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Visiting Researcher Zilin Hao

We are currently hosting visiting researcher Zilin Hao, PhD researcher at Wuhan University, in January-June for a six-months research stay. She is working on her PhD thesis (Exclusive jurisdiction for cross-border litigation) and got LLM and LLB in Law (China University of Political Science and Law).

She presents herself: “My research interests focus on the fields of private international law and international civil procedure. Before I came to Rotterdam, I learned a lot from the publications of Prof. Xandra Kramer. Thus, I appreciate Professor Kramer, who integrated me into her research group. During my stay, Xandra Kramer and her team gave me warm welcome and care. Most
importantly, by participating biweekly academic seminar with professional
teammates, I can consider my thesis question from the comparative perspective of
European private international law and civil procedure law in a straight way.
I cherish this rare opportunity for an academic visit and look forward to learning more in the coming months.”

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Published: June 9, 2021

The third seminar of the EU Civil Justice Seminar Series took place on Friday 4th of June 2021. The Seminar touched upon the topic of European digital constitutionalism and remedies. In the past two decades, the European Union has developed a framework of European digital constitutionalism. This framework was prompted as a reaction towards the predominance of digital private norm activities which were accelerating within the EU. Within this EU framework, there are various remedies and dispute resolution mechanisms available. These remedies are not just public remedies, but also bottom-up approaches to enforcement. For example, the Facebook Oversight Board presents a form of private adjudication. The European Commission proposal for a Digital Services Act (DSA) acknowledges the need to regulate such online platforms, for instance it requires online platforms to be transparent about why they take particular decisions.

Giovanni De Gregorio, who is a postdoc at the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies at the University of Oxford, kicked of the seminar with providing the introduction of the topic European digital constitutionalism. He explained how the remedies within the framework are shaped and why these remedies have been made available. He noted the shift which is experienced from digital liberalism to digital constitutionalism.

The second speaker, Catalina Goanta, who is an assistant professor at Maastricht University, touched upon the platform powers. She explained that platforms are offering much more functions than just content, such as commercial functions of social commerce. She gave the example of Instagram, through which people can buy shoes. Catalina stressed the importance of asking the question on how to answer to this increasing power of these platforms. In this regard, Catalina addressed the potential of the DSA.

The third speaker was Clara Iglesias Keller, who is a postdoc research fellow at the Leibniz Institute for Media research and at WBZ Berlin Social Sciences Centre. She touched upon the topic of judicial review and constitutionalism. She highlighted the complexity of drawing up regulation for the Internet and also raised concerns of how claims can be redressed, as she pointed out that some claims are not brought to court.

A vivid discussion followed raising numerous insights and food for future thought.