06 May 07 May
13:00 - 17:30
Maastricht Centre for European Law

Transnational Training Workshops on: Judicial Appointments & Judicial self-government

TRust, Independence, Impartiality and Accountability of judges and arbitrators safeguarding the rule of Law under the EU Charter (TRIIAL) Project.

The European Union’s Standard on Judicial Independence: System of Judicial appointments, Councils of the judiciary and Judicial Associations

This transnational training workshop will discuss the topic of judicial appointments in Europe in light of the most recent caselaw developed by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) and the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), and how these recent jurisprudential developments can be applied at the national level. In particular, the following issues will be addressed: institutional aspects in the system of appointment for judges (e.g. the role of the Judicial Councils, court presidents, Ministries of Justice, judges’ associations); re-assignment of judges to other cases/courts; re-shaping adjudicating panels; direct and indirect influence of the executive in the process of appointing judges, and more generally in the organisation of the justice system.

Various aspects of judicial appointments are coming up before the CJEU and ECtHR, as highlighted in the following cases: concerning judicial reform in Poland C-619/18, Commission v. Poland; C- 192/18 ; C‑811/19, C‑840/19; C‑357/19, C‑547/19 and before the ECtHR concerning the appointment to the High Court of Appeals Guðmundur Andri Ástráðsson v. Iceland App no 26374/18, on judicial removals in Baka v Hungary App No 20261/12 or assessment of judicial performance Guz v Poland App No 965/12. Judicial standards are developed as a part of the European principle of judicial independence under Articles: 2, 7, 19 (1) TEU; Arts. 258 and 267 TFEU; 47 EU Charter; 6 and 13 ECHR. And more issues have been raised by the 2020 Rule of Law Report of the European Commission. Notably, almost all EU Member States have either adopted or negotiated some form of the reform of the justice system (See: Figure 1 of 2020 Justice Scoreboard). Many of the reported reforms gave rise to doubts as to their compliance with EU law, in particular, with the standard of external independence of the judges: the system of judicial appointments and guarantees of irremovability from the office. These developments indicate the need for an updated discussion of the implementation of the CJEU and ECtHR standards on rule of law, independence and accountability in relation to judicial appointments.

Given the European Union and Member States’ linked and interactive legal systems, it is up to national judges to evaluate these reforms both within the remit of their own legal systems and, in enforcement of mutual recognition claims, vis-à-vis justice systems of other Member States of the European Union. We thus invite domestic and Euopean judges to a discussion focused on the standards of  judicial independence as it manifests itself in the determination of the system of judicial appointments.

The Transnational Training Workshop aims to support judges, prosecutors and lawyers in developing cooperation amongst them by providing knowledge on the substantive and procedural tools on magistrates’ independence as offered by the overlapping EU and Council of Europe based standards. The training will highlight the different techniques of judicial interaction which would be able to protect judicial bodies from external and internal pressures and foster the European Union’s rule of law.

The training is offered within the  European Commission’s funded project TRIIAL - TRust, Independence, Impartiality and Accountability of judges and arbitrators safeguarding the rule of Law under the EU Charter (Horizon 2020, project no. 853832, JUST-JTRA-EJTR-AG-2018). The TRIIAL Project provides training activities and tools for judges, lawyers, prosecutors, and arbitrators on the European rule of law, mutual trust, judicial independence, impartiality and accountability (see the dedicated website here).

6 May 2021 (13.00- 17.30 CET)

First Workshop:

13.00- 13.15             Welcome address, presentation of TRIIAL project and its deliverables Karolina Podstawa (University of Maastricht, Lecturer in European Union Law)
Chair for the Day: Barbara Warwas (Professor of Multilevel Regulation, Hague University of Applied Sciences, TRIIAL partner)
13.15- 13.45 Keynote/Open access lecture: Keynote lecture:: Art. 2 TEU, Art. 19 TEU and Art. 47 CFR, and the standards of judicial independence: challenges of pan-European conundrum through the eyes of a European judge- Kees Sterk (Maastricht University, Professor of European Administration of Justice, former vice-president of the Netherlands Council for the Judiciary, President of the European Network of Councils for the Judiciary)
13.45- 14.00 Questions and Answers
14:00- 14:30 Keynote lecture: The European standards on rule of law and judicial independence in judicial appointments Katarzyna Herrmann (Member of the Legal Service, European Commission)
14:30-14:45 Questions and Answers
14.45-15.15 Keynote lecture: Contextualizing the standard of judicial appointments in the European comparative (and historical) perspective Jakub Jaraczewski, Democracy International
15:15-15:30 Questions and Answers
15:30- 15:45 Break
15:45- 17:00 Hypothetical Case study I
5 parallel working groups guided by a tutor, meeting in the plenary and discussion of the solutions
17:00-17:15 Conclusions & Findings

7 May 2021 (13.00- 17.30 CET)

Second Workshop:
Chair for the Day: Nicole Lazzerini, (Senior Researcher, University of Florence, TRIIAL partner)


Hypothetical Case study II (closed for the participants of TRIIAL project). 5 parallel guided by a tutor, meeting in the plenary and discussion of the solutions

14:45-15:00 Conclusions, Findings & Open Questions

Roundtable: Judicial Self-Government standards: Councils of the Judiciary, Judicial Associations and Judicial Independence – in Search for a Balanced Approach
Moderator Jarosław Gwizdak, INPRIS, & participants



16.15- 16.45

Keynote lecture: Standards of judicial independence under review – open questions, need for guidance and the future of European judiciary Monica Claes (University of Maastricht, Professor of European and Comparative Constitutional Law)

16:45-17:15 Questions and Answers

Final remarks (Karolina Podstawa & Madalina Moraru, Centre for Judicial Cooperation, European University Institute)



To register please contact Kamila Kaczmarek (k.kaczmarek@maastrichtuniversity.nl) or Karolina Podstawa (Karolina.podstawa@maastrichtuniversity.nl) by 27 April 2021.