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Who drives the CJEU case law on data protection, why, and who cares?

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Wednesday, May 18, 2022, 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

The Department of Legal Studies cordially invites you to its monthly Brown Bag Seminar, held on May 18, 12 pm – 1 pm. 

Prof. Granger will present her paper “Who drives the CJEU case law on data protection, why, and who cares? Legal mobilization and policy change in the European Union”, co-authored with Kristina Irion (University of Amsterdam) and Sarah Stapel (University of Amsterdam). You can find the abstract below. 

The seminar will be held in hybrid format. 

To join via Zoom:  

Meeting ID: 925 1844 8777 

Passcode: 274204 


To join in person: QS D-318 



The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has a significant influence on the development and enforcement of a strong EU data protection regime. Its decisions in cases such as Google Spain, Digital Rights Ireland, Schrems I and II, or Privacy International/LaQuadrature du Net, to name only a few, have important implications for a wide range of both public and private actors, across a broad spectrum of policy fields, and even well beyond the EU borders. They are, de facto, contributing to the building of a global regulatory regime for the protection of personal data (Birhack 2008, Goddart 2018, Bennett 2018). Yet, despite the legal and policy relevance of the CJEU case law, we know relatively little about the processes that drive the judicial construction of this wide-reaching protective regulatory regime.   

Our paper takes a public policy approach to EU data protection law (Matthieu et al 2018), as it investigates the interests, motivations and strategies of those who contribute to shaping EU policies, by mobilizing EU law before national and EU courts. The overall aim is to improve our understanding of the processes that underly the formation of a unique and controversial EU data protection regime, as it results, at least partly, from CJEU decisions. The analysis is based on a review of relevant EU legislation and cases, and doctrinal works, as well as elite interviews with key personnel from NGOs and other organizations and bodies, including funding bodies, as well as individual ‘legal activists’ that are particular active in EU litigation and are regarded within the data protection community as having been particularly influential.