On the 13th of June, Filipe Brito Bastos, post-doctoral researcher at ACELG, defended his doctoral dissertation at the European University Institute of Florence.
The examining board was composed by Professor Deirdre Curtin (supervisor), Professor Miguel Poiares Maduro (EUI – School of Transnational Governance), Professor Paul Craig (St. John’s College, University of Oxford), and Professor Herwig Hofmann (University of Luxembourg).
After an engaging discussion taking about 2 hours and 15 minutes, the examining board unanimously decided to confer the degree of Doctor of Laws of the European University Instite, and to publicly encourage Filipe to publish the dissertation as a “much-needed” book.
The thesis argues that EU courts have developed unprecedented principles of administrative law to ensure rule of law values in European composite, or ‘multilevel’, administrative procedures.
Such procedures, which exist in many areas of EU law, involve authorities situated in different levels of administration and legal systems. They give rise to much litigation, and raise significant constitutional problems.
Filipe’s thesis dwells on these problems, and explores the solutions given by EU courts to them. Besides being interesting from a doctrinal point of view, those solutions, Filipe argues, depart from the ECJ’s traditional way of understanding the relations between national and EU administrative power. Indeed, they tend to conceive of national and EU authorities not as strictly divided, but as a single, integrated administration. National authorities, in particular, are treated as an extension of the EU’s own administration – as the EU’s ancillary administration.