's position include modifying the definition of the term 'court', to mean any authority in a Member State that is competent under the laws of that Member State to take evidence according to this regulation (i.e. not only judicial bodies). Parliament also considers that any decentralised information technology (IT) system for cross-border communication of evidence must be based on e-CODEX, and that the use of videoconferencing or any other appropriate distance communication technology should be subject to the consent of the person to be heard. Any electronic systems used to take evidence must also ensure that professional secrecy and legal professional privilege (lawyers' secrets) are duly protected. The discussion in Council is ongoing, thus trilogue negotiations on the proposal have not yet been able to commence.

Artificial intelligence, data protection and elections

20-05-2019

The Facebook/Cambridge Analytica case in 2018, revealing alleged misuse of personal data for political advertising, demonstrated how the underlying values of the European data protection rules are essential for democracy. The EU has recently adopted a series of additional initiatives to support free and fair elections, reflected not least in European Parliament (EP) debates and resolutions.

The Facebook/Cambridge Analytica case in 2018, revealing alleged misuse of personal data for political advertising, demonstrated how the underlying values of the European data protection rules are essential for democracy. The EU has recently adopted a series of additional initiatives to support free and fair elections, reflected not least in European Parliament (EP) debates and resolutions.

Identifying Optimal Policy Making and Legislation

15-05-2019

This Briefing forms part of a programme of research commissioned by the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee of the European Parliament (‘the IMCO Committee’). The research programme has the aim of updating the study undertaken for the IMCO Committee in 2014 on the “Contribution of the Internal Market and Consumer Protection to Growth”. The overall aim is to provide background information and advice for IMCO Committee members on the benefits of legislation established in the field ...

This Briefing forms part of a programme of research commissioned by the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee of the European Parliament (‘the IMCO Committee’). The research programme has the aim of updating the study undertaken for the IMCO Committee in 2014 on the “Contribution of the Internal Market and Consumer Protection to Growth”. The overall aim is to provide background information and advice for IMCO Committee members on the benefits of legislation established in the field of internal market and consumer protection and to reflect on priority measures and actions to be undertaken in this field. A workshop was held in Brussels on 10th July 2018, at which progress on this programme of research was presented and discussed. This Briefing focusses on tools for use in the identification of optimal policy making and their application in the area of the internal market and consumer protection. It uses the smart Single Market regulation concept – developed in earlier research for the IMCO Committee - to present the tools for optimal policy making and to assess the development of policy for the internal market and consumer protection. First, some context is provided with a discussion of the Europe 2020 targets, the “Contribution to growth” report and the Juncker Plan. Second, the smart Single Market regulation concept is introduced and finally policy developments and legislation for the internal market and consumer protection are discussed with recommendations for improvements to the policy-making process.

External author

Prof. Dr. Sion Jones

Workshop on “Strengthening Competitiveness of the Internal Market by Developing the EU Customs Union and its Governance”

15-05-2019

This report summarises the discussion that took place at the workshop on “Strengthening Competitiveness of the Internal Market by Developing the EU Customs Union and its Governance”. The Union Customs Code is a key element of the ongoing actions to modernise EU customs. With the aim of discussing the main challenges related to this topic and the recent proposal of the European Commission to postpone the deadline of 2020, the workshop was hosted by Ms Virginie Rozière, MEP. This document was prepared ...

This report summarises the discussion that took place at the workshop on “Strengthening Competitiveness of the Internal Market by Developing the EU Customs Union and its Governance”. The Union Customs Code is a key element of the ongoing actions to modernise EU customs. With the aim of discussing the main challenges related to this topic and the recent proposal of the European Commission to postpone the deadline of 2020, the workshop was hosted by Ms Virginie Rozière, MEP. This document was prepared by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection.

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