PhD/ECR Workshop on Values in EU Law and Policy

Call for Papers, deadline for applications: 29 February 2024

lOCATION : Law School, Old College, University of Edinburgh


Europa PhD/ECR Workshop on

Values in EU Law and Policy

Europa Institute, University of Edinburgh

2-3 May 2024

Article 2 of the Treaty on European Union identifies the Union’s values as ‘human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, the rule of law and respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities’. Recent challenges both within and beyond the Union have resulted in a newfound prominence for the Union’s values. Through a series of crises and a changing geopolitical order, the Union has been prompted to act in a more strategic fashion, to identify its interests and differentiate its actions from other actors. The rhetoric of European values underpins these actions. Internally, the undermining of some key values of the Union has given rise to the legal operationalisation of Article 2 TEU in contexts such as the rule of law crisis, asylum law, the political rights of Union citizens and minority rights. Expression of the Union’s values is not however limited to Europe’s place in the world or instances of constitutional conflict. Values can and do inform and find expression in other areas of Union law and policy, including data protection, the environment and climate, market regulation and security and defense.

The increasing visibility of the Union’s values raises a number of questions. What is the role of values in EU law and policy? What is the nature of the Union’s values? Are they universal or is there something particularly European about such values? What is the relationship between national and Union values? How do Union values contribute towards a European identity or distinctiveness? How are these values operationalised in law and/or concretely inform policy making? What is the relationship between values and interests?

The Europa Institute at the University of Edinburgh is seeking submissions for a two-day in-person workshop for PhD researchers and Early Career Researchers (ECRs) working at British and other European universities to explore the place and functioning of values in EU law and policy. The workshop will take place from 2-3 May 2024 at the University of Edinburgh. Participants will be given approximately 10 minutes to present their ideas as part of a panel. Chaired discussions with other participants and assembled academics will then provide feedback on projects.

The Institute welcomes submissions from researchers working in EU law, policy, integration studies, political science, political theory, international relations and other cognate fields.  Abstracts of 200 words or less should be submitted to along with a short biographical statement (2-3 sentences) by 29 February 2024. Applicants should be either a current PhD student or an ECR within five years of their PhD award at the date of the conference. Travel and accommodation costs along with the workshop dinner will be covered by the Europa Institute. Those selected to participate will be informed by mid-March 2024. Participants will send written papers/summaries (max. 5,000 words) of their project by 5 April 2024. The papers will be circulated to all participants to read in advance of the workshop.