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Archive for February 5th, 2013

Revolving doors

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Those days, I feel strongly about conflicts of interests.

Not those that affect lawyers and economists. Almost inevitably, their prose is influenced by the business interests of their clients. We all know this. And subject to full disclosure, I see no evil in the fact that lawyers and economists publish papers in academic journals.  

No, those that affect the EU institutions. Yesterday, M-Lex reported a blatant example of “revolving door“.

V. Kreuschitz will succeed to J. Azizi as the Austrian Judge at the General Court.

In a previous life, Kreuschitz served as a Commission legal adviser on State aid and antidumping. 

It certainly makes sense to have this kind of expertise at the Court. But the cumulative effect of appointing previous Commission officials as judges, plus the very many référendaires who have spent some time in the EU administration may give rise to a pro-Commission bias at the Court. This, in turn, is not in line with the right to equality of arms in legal proceedings, as protected under Article 6 ECHR.

There would also be much to say about the conflicts of interests that plague academia. On this, I leave you with a reference to the great documentary the “Inside Job“, where Ferguson showed how the banking industry litteraly “bought” dozens of influential US scholars, to shut out any sort of academic criticism against nefarious financial practices.




Written by Nicolas Petit

5 February 2013 at 4:53 pm

Posted in Uncategorized