The preliminary reference procedure has long been envisaged as a judicial dialogue between the European Court of Justice and national courts. However, in reality the relationship between the Luxembourg court and national Supreme Administrative Courts appears to be closer to a relationship of living apart together than to a happy marriage between equal partners.
Professor Rob van Gestel from Tilburg University will give a talk about: what is behind this? Together with a colleague he has conducted a study of the existing literature, combined with a case law analysis and interviews with judges, which has learned that there are a number of important stumble blocks hindering the communication between courts on both sides. One can think of language barriers, time constraints, and a failing digital infrastructure. However, on a deeper level there also appears to be a lack of mutual trust that prevents Supreme administrative courts from using the possibilities the preliminary reference procedure provides, such as the opportunity to offer provisional answers to the Court regarding the questions that have been referred, and for the Court of Justice to share power with the Supreme Administrative Courts and treat them as genuine co-actors in the process of European law making. Their study offers three possible scenarios to move forward, which can be labelled as cooperation, coordination and collaboration. Especially in the last scenario, dialogue also entails that the Court of Justice needs to share more responsibility with supreme administrative courts and treat them more as decentralized European courts.
Location: Stockholm Univeristy, Universitetsvägen 10, C building, 8th floor, Faculty room
Coffee and sandwiches will be served to registered participants. Please register latest on February 28th.
Antonina Bakardjieva Engelbrekt and Björn Lundqvist