Fruitful Discussions Between ELI and the European Commission on Regulating Data Economy


On 20 September 2021 ELI President, Prof Pascal Pichonnaz, ELI First-Vice President, Lord Thomas, and ELI’s newly appointed Scientific Director, Prof Christiane Wendehorst, met members of the Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (DG CNECT) and of the Directorate-General for Justice and Consumers (DG JUST) to discuss aspects of the ALI-ELI Principles for a Data Economy project, in connection with ongoing preparations of the forthcoming Data Act.

The meeting followed the completion of the ALI-ELI Principles for a Data Economy, which has been approved by ELI’s Council and is currently before ELI’s Membership, having already been approved by American Law Institute (ALI)’s Membership in May 2021. It also follows a parallel submission by ELI of a Response to the Commission’s Public Consultation on the Data Act, which can be accessed here.

ELI’s projects are not conducted as academic projects, but aim at providing concrete solutions for European or national legislators, judges or practitioners. This aim can be achieved by ELI thanks to its broad constituency of practitioners, judges and experts from the business community, who provided guidance during the process of developing these Principles. The two Co-Reporters, Prof Christiane Wendehorst (ELI) and Prof Neil Cohen (ALI), benefitted from these collaborative inputs that made it possible to ensure that these ALI-ELI Principles for a Data Economy be of practical use.

ELI’s first Vice-President Lord Thomas, who is also Co-Chair of the project alongside Steven O Weise from the ALI, was confident that the ALI-ELI Principles will be broadly acceptable for the market and be of transnational relevance.

ELI’s President Pascal Pichonnaz stressed during the meeting the importance of direct discussions with the European Commission to enable the ELI to provide its input to the development of the law in Europe.