CECS seminar with Visiting Researcher N. Sarah Schirmer

Room: 6B.4.04 - 13:30-14:30

Social services of general interest (SSGI) in small states – Liechtenstein as an example

The World Bank defines small states as having a population of 1.5 million or less. Small states often lack (human, territorial, economical) resources. The discussion about providing social services of general interest (SSGI) therefore not only concerns the question of privatisation or re-communalisation but also of offering the service at stake at all. Should a small state have a hospital, a psychiatry or child-care services? Compared to other small states, Liechtenstein does not lack economic resources, it is not an island and there is no language barrier with regard to its neighbouring countries Switzerland and Austria. Therefore, Liechtenstein’s citizens could – in theory – easily have access to SSGI’s in those countries and do have in practise. In Liechtenstein itself, SSGI’s are manly provided by private undertakings and only a few by the state or public undertakings. What are the legal boundaries of the state regarding the mandating and financing of SSGI’s provided for by (foreign) private undertakings? Being a member of the European Economic Area (EEA), Liechtenstein is not only bound by its national law but also must respect European law to answer this question.

N. Sarah Schirmer is a PhD candidate at the law faculty of the University of Zürich in Switzerland. She works for the research project “Duties of the state in small states – a comparative analysis for Liechtenstein” at the Liechtenstein-Institute in Bendern. Her research focuses on EU-/EEA-state aid and public procurement law. Before joining the staff of the Liechtenstein-Institute, N. Sarah Schirmer has been employed at the Swiss Federal Office for Construction and Logistics and then the Swiss Federal Roads Office.

N. Sarah Schirmer will be staying at the Centre for European and Comparative Legal Studies CECS for 8 weeks under the supervision of Professor Ulla Neergaard.

All interested parties are welcome. Registration is not necessary.