Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 3

EU Law Related Abstracts

3 Nature of the Prohibition of Discrimination on Grounds of Sexual Orientation in EU Law

Authors: Anna Pudlo


The EU law encompasses many supranational legal systems (EU law, ECHR, international public law and constitutional traditions common to the Member States) which guarantee the protection of fundamental rights, with partly overlapping scopes of applicability, various principles of interpretation of legal norms and a different hierarchy. In EU law, the prohibition of discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation originates from both the primary and secondary EU legislation. At present, the prohibition is considered to be a fundamental right in pursuance of Article 21 of the Charter, but the Court has not yet determined whether it is a right or a principle within the meaning of the Charter. Similarly, the Court has not deemed this criterion to be a general principle of EU law. The personal and materials scope of the prohibition of discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation based on Article 21 of the Charter requires each time to be specified in another legal act of the EU in accordance with Article 51 of the Charter. The effect of the prohibition of discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation understood as above will be two-fold, for the States and for the Union. On the one hand, one may refer to the legal instruments of review of EU law enforcement by a Member State laid down in the Treaties. On the other hand, EU law does not provide for the right to individual petition. Therefore, it is the duty of the domestic courts to protect the right of a person not to be discriminated on grounds of sexual orientation in line with the national procedural rules, within the limits and in accordance with the principles set out in EU law, in particular in Directive 2000/78. The development of the principle of non-discrimination in the Court’s case-law gives rise to certain doubts as to its applicability, namely whether the principle as the general principle of EU law may be granted an autonomous character, with respect to the applicability to matters not included in the personal or material scope of the Directives, although within the EU’s competence. Moreover, both the doctrine and the opinions of the Advocates-General have called for the general competence of CJEU with regard to fundamental rights which, however, might lead to a violation of the principle of separation of competence. The aim of this paper is to answer the question what is the nature of the prohibition of discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation in EU law (a general principle in EU law, or a principle or right under the Charter’s terminology). Therefore, the paper focuses on the nature of Article 21 of the Charter (a right or a principle) and the scope (personal and material) of the prohibition of discrimination based on sexual orientation in EU law as well as its effect (vertical or horizontal). The study has included the provisions of EU law together with the relevant CJEU case-law.

Keywords: EU Law, EU principles, non-discrimination in EU law, Charter of the Fundamental Rights

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2 Constitutional Identity: The Connection between National Constitutions and EU Law

Authors: Norbert Tribl


European contemporary scientific public opinion considers the concept of constitutional identity as a highlighted issue. Some scholars interpret the matter as the manifestation of a conflict of Europe. Nevertheless, constitutional identity is a bridge between the Member States and the EU rather than a river that will wash away the achievements of the integration. In accordance with the opinion of the author, the main problem of constitutional identity in Europe is the undetermined nature: the exact concept of constitutional identity has not been defined until now. However, this should be the first step to understand and use identity as a legal institution. Having regard to this undetermined nature, the legal-theoretical examination of constitutional identity is the main purpose of this study. The concept of constitutional identity appears in the Anglo-Saxon legal systems by a different approach than in the supranational system of European Integration. While the interpretation of legal institutions in conformity with the constitution is understood under it, the European concept is applied when possible conflicts arise between the legal system of the European supranational space and certain provisions of the national constitutions of the member states. The European concept of constitutional identity intends to offer input in determining the nature of the relationship between the constitutional provisions of the member states and the legal acts of the EU integration. In the EU system of multilevel constitutionalism, a long-standing central debate on integration surrounds the conflict between EU legal acts and the constitutional provisions of the member states. In spite of the fact that the Court of Justice of the European Union stated in Costa v. E.N.E.L. that the member states cannot refer to the provisions of their respective national constitutions against the integration. Based on the experience of more than 50 years since the above decision, and also in light of the Treaty of Lisbon, we now can clearly see that EU law has itself identified an obligation for the EU to protect the fundamental constitutional features of the Member States under Article 4 (2) of Treaty on European Union, by respecting the national identities of member states. In other words, the European concept intends to offer input for the determination of the nature of the relationship between the constitutional provisions of the member states and the legal acts of the EU integration.

Keywords: EU Law, european integration, constitutional identity, supranationalism

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1 Artificial Intelligence as a User of Copyrighted Work: Descriptive Study

Authors: Dominika Collett


AI applications, such as machine learning, require access to a vast amount of data in the training phase, which can often be the subject of copyright protection. During later usage, the various content with which the application works can be recorded or made available on the basis of which it produces the resulting output. The EU has recently adopted new legislation to secure machine access to protected works under the DSM Directive; but, the issue of machine use of copyright works is not clearly addressed. However, such clarity is needed regarding the increasing importance of AI and its development. Therefore, this paper provides a basic background of the technology used in the development of applications in the field of computer creativity. The second part of the paper then will focus on a legal analysis of machine use of the authors' works from the perspective of existing European and Czech legislation. The main results of the paper discuss the potential collision of existing legislation in regards to machine use of works with special focus on exceptions and limitations. The legal regulation of machine use of copyright work will impact the development of AI technology.

Keywords: Artificial Intelligence, EU Law, Copyright, infringement, legal use, Czech law, text and data mining

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