Newsletter n. 1 | April 2019
Dear Project Partners, dear All,
with this first newsletter, we are pleased to inaugurate the series of periodic information on the European judicial training project "FRICoRe".
In this issue you will find:
- An overview of the project aims and structure
- An account of the kick-off event held in Trento
- A presentation of the planned activity
1. PRESENTATION OF THE PROJECT
The project “Fundamental rights In Courts and Regulation” (herein “FRICoRe”) is a three-year judicial training project, funded by the Directorate General Justice and Consumers of the European Commission, started on 1st February 2019 and officially launched on the occasion of the kick-off event held in Trento on 4th and 5th March.
FRICoRe is characterized by the close continuity with the previous European project "ReJus", conducted in the field of judicial training in the two-year period 2016-2018. On the basis of the experience gained, FRICoRe hence aims at ensuring the consolidation and the further development of the methodology and the results achieved, as well as the enlargement of the network of judges and legal experts interested in exploring the impact of the CFREU and the EU law on national legal systems by means a mutual learning process.
More specifically, the new project is intended to provide judges and legal practitioners with further guidelines on the choice of procedures and remedies in enforcing fundamental rights at national level, with particular reference to the areas of consumer protection, migration and data protection, as well as to two new sectors, not analysed throughout the previous project, namely health law and non-discrimination.
The project also investigates the use of technology in judicial decision making and its compatibility with fundamental rights in particular the right to fair trial and the right to an effective judicial remedy. Focusing on the ongoing judicial dialogue among national and European Courts around these specific sectors, the objective is to understand to what extent and in what way the general EU principles and Article 47 CFREU materially influence the effective protection of fundamental rights at a national and supranational level.
The project activities, coordinated by the University of Trento, will be performed thanks to the cooperation of eight partner institutions from six different EU Member States. In particular, the partner institutions are the following:
- University of Trento (UNITN), Italy – Coordinating Partner
- Institute of Law Studies of the Polish Academy of Sciences (INP PAN), Poland
- University of Versailles (UVSQ), France
- University of Groningen (UG), the Netherlands
- Pompeu Fabra University (UPF), Spain
- University of Coimbra (UC), Portugal
- Bruno Kessler Foundation (FBK), Italy
- Italian National School of Magistracy (SSM), Italy
Nevertheless, FRICoRe aims at reaching a far wider audience, including judges and legal practitioners from EU Countries not directly involved within the project Consortium.
2. THE LAUNCH OF THE PROJECT
The new project was officially presented at the University of Trento on 4th and 5th March 2019.
In conjunction with the launch event, a seminar concerning the project key-themes took place. During the workshop the first meeting of the Steering Committee and the Advisory Board were held.
Following the description of the project structure and objectives, the seminar, by alternating roundtables with open discussions among judges and academics from several EU Member States, addressed the prospects of the judicial dialogue among European and national courts, the future of judicial training, the relation between technology and judicial activity and, lastly, the impact of Article 47 CFR and general principles upon the protection of fundamental rights at national level.
Thanks to the active participation of more than 30 attendees overall, the seminar allowed to identify aspects and pending issues to be addressed in more detail throughout FRICoRe.
As regards the operational aspects, during the first Steering Committee meeting held on 4th March, the representatives of the eight partners institutions addressed in more detail the project schedule and their respective roles aimed at its implementation.
Lastly, also the Advisory Board members brought together on the occasion of their first meeting deepened tasks and prospects of such body, established in order to provide advice and support to the Steering Committee regarding the development of training materials and the more effective forms of exchanges among European judges.
3. PROJECT ACTIVITIES
The project schedule foresees both the organization of transnational workshops and the preparation of training materials. Call for participation will be published on the project website to ensure full and diverse participation of national judges coming from EU countries.
In particular, from the beginning of the 2020 six Transnational Training Workshops will be organized in the different countries involved in FRICoRe, each one concerning the five areas covered by the project as well as a final workshop characterized by a cross-sector perspective. Each TTW will host approximately 40 participants, selected among judges, lawyers and other legal practitioners.
All specific dates and venues will be gradually communicated in our next newsletters together with more detailed information on the selection of participants. In the meantime, we are however pleased to share with you the following training schedule:
- TTW on Consumer Protection → Barcelona, Pompeu Fabra University, 3rd and 4th February 2020
- TTW on Data Protection → Warsaw, March 2020
- TTW on Non-discrimination → Groningen, June 2020
- TTW on Health and Fundamental Rights → Trento, October 2020
- TTW on Immigration and Asylum → Paris, January 2021
- TTW on Cross-sector and horizontal perspective → Coimbra, June 2021
Furthermore, three additional workshops will be specifically devoted to the training of trainers (Transnational “Training the Trainers” Workshops). Each TTTW is intended for about 30 selected participants. An E-learning pilot module will be also developed through the use of IT tools on one of the topics addressed during the TTTWs.
The “Training the Trainers” workshops will take place according to the following provisional plan:
- TTTW 1 → Scandicci (Florence), December 2020
- TTTW 2 → Barcelona, April 2021
- TTTW 3 → Groningen, October 2021
With regard to the preparation of training materials, over the course of the three project years, 5 Casebooks will be drafted, each one dedicated to one of the selected areas of law. Also, Guidelines for Judges and Guidance for Trainers will be provided as complementary and operational tools.
All training materials will be developed in conjunction with the continuous updating of the REJus/FRICoRe Case Law Database, which will be freely reachable on the project website (currently under construction).
To this end, we are currently establishing a network of national judges and legal experts engaged in the mutual development of the caselaw Database and the project Casebooks by suggesting relevant national judgments concerning the application of Article 47 CFREU, as well as the application of the general EU principles, in the areas of law covered by FRICoRe.
For the purpose of coordinating the various national teams, also including EU Countries not directly involved within the project Consortium, we are identifying National Contact Points in charge of managing each group and communicating with the Coordination Unit in Trento by suggesting judgments and updates within domestic caselaw when affected by EU principles in the reference areas.
Do not hesitate to contact us if you are interested in joining the network or even simply in reporting one or more relevant judgments addressing Article 47 CFREU in the context of merit or legitimacy proceedings. The active involvement of more and more judges across the EU is of extreme importance in the expansion and constant updating of the project Database!
We look forward to receiving suggestions and proposals to make the workshops interesting and attractive.
We thank you for your attention and remain at your disposal for more information on the FRICoRe project!
The FRICoRe Coordination Team