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Centre for the Critical Study of European Law

The Centre for the Critical Study of European Law is proud to build on the School of Law’s rich heritage in the field of critical jurisprudence, and seeks to offer and to promote new, sometimes unexpected, perspectives on the role of European law within and beyond the United Kingdom.

The primary aim of the Centre is to encourage the evolution of a body of European law, founded in the structured application of critical legal methodologies to the law of the European Union, as well as to the broader law applying within the European area.

The TARN project

The Centre for the Critical Study of European Law is committed to engagement with insitutional and policy research.  TARN (the Academic Research Network on Agencification of EU Executive Governance) is a project funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union.  The project is led by Professor Ellen Vos of the University of Maastricht and Professor Michelle Everson, Birkbeck School of Law, with participating partner institutions (see here) and institutional stakeholders such as the European Banking Authority and the European Medicines Agency.

TARN seeks to foster academic research on European agencies and to provide vital links between researchers and EU and global policy-makers.  Further details about TARN and its activities can be found here.

Legal Transfer Within the Common Law World

On Thursday 18th February 2016, co-director of the Centre for the  Critical Study of European Law Dr Eddie Bruce-Jones co-hosted an afternoon of workshops with the Max Planck Institute for European Legal History.

Given its singular academic position as an independent research institution at the forefront of global legal history, the Max Planck Institute for European Legal History (Frankfurt, Germany) has been at the forefront of this emerging direction in scholarship.

Since October 2015, it has embarked on a new research project centred on the study of ‘Legal Transfer in the Common Law World’. Building on the Institute’s expertise in the widely established legal historical discipline within the civilian tradition, the research project’s aim in the years to come is to bring both fresh and external perspectives on Common Law transplants around the world, focusing on its overall as well as its localised manifestations.

In collaboration with the Birkbeck’s Centre for the Critical Study of European Law, Prof. Stefan Vogenauer and his department from Max Planck presented the individual research projects they will be pursuing within the next three years, stirring vibrant and lively debate and research collaboration.

Pictures from the event can be viewed here.

Law on Trial 2016: European Union at the Crossroads

  • "European Union at the Crossroads". In the year that the UK decided upon its relationship with Europe, the Centre for the Critical Study of European Law hosted a week-long debate on the current state of the European Union. Individual events considered the vexed Brexit question; the state of economic crisis within Europe; the current condition of European governance and democracy; the impact of migration; and the possible futures of the European Union.

Future Events

  • TARN lecture "Managing financial crisis in the EU" (date to be advised)

Past Events

  • 18th February 2016 Legal Transfer within the Common Law World.
  • 22nd June 2015 Book launch The European Union’s Non-Members: Independence Under Hegemony? edited by Erik O. Eriksen and John Erik Fossum.

Boards and Committees

  • The activities of the Centre for the Critical Study of European Law are overseen by its director Professor Michelle Everson and assistant director Dr Eddie Bruce-Jones, and an Advisory Board made up of members of faculty from other disciplines at Birkbeck as well as internationally renowned scholars in the field of critical European Law.