Anja Møller Pedersen
Karen Blixens Plads 16, 2300 København S, Søndre Campus, Building: 6B.3.24
PHD PROJECT ’RECONCILING THE RIGHT TO PRIVACY WITH FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION’
In C-131/12, Google Spain, an ordinary Spanish citizen requested that Google removed or concealed on the list of results from a search based on his name certain information about him lawfully published in a newspaper several years earlier. The European Court of Justice pronounced that the rights to privacy and data protection in Art. 7 and 8 of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights as ’rule’ override not only the economic interest of the search engine in processing the data, but also the interest of the general public in having access to it, unless a ’preponderant’ public interest is demonstrated. It thereby indicated that these rights are superior to that of freedom of expression in Art. 11, not only violating the strong interdependency between the rights according to international human rights law, but also consistent case law from the European Court of Human Rights.
Against this background and with a view to explore and understand the interrelation between the rights, the project seeks to tease out the underlying rationales behind the rights to privacy, data protection and freedom of expression and explore how they are reflected in EU legislation and case law, and determine the criteria behind each of them. These analyses will then serve as a foundation for exploring how the rights may be reconciled, and which of the identified rationales and criteria may determine the outcome in cases of conflict between them.
The PhD project is co-funded by University of Copenhagen (CIIR) and Danish Institute for Human Rights