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European Civil Justice key events and publications in 2024

Happy New Year’s wishes from our Vici Building European Civil Justice group. This year will mark a range of important events and book publications. We will host a series of webinars that will kick-off in the Spring. We are very happy that after a slow start during the pandemic, the book Research Methods in Private International Law, co-edited by Xandra Kramer and Laura Carballo Piñeiro is scheduled for publication by Elgar in May 2024. It contains fascinating chapters on regulatory, research and teaching approaches, including by our postdoc researchers Adriani Dori and Carlota Ucin. Around the same time we expect that the book Financing Collective Actions in the Netherlands: towards a Litigation Fund will be published by Eleven International Publishing, co-authored by our researchers Xandra Kramer and Jos Hoevenaars in collaboration with Ianika Tzankova and Karlijn van Doorn.This is an updated English version of a report commissioned by the Dutch Ministry of Justice. We are also excited about compiling our Handbook on European Civil Procedure, commissioned by The Gruyter that we co-edit together with Stefaan Voet and with a stellar author team. We will also submit the manuscript for our book on Sustainable Access to Justice, following our international conference of October of last year, co-edited by our group members Xandra Kramer, Masood Ahmed, Carlota Ucin and Adriani Dori featuring interesting chapters by our fantastic speakers and our PhD researchers Adrian Cordina and Eduardo Silva de Freitas. The latter two hope to wrap up most of their PhD research this year, together with our group member Antonia Antonopoulou. We are also happy to host guest PhD researcher Zilin Hao for six months who will introduce herself shortly. Our group is open for hosting other visiting researchers and for applications of (self-funded) new PhD candidates this year, and we look forward to many other collaborations to keep broadening our horizons.

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Published: October 24, 2023

Conference Recap: “Sustaining Access to Justice in Europe: New Avenues for Costs and Funding”

We are thrilled to announce the successful completion of our much-anticipated conference, “Sustaining Access to Justice in Europe: New Avenues for Costs and Funding”, which took place on 19-20 October 2023. This two-day event brought together esteemed legal professionals, scholars, and researchers from around the world to engage in profound discussions on the critical issues surrounding litigation funding methods and their impact on various stakeholders.


Day 1 Highlights:

The conference commenced with an enlightening keynote speech by Rachael Mulheron. Her comprehensive and critical overview of litigation funding methods provided valuable insights into their implications for all actors involved in legal proceedings.

Moderated by Ianika Tzankova, Panel 1: Emerging Trends in Litigation Funding: Crowdfunding, Third-Party Funding, and Beyond delved into the advantages, challenges, and potential risks associated with these alternative funding avenues. Alan Uzelac, Alexandre Biard, Maria José Azar-Baud, and Thomas Stouten engaged in thoughtful discussions, exploring the broader implications of litigation funding from the perspectives of civil procedure, consumer organisations and arbitration.

Under the insightful moderation of María Carlota Ucín, Panel 2: Altruistic Ventures: Balancing Profitability and Social Impact – Myth or Reality? examined the delicate balance between profitability and social impact in funding public interest litigation, after an introductory video. Thomas Kohlmeier, Magdalena Tulibacka, Jelle Klaas, Katherine Mulhern, and Giuseppe Farchione participated in a dynamic living room-style discussion, shedding light on the complexities of this intersection from the viewpoint of human rights, commercial funders and (idealistic) funding platforms.

The first day concluded with Panel 3: Early Career Researchers’ Presentations, moderated by Eva Storskrubb. The panel featured enlightening presentations by David Markworth on innovative approaches to enforcing consumer claims in the German legal services market and Dani Habel’s exploration of crowdfunding in class actions.


Day 2 Highlights:

The second day commenced with Panel 4: Current and Future Trends of ADR and ODR Procedures within the Modern Civil Justice System, featuring insightful presentations by Emma Coleman, Dorcas Quek, and Emma van Gelder. Moderated by Masood Ahmed, this panel provided diverse perspectives on Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) in England and Singapore and experiences with Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) procedures in the Netherlands, highlighting the evolving landscape of dispute resolution methods and cost repercussions.

The conference reached its zenith with a compelling keynote speech by Andreas Stein. Stein provided a thoughtful analysis of the EU’s role in regulating litigation funding concerning representative actions in particular, tracing past developments and outlining future prospects following the EP Resolution.

In the closing Panel 5: Entrepreneurial Lawyering: Lawyers as Gatekeepers or Market Players?, an engaging discussion ensued under the moderation of Stefaan Voet. Anthony Sebok, Catherine Rogers, Panagiotis Perakis, and Wieger Wielinga explored the evolving role of lawyers as market players, delving into its legal, economic, and ethical implications, including the role of third-party funding in shaping this landscape.

In retrospect, our conference “Sustaining Access to Justice in Europe: New Avenues for Costs and Funding” stands as a testament to the vitality of ongoing dialogues in the field. The profound insights shared, and discussions held during these two days have undoubtedly contributed significantly to our understanding of the complex dynamics surrounding litigation funding.

We extend our heartfelt gratitude to all speakers, moderators, attendees, and organizers whose collective efforts made this conference a resounding success.