London Metropolitan University Research Institutes

Pilot Judgments Warsaw Seminar

Informal Seminar for Government Agents and Other Institutions on Pilot Judgments procedure in the European Court of Human Rights and future work of CDDH

14-15 May 2009, National School of Public Administration, Warsaw


Seminar Programme

Seminar Papers

The seminar was hosted by Mr Jakub WoBsiewicz (the Polish Government agent) and funded by the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The event was coorganised with HRSJ and held at the National School of Public Administration in Warsaw. At the seminar government agents and officials from the Council of Europe (including the European Court) presented their experiences of the pilot judgment procedure while academics framed these issues within their own research questions. Representatives from NGOs – Amnesty International, the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights, Warsaw & Interights – further enriched the discussion. Among them, therefore, papers examined the procedure from both a practical and theoretical perspective. From the Court Registry, John Darcy explored the ways in which the Court may develop the procedure and suggested some limits to its application; Genevieve Meyer, from the ECtHR’s Dept. for Execution of Judgments discussed the role of the procedure as part of the Committee of Ministers’ function of supervising the enforcement of judgments. Ms Irène KitsouMilonas from the Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights’ outlined the Commissioner’s potential for collaborating in the procedure.

Since the seminar was held in the ‘homeland’ of the Court’s first pilot judgments – (Broniowski v Poland and HuttenCzapska v Poland) – there was an emphasis on the Polish experience of the procedure, with presentations from Polish Ministers: Mr Igor Dzialuk, Undersecretary of State at the Ministry of Justice and Mr Piotr StyczeD, Undersecretary of State at the Ministry of Infrastructure. Government agents from more than a dozen other Council of Europe member states, also attended the seminar, and papers examined the experiences of the Czech Republic, Slovenia, Romania and Turkey (as regards northern Cyprus).  Prof. Philip Leach (HRSJ) questioned the effect of pilot judgments on individual applicants; how the term may be defined and whether generalisations can be made about when a pilot judgment may be issued. Dr MichaB Balcerzak (Uniwersytet MikoBaja Kopernika, Torun) examined the pilot judgment procedure as a form of ‘legal peace’, that is, arbitration between the Court and respondent governments as a way to collaborate peaceably in the process of embedding the Convention into national systems.


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