Expert Dialogue: EU Blocking Regulation and Extraterritorial U.S. Sanctions

On the 18th of April 2019, RENFORCE organizes an afternoon expert dialogue on the EU Blocking Regulation and extraterritorial US sanctions. The seminar will take place in Utrecht from 14.00 -17-30. The aim of the seminar is to understand the EU’s motives for the reactivation of the Regulation, analyze its provisions, identify implementation problems, and discuss its effectiveness in countering US extraterritorial sanctions and protecting the EU’s economic sovereignty in respect of its trade relations with Iran.

Speakers will include Prof. Cedric Ryngaert (UU/RENFORCE), Prof. Touraj Atabaki (Senior Researcher, International Institute of Social History; Professor Emeritus, holder of the chair of the Social History of the Middle East and Central Asia at Leiden University), Ms Ellie Geranmayeh (Senior Policy Fellow and Deputy Head of the MENA Programme, European Council on Foreign Relations, London), Mr Robbert de Bree (Wladimiroff Lawyers, The Hague), and Prof. Tom Ruys (Professor of International Law, Ghent University).

For further information on the program click here, and for registration please send an email to



Call for abstracts: European Equality Law Review

In December 2018, Utrecht University was awarded a new four-year tender by the European Commission for the coordination of the European Equality Law Network! The primary task of the network is to gather reliable, expert information on legislation, case law and national developments to enable the Commission to fulfil their role as guardian of the treaties, respond to new challenges and set agenda for law- and policy-making in the field of gender equality and non-discrimination. The network is coordinated by Prof. Linda Senden, Dr. Alexandra Timmer, Franka van Hoof LL.M and Raphaële Xenidis LL.M, with the involvement of senior experts Dr. Susanne Burri and Prof. Frans Pennings.

At present there is an opportunity for you to contribute your research to this project, as  European Equality Law Review is now welcoming submissions for its 2019/1 and 2019/2 issues. Articles will be submitted to peer-review within the Network’s editorial team at Utrecht University and Migration Policy Group and the Network’s executive committee of senior experts. For all further information on the call please click here, but keep in mind that the present call invites authors to submit their abstracts by 11 February 2019!



Lecture: Christine Parker “Political Consumerism as Democratic Governance Pathway?”

On the 20th November from 15:00-16:00  Professor Christine Parker will give a talk on “Political Consumerism as Democratic Governance Pathway?”, at Drift 23, room 206. In this talk, she will critically investigate the role of food labelling and its contestation as a governance pathway towards healthy, sustainable, fair food systems, using the results of a three year empirical socio-legal research project of higher animal welfare labelling in Australia as a case study. In Australia higher welfare and free range labels now dominate the market for egg, pig and chicken products and have become the subject of extraordinary levels of public attention and concern. Moreover the Australian government lags behind the EU in keeping up with the challenge of managing the complex issues arising from animal welfare science, citizen concern and interrelated environmental and health and safety impacts of intense animal agriculture.

For further details on the talk, and information on ow to sign up to attend please see here.



Sybe de Vries: Magazine Article “Towards a Deeper and Fairer Internal Market”

This month’s SERmagazine included a segment from RENFORCE researcher Sybe de Vries, entitled “Op weg naar een diepere en eerlijkere interne markt” (Towards a deeper and fairer Internal Market), in which he discusses the rapid changes of the European market and their relation to the relevant choices and priorities of the Dutch government. In that context, he advocates for more attention to be given to the specific social goals of Europe.

You can read the full magazine, and Sybe’s segment, here!



Workshop: “Independence in the Public Sector: Concepts and Uses”

The Montaigne centre and RENFORCE have organized a workshop on the topic of “Independence in the Public Sector: Concepts and Uses”.

The workshop will take place on the 16th of November in Utrecht t (Janskerkhof 2-3, room 118), and will include segments from University of Antwerp’s Koen Verhoest, Bjorn Kleizen and Jolijn de Roover and Utrecht University’s Miroslava Scholten and Frans van Dijk.

Subjects discussed under the umbrella topic of the workshops will include the various dimensions of autonomy, independence of institutions such as the judiciary and EU agencies, the impact of structural and regulatory reforms on autonomy, and many more. Combined, these subjects will work to bring various perspectives from different sides of the debate together by including speakers from public administration and various fields of law.

The full program can be found here!