RTN Fundamental Rights and Private Law in the European Union
Welcome to the website of the Research and Training Network (RTN) on 'Fundamental Rights and Private Law in the European Union' at the Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna in Pisa.
***Now available the 2 Volume Set***
"Fundamental Rights and Private Law
in the European Union"
Order from Cambridge University Press.
This RTN worked from September 2002 to September 2006 in an international collaborative effort to research, define and evaluate the current status of horizontal effects of fundamental rights in private law across Europe. Nine European universities and young researchers from twelve different nations actively participated in the project.
The Fundamental Rights and Private Law research project was funded by the European Commission under the Fifth Framework Programme (contract number HPNR-CT-2002-00228). Further information on this type of funding and our project can be found on the CORDIS site.
Objective and tasks
The main objectives and tasks of the project were:
- Comparison of theories and doctrines being developed in Europe on the impact of fundamental rights or constitutional principles on private law.
- Description and analysis of private law cases in which the outcome is supported by argumentation based on fundamental rights or constitutional principles.
- Selection and analysis of legal provisions being considered by courts or scholars in the light of a fundamental right or a constitutional principle. A comparison between the results of this research in the participating states served to explain the different conclusions to which the interpretation of fundamental rights or principles and the interpretation of similar private law provisions could lead.
- Drafting a map of the current position on:
- the main fundamental rights acknowledged within the EU;
- ways and techniques being used for the implementation of these rights in diverse private law structures;
- the main actors in these processes (legislators, judges, scholars, EU institutions) with their functions and modes of operation.
- Assessment of whether or not different interpretations of the common EU fundamental principles really lead to disparity of protective standards. A factual approach was adopted, starting from cases relevant to a Member State and then determining how these cases would be solved in other States. The outcome of this research is a list of topics for which harmonisation could be possible.
- Evaluation of whether harmonisation or convergence can be achieved and identification of possible solutions.
For more information on methodology of the research and the results of the project please refer to the "Materials" section of this website. You might also want to have a look at this short power point presentation of the project.