Prague conference: 13-14 October 2016


Reimagining the EU: The Contemporary Value(s) of the EU

The EU today is founded on a core set of values that has its origins in the Second World War. The Treaty of Rome 1957, signed in the aftermath of the War, placed at the zenith of its preamble the principle, „determined to lay the foundations of an ever-closer union among the peoples of Europe“ reflecting the view that the peoples of Europe shared a common set of values and that conflict would be averted if these were promoted together. However, the Treaty of Rome presented only a plan of economic integration, believing that strong economic union should come first as a solution to war. In a decade due to fundamental importance of common values of EU nations human rights gained the recognition as general principles of law. The European Union upholds this; particularly in the political, cultural and security fields and some of the central principles of the EU – the human person, freedom, democracy, equality and the rule of law – maintain this today. In time common values were made the “soul” of European integration.
However, a number of recent events have brought these common values into light, not least, Brexit and the decision by the majority of the United Kingdom to leave the EU. Events such as this raise a range of questions as to the interpretation of what values are common to the nations and (or) how they should be applied in different EU policies and reflected in different legislative tools, such as foreign policy, home affairs, trade, to keep the ever closer unity of the Union, and indeed, whether it remains relevant for the EU to aspire towards a common set of values.
This has been the general raison d’être of this project – “Europe After World War II: Multidimensional Effects of Integration as a Guarantee for State and Human Security” (WISE) – to examine integration through a set of prisms including a conference in Vilnius in December 2016, a high school video competition and visit to Auschwitz and Birkenau in April 2016 and a Human Rights Summer School in July 2016.

Conference proceedings. Prague Conference. Reimagining the EU. The Contemporary Value(s) of the EU

Live Webcast day 1

Live Webcast day 2


One of the final events of the project will be a conference in Prague, the Czech Republic, on 13 and 14 October 2016, the aim of which will be to interpret and look at the use of key policy principles, freedom, democracy, equality and the rule of law in a range of different practical spheres (please see below), particularly with a view to considering their conduciveness to a society that is tolerant and sustainable. Questions will include – the continuing relevance of these values, whether they remain distinctively European, how to use them in policymaking and pluralism.

Venue: Charles University in Prague, the Czech Republic
Duration: 1,5 days conference.
Language: English (no translation provided).

regina-valutyte-150x150Rethinking value(s) of EU restrictive measures (sanctions).

Prof. Dr. Regina Valutytė

Prof. dr. Regina Valutyte is an associated professor at the Institute of International and EU law at the Faculty of law, having a special scientific interest in the balance between the security interests of states and human rights, as well as legal remedies for infringements of EU law. She is heading Security Laboratory and coordinating International Nordplus law network. She has been involved as a human rights expert in a number of EU funded national and international research projects, has been leading and co-managing various educational human rights initiatives, such as International Human Rights Summer School or Transparency International Summer School on Integrity, and served as a visiting professor teaching human rights at numerous universities in France, Portugal, Spain, Germany, Poland and Bulgaria.

jan_kuklikWas There an Alternative to the Sovietization of Central Europe 1945-1949?

Prof. dr. Jan Kuklík

The present Dean of the Faculty of Law, Charles University. Graduated from the Faculty of Law in 1989 (JUDr.); awarded Doctorate in legal theory and history (1995); in 1991–92 a visiting graduate student at St. Edmund Hall, Oxford University, where he specialized in Czech and Czechoslovak legal history, with a focus on the l9th and 20th centuries. Publications on Czechoslovak legal history and foreign policy during the interwar period and WW II.

michalEurope 2.0. Rethinking the philosophical foundations of human rights in the context of European integration.

Dr. Michał Urbańczyk

Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań (Poland)

Summary. The wave of refugees who came to Europe in recent times caused one of the most serious political crises . European politicians, philosphers and citizens have to face the need to reform the European idea of the community (no matter whether we are talking about a society or a nation), especially in the context of its foundations, internal relations and relations between the majority and the various minorities and its rights and liberties.

Michał Urbańczyk, Ph. D. in Law, currently serves as lecturer/assistant professor at the Faculty of Law and Administration (Chair of Political and Legal Doctrines and Philosophy) at Adam Mickiewicz University (Poznań) where he teaches the courses of Freedom of Speech and its Limits in Law, Political and Legal Doctrines, Contemporary Political Ideologies, Current Problems of the European Union, Models of Representative Democracy. He is a member (and founding member) of Polish Society of Political Thought (PTMP), member of The Poznań Society of Friends of Sciences (PTNP). He was an expert in the project “Society for Tolerance” which aims at publicizing and enhancing efficiency of activities performed since 1999 by Open Republic, Association against Anti-Semitism and Xenophobia, i.e. combating all forms of racism, anti-Semitism, xenophobia and other attitudes offending human dignity.

Citizenship of the EU – question of identity.

Prof. Dr. Barbara Mielnik

University of Wroclaw (Poland)

Summary. Citizenship of the UE- general introduction to the EU citizen’ rights – European identity – common heritage and values – more national or European – European or European Union identity – current problems with new dimension of integration – communication and understanding.

Barbara Mielnik is a professor at the Chair of Public International an European Law, Faculty of Law, Administration and Economics of the University of Wrocław, Poland. She teaches the courses of Public International Law, Law of International Organizations, Non – State Actors of International Law, Regional Cooperation. She is a member of International Law Association – Polish branch.

img_7384-150x150Woe to the hexagon of values through which the occasion cometh!

Dr. Marine Toullier

Rouen University (France)

Assoc. prof. dr. Marine Toullier holds her Ph.D. from University Paris I Pantheon-Sorbonne since 2013. Since 2007, Director of the International Relations of the Law Faculty. Since 2005 Senior Lecturer at Rouen University, mostly on European Protection of Human Rights, European Union Litigation and European Convention on Human Rights litigation, Legal Methodology (Erasmus Mundus students), Fundamental Rights and Freedoms, Freedoms and liberties, graduate and post-graduate. Extensive teaching abroad, namely in the Consortium universities, but also in Italian universities (she is a trilingual French, English and Italian).

fulvio-150x150The Rule of Law as a Principle of the EU: A Concept in Search of its Definition

Prof. Dr. Fulvio Maria Palombino

University of Naples Federico II (Italy)

Summary. The existence of a European Rule of Law is commonly argued by legal writers, but the question remains as to whether this term of art may be clearly defined. The scope of this presentation is to answer the question, and in particular to investigate it from both a theoretical and practical angle.

Prof. Dr. Fulvio Maria Palombino currently serves as full professor of international law at the Department of law, where he teaches Public International Law and International Trade Law. He is the author of two monographs dealing with international adjudication broadly understood, and of several contributions to journals of international reputation, among them the Leiden Journal of International Law, the Heidelberg Journal of International Law and the Journal of International Criminal Justice. He is one of the founding chairpersons of the ESIL (European Society of International Law) Interest Group on International Courts and Tribunals.

simasConflicting Constitutional Values: Autonomy of EU Legal Order v. Human Rights?

Simas Grigonis

Mykolas Romeris University (Lithuania)

Summary. European Union (EU) is a values-oriented organization. The aspired values, including protection of human rights, can be found in the Article 2 of the Treaty on the European Union. However, some values can only be derived from the case-law of the Court of Justice (CJEU). The Opinion 2/13 on draft agreement concerning the accession of the EU to the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (ECHR) presented us with a clash between the two values of entirely different nature. Human rights (the apex of protection of which the EU accession to ECHR was to become), on the one side, and autonomy of the EU legal order on the other. The first one – inseparably related and interconnected with the assurance of the well-being of a separate individual human being while the second one – an expression of the CJEU’s constitutional aspirations for a coherent legal order. Whereas the EU autonomy protection motives were presented by CJEU as the main barrier for the EU to conclude the agreement on the EU accession to the ECHR, it was a sufficiently clear indication that the protection of the EU autonomy was a more significant value in that situation. In this context we can ask: are we, or are we not, seeking actual human rights protection in the EU?

Simas Grigonis is an L.L.M. of the University of Bordeaux and Mykolas Romeris University in the field of European Union law. He is currently a doctoral candidate, lecturer and a member of Security Research Laboratory at Mykolas Romeris University. His main interests include human rights, EU external relations and an interaction between different legal systems, particularly, between international law and EU law.

justina_nasutavicieneThe impact of human rights standards on the European arrest warrant – the end of “no questions asked” mechanism?

Lect. Dr. Justina Nasutavičienė

Mykolas Romeris University (Lithuania)



paresh-150x150Consensus or Relativity? The Approach of the European Union to Humanitarian Aid.

Dr. Paresh Kathrani

University of Westminster (United Kingdom)

Summary. The European Union has a number of programmes and frameworks, including the European Consensus on Humanitarian Aid, that are based on the founding values of the EU, including respect for human dignity and human rights. But, in such a diverse Union, what does ‘consensus’ actually mean in this context, especially in the 21st century? Does it represent a minimum benchmark that all EU member states affirm, provide a very loose context for dialogue, or both? The notion of ‘consensus’ will be explored.

Dr. Paresh Kathrani is a Senior Lecturer in Law and PhD Coordinator at Westminster Law School. He has extensive experience working in a law firm environment and also teaching and researching human rights law, amongst other fields. Whilst working in a prominent west London law firm, he assisted many asylum seekers with their human rights claims. He completed his PhD in refugee law and was later appointed a full time member of staff at Westminster Law School. He has participated in a number of research-led initiatives, including with the School of Advanced Studies, University of London – and is currently the UK Project Manager of an EU Tempus funded project with a consortium of Universities in Europe and North Africa looking at a human rights based approach to higher education in the Maghreb and also part of the EU WISE Project led by MRU, Lithuania. He is the Module Leader of Criminal Law at Westminster Law School.

nataliaThe EU policy towards unrecognised states.

Dr. Natalia Cwicinskaja

Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań (Poland)

Summary. The object of the presentation is to discuss the stance of the European Union towards five unrecognized states (Abkhazia, Nagorno Karabakh, Northern Cyprus, South Ossetia, Transnistria). The existence of these entities affects the security of all of Europe. They are parts of the regions where the EU has strategic interests and engages to promote security and stability, democracy, freedom, equality, the rule of law and respect of human rights. The implementation of these values is rather problematic in relation to unrecognized states. The presentation will include the evolution of the EU policy towards unrecognized states, as well as the summary of the challenges for the EU in this field.

Natalia Cwicinskaja is Ph. D in public international law from the Adam Mickiewicz University, Poznan, Poland. She is currently assistant professor at Adam Mickiewicz University, Faculty of Law and Administration, where she teaches International Public Law. Previously, she has worked at the Institute of the Eastern Studies (Adam Mickiewicz University).

Solidarity within the European Union: a necessary re-launch.

Dr. Giovanni Carlo Bruno

Institute on Innovation and Services for Development of the National Research Council (Italy)

Summary. The idea of solidarity inspired the movement that, after the Second World War, pushed for the integration within Europe. Article 2 of the Treaty on European Union explicitly refers to the principle of solidarity. On several occasions, solidarity is mentioned in the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (artt. 67, 80, 122, 194). Chapter IV of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU is entitled ‘Solidarity’.
The meaning of ‘solidarity’, and how it is interpreted and understood in the practice of the EU, will be recalled in the first part of the paper. Attention will be put in particular on the issue of ‘solidarity’ in the current management of the migration flows , from the 2015 ‘A European Agenda for Migration’ to the most recent decisions on the same topic of the Council of the European Union and proposals for reform of the Common European Asylum System.
Some critical considerations, and medium and long term perspectives, will be included at the end of the paper.

Giovanni Carlo Bruno currently is Researcher in International Law at the Institute on Innovation and Services for Development of the National Research Council of Italy (CNR-IRISS). His main scientific interests are: International and European Law of Human Rights, International Migration Law. He has published on legal periodicals and books. Invited speaker in Italian and International seminars and conferences, he has taught International Law, International Human Rights Law, International Humanitarian Law in University and training courses.
From 2012 to 2014, he was seconded to the European External Action Service as a national expert; he served as legal advisor in the EU Delegation to the Council of Europe in Strasbourg (France). From 2015, G.C. Bruno is responsible for CNR-IRISS of the cooperation with the Department of Law of the University of Naples ‘Federico II’.

iforum-14946-version1-kohout350-150x150The European Social Dialogue under Art. 154 and 155 TFEU as a Tool Designed to Foster the European Social Stability.

Dr. David Kohout

Charles University in Prague (Czech Republic)

Summary. The European social dialogue as provided for in Art. 154 and 155 TFEU is one of the instruments intended for maintaing and enhacing social and economic stability within the EU. Through various scenarios it grants significant space to the social partners (management and labour) to negotiate over their respective interest areas.
The aim of this paper is to discuss the role of the European social dialogue and its potential to contribute to the sustainable development of the European society, which has been one of the core fundaments of the whole idea of European integration. By the way of an example, the main focus will be devoted to the European social dialogue in the area of professional sport (and the Autonomous agreement regarding the minimum requirements for standard player contracts in the professional football sector as its outcome).

Dr. David Kohout holds his Ph.D. in legal history since 2013. In his doctoral thesis (“Legal-Historical Aspects of Prosecution of Nazi Criminals in the Context of the Adolf Eichmann Trial”) he put an emphasis on the comparative analysis of different national as well as international approaches towards retributive justice over Nazi criminals. Currently he is a researcher at the Interdisciplinary Centre for the Development of Lawyering Skills of the Faculty of Law, Charles University in Prague. Besides the area of the international criminal justice in its historical perspectives his research interests aim mainly at the area of Sports Law.

luciaExperiencing European Integration through Education: understanding, feeling and learning.

Lucie Skapova

Charles University in Prague (Czech Republic)