Third-Party Funding: Trends, Developments and the Future

The team of the Vici project ‘Affordable Access to Justice’ at Erasmus School of Law, Erasmus University (Rotterdam), have organised an online research seminar ‘Third Party Funding: Trends, Developments and the Future.’ This seminar will take place on 7 December 2022 at 10-13 CET via Zoom.

The seminar will include two presentations on two of the articles in the recently published special issue of Erasmus Law Review, edited by Vici members Professor Xandra Kramer (Erasmus School of Law) and Associate Professor Masood Ahmed (University of Leicester, UK) on Global Developments and Challenges in Costs and Funding of Civil Justice. Dr David Capper (Queen’s University, Belfast) and Professor Michale Legg (UNSW, Sydney) will present their respective papers on third party funding in Australia and Ireland.

This seminar will start with the launch of the new book Frontiers in Civil Justice - Privatisation, Monetisation and Digitisation (Elgar 2022); an edited collection of essays from the ERC project Building EU Civil Justice. The book studies three interrelated frontiers in civil justice from a European and national perspectives, combining theory with policy and insights from practice: the interplay between private and public justice, the digitisation of justice, and litigation funding. These current topics are viewed against the backdrop of the requirements of effective access to justice and the overall goal of establishing a sustainable civil justice system in Europe.

Event program:

Title: Third Party Funding: Trends, Developments and the Future

9.45 – 10.00: Registration / Zoom Connection

10.00 - 10.15: Xandra Kramer and Stefaan Voet (Erasmus School of Law, KU Leuven):

Welcome, Introduction and Book Launch Frontiers in Civil Justice - Privatisation, Monetisation and Digitisation

10.15 - 10.30: Masood Ahmed (University of Leicester, UK)

Introduction and background on the special issue of Erasmus Law Review Global Developments and Challenges in Costs and Funding of Civil Justice

10.30 – 10.45: Adrian Cordina (Erasmus School of Law)

Introduction on TPF in Europe and beyond

10.45 - 11.15: Michael Legg (UNSW Sydney)

The Rise and Regulation of Litigation Funding in Australian Class Actions

11.15 - 11.30: Break

11.30 – 12.00: David Capper (Queen’s University Belfast)

Litigation Funding in Ireland

12.00 - 12.15: Discussion and Conclusion of the Seminar

Speakers’ bio:

Michael Legg

Michael Legg is a Professor in the Faculty of Law & Justice at the University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia. Michael’s research interests include case management of complex civil litigation, regulatory litigation, class actions and litigation funding. He is the author of Case Management and Complex Civil Litigation (2d ed, 2022) published by Federation Press and Public and Private Enforcement of Securities Laws - The Regulator and the Class Action in Australia’s Continuous Disclosure Regime published by Hart (2022), co-author of Corporate Misconduct and White-Collar Crime in Australia (Thomson Reuters, 2022), Civil Procedure in New South Wales (Thomson Reuters, 4th ed 2020) and Australian Annotated Class Actions Legislation (LexisNexis, 2d ed 2018). Michael is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Law, a member of the Law Society of New South Wales’ Future Committee and the Law Council of Australia’s Class Actions Committee. He is admitted to practice in Australia (NSW) and the United States (New York Bar). He holds law degrees from UNSW (LLB), the University of California, Berkeley (LLM) and the University of Melbourne (PhD).

David Capper

Dr David Capper studied Law at Queen’s University Belfast and Cambridge University from 1978 to 1984. He was a practising member of the Bar of Northern Ireland from 1984 until 1989 when he was appointed to a Lectureship in Law at Queen’s. He is now Reader in Law, teaching and writing in the fields of Private Law, Civil Procedure and Remedies. He has held visiting positions at the University of Detroit Mercy and Fordham University.

Dr Capper first became interested in access to justice and the funding of civil litigation when serving as member (1995-2001) and vice-chair (1997-2001) of the Lord Chancellor’s Legal Aid Advisory Committee for Northern Ireland. He is the sole author of two books, on Mareva Injunctions and the Enforcement of judgments in Northern Ireland, respectively, as well as around 50 law review publications. Currently he is co-editor of the Northern Ireland Legal Quarterly.


EU flag ERC logo

Meet our ERC team members and advisory board

Prof. dr. Xandra Kramer

I am the project leader and professor of private law (focus on civil justice) at the Erasmus School of Law, Erasmus University Rotterdam; professor of private international law at the Faculty of Law, Economics and Governance of Utrecht University; and Deputy Judge in the District Court of Rotterdam. I am an elected member of the Netherlands Royal Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW), the Institut de Droit International (IDI) and of the European Law Institute (ELI) Council. My alma mater is Leiden University. In the law area, I am fascinated by the crossroads between procedural justice and economic efficiency, including cost and funding; the functioning of civil justice systems; justice innovation and digitisation; transnational complex litigation; and the harmonisation of European private international law and civil procedure (see also My mission is to improve access to civil justice for all, and in a tailor-made jacket. In daily life, I am inspired, intrigued, and moved by people, the beauty of nature, (non law) books, and music.

Email: | Phone: +31 (0)10 408 1628

Dr. Erlis Themeli

I am a postdoc researcher at the Erasmus School of Law, Erasmus University Rotterdam, working on the postdoc project Digitalisation of Civil Justice (eJustice). From 1 March till 1 June 2022, I will work as an assistant professor in private international law at Erasmus University. I graduated from the Faculty of Law, University of Tirana in 2006, and obtained my master’s degree in Comparative Private and International Private Law from the University of Groningen, in 2012. In March 2018, I defended my PhD thesis on the competition of civil justice systems in EU, at the Erasmus University Rotterdam. Between 2005 and 2011, I worked in the banking and litigation department of one of the largest law firms in Albania, and was head of the projects sector at the High Council of Justice in Albania. Since 2006, I have been a member of the Albanian Chamber of Advocates, and was admitted to the bar in 2007. I like to spend my free time expanding my already broad interests, from Who Were the Sea People, the iconoclastic wars in the 7th century, to the development of the 5th generation jet fighters. Email:

Dr. Jos Hoevenaars

I am a postdoc researcher at the Erasmus School of Law, Erasmus University Rotterdam, working on the subproject Self-Representation in Civil Justice. I studied Sociology at the Erasmus University in Rotterdam and obtained my master’s degree in 2011. Between 2012 and 2017, I worked as a PhD researcher and lecturer at the Institute for Sociology of Law and the Centre for Migration Law of the Radboud University Nijmegen. I successfully defended my Ph.D thesis on private party litigation before the Court of Justice of the European Union at the Radboud University Nijmegen in March 2018. Apart from my academic work, I also work as a musician, music producer, I am a keen cyclist as well as the co-founder and editor of Rotterdam-based journal ‘Het Potentieel’. Email:

Dr. Betül Kas I am a postdoc researcher at Erasmus School of Law, working on the subproject ‘Privatisation of Civil Justice’. I hold a Ph.D. degree and an LL.M. in Comparative, European and International Laws from the European University Institute (Florence), an LL.M. in Globalisation and Law and an LL.B. in European Law from the University of Maastricht. As part of my doctoral research, I worked for six-month as an intern at the Court of Justice of the European Union. I spent research visits at the Institute of European and Comparative Law (Oxford), the Centre for Socio-Legal Studies (Oxford) and the Max Planck Institute for Comparative and International Private Law (Hamburg). Prior to joining Erasmus School of Law, I worked as a postdoc researcher at the Centre for the Study of European Contract Law of the University of Amsterdam. Broadly speaking, my research concerns the areas of European law and European private law. Within these areas, I am particularly interested in law enforcement, legal remedies and judicial protection, strategic litigation, judicial co-operation and socio-legal research methods. In my free time, I enjoy reading Italian novels and learning new languages. Email:

Emma van Gelder LLM

I am a PhD candidate at the Erasmus School of Law, Erasmus University Rotterdam, working on the subproject Digitalisation of Civil Procedure (ODR). Since 1 February 2022, I started as a lecturer of Private Law at Utrecht University. I studied law at Utrecht University and obtained my master’s degree in Legal Research (July 2017, cum laude). During my Master’s I did several research projects in different interesting fields of law. I worked as a trainee at the European Court of Auditors, where I was involved in research concerning the European Court of Auditors as an accountability forum for European Enforcement Authorities. Besides academic books, I love to read novels in the sun, dance, listen to music and hang out with Georgia (see below). Email: // ‘PhD in the Spotlight’ Video

Georgia Antonopoulou LLM

I am a PhD candidate at the Erasmus School of Law, Erasmus University Rotterdam, working on the subproject Court Specialisation. Since September 2021, I am also a lecturer at Birmingham School of Law. I am a graduate of the Law School of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens (2011) with postgraduate studies in Civil Procedure and International Litigation Law, at the same University (2015). I have completed my LL.M. focusing on International Private Law and European Procedure Law at the Albert Ludwigs University of Freiburg, Germany. I was admitted to the Athens Bar in 2014, and worked as an attorney at law specialising in compulsory enforcement law, insolvency law and estate law for several law firms in Athens. In my free time, I enjoy watching Southpark again and again. Email: // ‘PhD in the Spotlight’ Video

Edine Apeldoorn

I am a Double Degree Business Administration and Law student at the Erasmus University Rotterdam. I graduated the Business Administration bachelor in ’20/’21 with honour. In ’21/’22 I’m studying French law for a semester at Université de Paris-Descartes to be able to compare the Dutch and French judiciary systems and to improve my linguistic proficiency in French. In the second semester I will continue my bachelor in Rotterdam. I support the ERC and Vici groups in their researches by facilitating the work of the researchers by for example finding and grouping jurisprudence or checking footnotes and formatting. In my spare time I love to conversate with friends as well as new people, get to know new places in the world, reading books and enjoying nature.


Wouter Hoogeveen

I was a student assistant at the Erasmus School of Law, Erasmus University Rotterdam, working on the ERC project from 1 September 2020 till 1 June 2021. In 2020, I finished my master Corporate law at the Erasmus School of Law, and after that I started my master Behavioural Economics. I used to work at the Erasmus School of Economics as a teaching assistant, but after my master Corporate law I wanted to get some experience in the field of law. I am very happy to work with this great team on this renowned project. In my free time I try to read a lot and listen to podcasts. I am a big sports fan, I love cycling and playing football and tennis. Email:

Kyra Hanemaayer MSc

From the start of the project, on 1 September 2017 till 1 September 2020, I was a student-assistant at the Erasmus School of Law, Erasmus University Rotterdam, working on the ERC project. I finished my master’s degree in International Economics at the Erasmus School of Economics in 2019 and obtained my LLM in Private Law in 2020. As of 1 September 2020, I am a PhD candidate at the Erasmus School of Economics at Erasmus University Rotterdam.

Research Fellow

Dr. Alexandre Biard

I hold master’s degrees from Sciences Po Paris (2009) and University Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (2010), and completed my Ph.D thesis on collective redress and judicial behaviour at Erasmus School of Law, Bologna University and Hamburg University in 2014. I was admitted to the Paris Bar in 2015, and worked at the European Commission (Directorate General for Health & Consumers), and in the litigation and EU regulatory departments of several law firms in Paris and Brussels. I am also a volunteer fellow in the non-profit organisation The Good Lobby fostering access to justice for civil society organisations through pro bono cooperation. From September 2017-November 2019, I was a postdoc researcher focusing on ADR in this ERC project. Since December 2019, I have been working as a Senior Advisor at BEUC in Brussels, while staying at Erasmus School of Law as an affiliated researcher to this project. My list of publications is available here. Email:

Advisory Board

Our advisory board offers expertise on national law and specific topics of our research, gives feedback on our activities, and supports in the design and implementation of empirical research where necessary.

Members of our advisory board are:

Prof. dr. Burkhard Hess

Executive Director of the Max Planck Institute Luxembourg for International, European and Regulatory Procedural Law; Professor in Civil Law, Civil Procedure, Private International Law, European Law and Public International Law (Faculty of Law, Heidelberg University). His research interests include European civil procedural law; German civil procedural law.

Prof. dr. Christopher Hodges

Professor of Justice Systems, and head of the Swiss Re/CMS Research Programme on Civil Justice Systems, Centre for Socio-Legal Studies, University of Oxford. His research interests include Civil Justice Systems (procedural and funding systems); Multi-Party Actions (class actions and representative/collective actions); EU Regulation of Products; Healthcare law; Product liability; and Consumer law.

Prof. dr. Peter Mascini

Professor in Empirical Legal Studies at the Erasmus School of Law of the Erasmus University Rotterdam at which university he is also an associate professor of sociology at the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences. His research focuses on the legitimization, implementation, and enforcement of laws and policies.

Prof. dr. Elisabetta Silvestri

Associate Professor of Italian Civil Procedure and Comparative Civil Procedure; Scientific Director of the post-graduate program for the training of mediators and ADR professionals, Department of Law, University of Pavia. Her research interests include collective redress; ADR; and the structure of EU judicial systems.

Dr. John Sorabji

Senior Judicial Institute Fellow, Faculty of Laws, University College, London; barrister; previously Principal Legal Adviser to the Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales and the Master of the Rolls. His research interests include the operation of Civil Justice Systems; procedural reform and innovation; and, the philosophy of litigation. He is, amongst other things, the assistant editor of The White Book, the leading commentary on English and Welsh civil procedure.

Prof. dr. Sebastian Spinei

Associate professor of Civil procedure, Faculty of Law, Lucian Blaga University, Sibiu. His research interests include Civil procedure, Civil enforcement, Judicial systems and Legal profession.