Das TTIP-Gericht: Keimzelle oder Stolperstein für echte Multilateralisierung des internationalen Investitionsrechts?

Am 12. November 2015 hat die Kommission ihren offiziellen Verhandlungsvorschlag für die Etablierung eines permanenten Investitionsgerichts im Rahmen des Transatlantischen Handels- und Investitionsabkommen (TTIP) vorgelegt. Der Vorschlag ist couragiert und richtungsweisend und stellt einen historischen Wendepunkt im Denken um das internationale Investitionsrecht dar. Trotz seines Leitcharakters leidet der Kommissionsvorschlag jedoch als Basis für eine grundlegende und globale Reform des internationalen Investitionsrechts an konzeptionellen Schwächen.

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The Force awakens – The Schrems case from a German perspective

Just like Star Wars, the „Solange“ saga about German constitutional order’s approach to fundamental rights protection in the context of European integration appeared as a story told and settled. But now there are rumours that in Germany Solange Episode III is in the making, with a release date around 2016. The ECJ’s Schrems decision will bring some turmoil to the Solange Episode III production in Germany.

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The Schrems Judgement: New Challenges for European and international companies

In Schrems the CJEU has declared the Safe-Harbor-Decision of the European Commission invalid whilst strengthening the EU fundamental rights. The Court has done so with astonishing clarity. Although the matter is about Facebook Ireland’s transfer of data to servers of Facebook, Inc. in the U.S., it, ironically, will not be Facebook but companies of the European “old economy” that will have to face severe consequences in the aftermath of this landmark judgement. In many cases of every day data processing in the business world, the consent of data subjects will be impossible to obtain. It is at the same time nearly impossible to prevent data to be transferred outside the EU. Hence, a vast number of data processing operations which were lawful before Schrems are now illegal.

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Could the Schrems decision trigger a regulatory „race to the top“?

By and large the possibility of challenging mass surveillance worldwide can be strengthened by two factors. Perhaps counter-intuitively, the first should be the support of the business community. The second is democracy.

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Safeguarding European Fundamental Rights or Creating a Patchwork of National Data Protection?

On Tuesday, the Grand Chamber of the Court of Justice of the European Union declared the Commission’s US Safe Harbour Decision invalid. The Court’s ruling in Case C-362/14 of the Austrian Internet activist Maximillian Schrems v the Irish Data Protection Commissioner is a milestone in the protection of European fundamental rights, but it also preserves space for different national supervisory standards and national discretion on whether data may actually be transferred. Is the ruling opening the way for a patchwork of national data protection? How does this ruling influence the TTIP negotiations?

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The Sinking of the Safe Harbor

The judgment of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in Schrems v. Data Protection Commissioner (Case C-362/14) is a landmark in EU data protection law, but one about which I have serious misgivings. While I share the Court’s concern regarding the surveillance practices of the US government (and other governments for that matter) and some of its criticisms of the EU-US Safe Harbor Arrangement, I take exception to its lack of interest in the practical effects of the judgment and the global context in which EU law must operate.

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Schrems v. Commissioner: A Biblical Parable of Judicial Power

We might celebrate the Court’s decision in Case C-362/14 as an improbable victory of good (data-privacy) over evil (consumer and intelligence data abuses). But I want to offer some words of caution about god-like judicial power.

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Data Protection in the US and the EU: the Case for Federal Solutions

Which level is better placed to provide efficient data protection – the federal or the state level? This question is topical both in the United States and in the European Union. In the US, there are concerns regarding the increased fragmentation of American data privacy law and the lack of relevant federal consolidation. In the EU, the proposed General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) supposed to replace the Directive of 1995 was met with opposition regarding the “over-centralization of powers” in the European institutions.

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Obergefell: ein Gericht, zwei Verfassungen

Die Entscheidung des US Supreme Court, dass der Zugang gleichgeschlechtlicher Paare zur Ehe ein Gebot der Verfassung ist, ist nicht nur politisch eine Sensation, sondern auch verfassungsrechtlich ein hoch interessantes Dokument. Zwei Narrative prallen in dieser Entscheidung aufeinander, zwei Rekonstruktionen der Verfassungslage. Und was man aus diesem Aufeinanderprallen lernen kann, reicht weit über die Frage der Homo-Ehe hinaus.

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Der Supreme Court, die Bilder – und die Binde der Justitia

Zu den möglichen Zugängen zum Verfassungsrecht gehören auch die Bilder als Medien des Verfassungsrechts. Zwei Supreme Court-Entscheidungen von letzter Woche nehmen Bilder sogar direkt mit in ihre Anhänge auf. Sie zeigen die Chancen, aber auch die Tücken einer Nutzung dieses Mediums als Bestandteil gerichtlicher Entscheidungsbegründungen.

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