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The European architecture for the protection of fundamental rights combines the legal regimes of the states, the European Union, and the European Convention on Human Rights. Federico Fabbrini will analyse the constitutional implications of this multilevel architecture and examine the dynamics that spring from the interaction between different human rights standards in Europe.

Detail Summary
Date 22 October 2014
Time 16:00 -17:00
Room Faculty of Law, A.1.01
Organised by Dr Federico Fabbrini, Tilburg University

The presented book adopts a comparative approach, and through a comparison with the federal system of the United States, it advances an analytical model that systematically explains the dynamics at play in the European multilevel human rights architecture. It identifies two recurrent challenges in the interplay between different state and transnational human rights standards – a challenge of ineffectiveness, when transnational law operates as a ceiling of protection for a specific human right, and a challenge of inconsistency when transnational law operates as a floor – and considers the most recent transformations taking place in the European human rights regime.

In his book, Federico Fabbrini tests the model of challenges and transformations by examining in depth four case studies: the right to due process for suspected terrorists, the right to vote for non-citizens, the right to strike and the right to abortion. In light of these examples, the book then concludes by reassessing the main theories on the protection of fundamental rights in Europe and making the case for a new vision-a 'neo-federal' theory - which is able to frame the dilemmas of identity, equality and supremacy behind the European multilevel architecture for the protection of human rights.

The speaker

Federico Fabbrini is Senior Assistant Professor of European & Comparative Constitutional Law at Tilburg University.  His main areas of research are federalism, fundamental rights, separation of powers, economic governance, and global constitutionalism, mainly in a comparative perspective between the European Union and the United States. On these topics he has published widely. His PhD thesis, Fundamental Rights in Europe: Challenges and Transformations in Comparative Perspective has been published by Oxford University Press.


Attendance is free of charge. For organizational reasons, please sign up for the meeting by sending an email to Angela Moisl,


Room Faculty of Law, A.1.01

Oudemanhuispoort 4-6
1012 CN Amsterdam