Supporting ELI Project Teams

Apart from Reporters and other members of the Project Team, who are primarily responsible for conducting ELI projects, the ELI Council also appoints a group of advisors (the Advisory Committee) for each project and will normally establish a Members Consultative Committee (MCC).

Advisory Committee

The Advisory Committee consists of a limited number of high-ranking experts, who are appointed by the ELI Council following consultation with the Reporters and the Executive Committee. Members of the Advisory Committee support the work of the Project Team, in consultation with the Reporters and the Executive Committee, and provide the Reporters with comments on work-in-progress and advice during the term of the project. It is ordinarily expected that Reporters will regularly submit drafts to the Advisory Committee. The frequency of this varies from project-to-project but can be no less than once a year.

Advisory Committee Members’ input is normally electronic. Nevertheless, physical meetings of the Advisory Committ may be held, eg on the occasion of the General Assembly, subject to finances.

In approving a project, the ELI Council must concurrently add to the Advisory Committee two or three drawn from the Council as Assessors, who will act in the capacity of peer reviewers and auditors of quality. Assessors should keep themselves informed on the project, closely monitor the quality of the work being carried out and supervise and contribute to the regular reports to the Council and Executive Committee on progress of the project at the times designated by the Council. They should also provide a separate report on the project to focus discussion on approval of the draft and the other results produced.

Members Consultative Committees

For most ELI projects, the Council will establish a Members Consultative Committees (MCC) shortly after the Reporters or project leaders and other Members of the Project Team have been appointed. The MCC will comment on the project plan and on any preliminary project results that have been submitted. Any ELI Member who is interested in actively contributing to the development of a project is invited to join its MCC, irrespective of the Member's status as a Fellow, Individual Observer or Institutional Observer. There is no limit to the number of Members who can participate, and MCC Members need not be experts in the relevant field. MCC Members come from various legal professions and specialise in different areas of law. It is exactly this diversity which enriches the debating potential of the MCC and makes its contribution so valuable.

MCC Members’ input is normally electronic. Nevertheless, physical meetings of the Advisory Committ may be held, eg on the occasion of the General Assembly, subject to finances.

Join an MCC today!

  • Contribute your expertise
  • Provide a fresh perspective

Join a Members Consultative Committee

So far the Members Consultative Committees were established for the following Projects:

  • From Transnational Principles to European Rules of Civil Procedure (joint ELI-UNIDROIT Project)
  • Empowering European Families: Towards More Party Autonomy in European Family and Succession Law
  • Draft Model Rules on Online Intermediary Platforms
  • Protection of Adults in International Situations
  • Principles for a Data Economy
  • Common Constitutional Traditions in Europe

If you are interested in joining any of the MCCs, please send an email to the ELI Secretariat. As mentioned above, MCC Members need not be experts in the relevant field.

FAQs

What is the difference between the Advisory Committee and the MCC?

The Advisory Committee consists of a limited number of high-ranking experts, who are appointed by the ELI Council after consultation with the Project Team. Strictly speaking, they need not be Members of the ELI, even though they usually will be. The MCC, on the other hand, consists of all ELI Members who would like to contribute to an ongoing ELI project or at least be kept in the loop. They must be Members, but they need not necessarily be experts in the field, and their number is not limited. It is usually, but not always, the case that members of the Advisory Committee work more closely with the Project Team than the MCC does.

 

What is the role of the MCC Chair?

Depending on how many ELI Members are interested in participating, MCCs may be very large, and it may not be easy for MCC members to always act in a coordinated way. This is why there is a chairperson who speaks on behalf of the MCC and acts as a kind of link between the Project Team, the ELI Bodies, and the MCC Members. The MCC chair will arrange the dates and locations of MCC meetings with the Project Reporters and discuss any issues with them, e.g. if the MCC feels that more materials should be submitted. Furthermore the chair will make sure that the MCC work is not being dominated in an unseemly manner by any particular interest groups.

 

How is the MCC chair appointed?

The ELI trusts that MCC members are capable of organising themselves and deciding how to appoint a chair. In the event of several competing candidates, elections would have to be held, which would have to follow generally accepted principles of democratic decision making. When an MCC is established, the Executive Committee will often select a provisional chair to coordinate these early stages. It is then up to the MCC members whether they accept this chairperson as the permanent chair or whether they would prefer to appoint someone else.

 

Are recommendations made by the MCC binding on the Project Team?

No, they are not. It is within the discretion of the Project Team whether or not they will follow a particular recommendation. This follows from the very simple fact that there may, and often will be contradicting recommendations, and that it is ultimately the Project Team who must take responsibility for what they have produced when it comes to approval by the official ELI Bodies.

Does every MCC member act as an individual, or is there a discussion and vote within the MCC, so that the MCC as a whole formulates a particular position?

Even though the establishment of MCCs is provided for in the ELI Statute, an MCC is not a formal body of the ELI, and there are no strict rules on how an MCC works. As MCC recommendations are not binding, majority votes are not of the essence, and it is normally the weight of the individual argument that counts. However, where an overwhelming majority of the MCC takes a particular view they may informally initiate a vote in order to enhance the persuasive authority of the point they wish to make.

If I am a member of the MCC, is the Project Team obliged to reply to my comments and to take my suggestions into account?

It is both a point of honour and an implicit obligation of any Reporter not to ignore any plausible and well-founded comments raised by an MCC member. Such comments may receive an immediate reply, but as there will often be an avalanche of comments, some of considerable length and many overlapping or contradicting each other, Project Teams must be granted the liberty to wait and produce more general replies to the MCC comments that have been made within a particular period.

 

How time-consuming is it for me to be a member of the MCC?

The amount of time you wish to invest in the MCC’s work is entirely up to you. Many MCC members will actively use this platform to formulate their views and try to influence the project results. Others may restrict themselves to reading materials submitted electronically by the Project Team and observing group discussions, thus following more closely the progress of the project than would be the case if they did not have access to MCC materials.

 

Do members of the MCC get reimbursed for their expenses?

No, they do not. The ELI is unfortunately not in a position to cover any travel or other expenses MCC members may incur. Reporters are urged to take this into account and to offer cost-efficient ways for MCC members to participate in the project. This implies, inter alia, that they must make an effort to use electronic communication platforms, and that no conference fee or similar fee may be charged for the participation in physical MCC meetings.