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On 21 June 2019, the IRZ organised a Russo-German workshop on "Judicial Protection of Social Rights in Russia and Germany" in St. Petersburg together with the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy and the State University of St. Petersburg.
The German speakers at the workshop were:
Prof. Dr. Ulrich Becker, Director at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy,
Andreja Bogataj, doctoral student at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy,
Dr. Olga Chesalina, research fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Social Law and Social Policy, and
Professor Dr. Richard Giesen, holder of the Chair for Social Law, Labour Law and Civil Law at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich.
The main Russian participants included jurisprudence scholars from the Chairs of Constitutional Law, Civil Procedure, Labour Law and Occupational Safety and Health at State University of St. Petersburg.
Three focal points in the workshop addressed the following topics:
Constitutional protection of social rights in Russia and Germany;
Design of non-constitutional judicial protection of social rights in Russia and Germany. An exchange on German experience with specialised social jurisdiction;
The importance of "law of judges" in social law.
Above all, presentations given by the German speakers on experience with specialised jurisdiction over social matters were of particular interest to the Russian participants. In Russia, the regular courts have jurisdiction over disputes relating to social security rights (e.g. pension claims). There are no separate courts having jurisdiction over this area. In addition, the question of whether disputes in the field of social law should be dealt with in court according to civil procedural or administrative procedural law is a controversial issue in Russia at present. The German participants were very interested to learn that civil procedural rules may also be applied in Russia.
The event was successful in its aim of fostering a dialogue between German and Russian scholars in the field of social law. The lively discussions that took place illustrated the differences that exist in the field of social law between the two countries and underscored that the participants are interested in an expert exchange which both countries can benefit from. In addition, the event provided foundations for further discussions above and beyond this workshop.
From 3 to 7 June 2019, the IRZ, together with the Philipps-Universität of Marburg and the Law Academy of the Ministry of Justice for the Russian Federation, organised a study visit on medical law to Marburg and Bonn. Taking part in the visit were Russian doctors, leading academics in the field of medical law and representatives of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation. The delegation also included the First Deputy Minister of Health for the Republic of Udmurtia.
German representatives at the event included people from the universities of Marburg and Mainz and from the university hospitals of Frankfurt am Main, Marburg and Gießen and representatives from the Public Prosecutor’s Office and from the North German arbitration body for medical liability issues.
The study visit began in Marburg, offering a platform for the Russian and German participants to discuss their latest theoretical and practical knowledge in the field of medical law. The contributions from the Russian and German speakers revealed a very high level of expertise. On the German side, the focus of the lectures was on the following areas:
The criminal and professional consequences of medical negligence,
offences involving bodily harm and homicide in medical law,
how medical negligence is handled in a hospital legal department and
the practice of the compensation process.
The Russian experts focussed on criminal investigations for doctors and the perspectives for the development of medical liability in the Russian Federation. After the lectures, the participants discussed four practical case examples from Germany and Russia. The expert discussions revealed new perspectives on all sides and enhanced the participants’ professional knowledge of medical law.
On the last day of the study visit, the Russian delegation travelled to Bonn for expert talks at the Federal Ministry of Health, followed by a visit to the IRZ for a lecture on the subject of palliative care in Germany. Here, subjects including patients’ instructions and the financing of hospices were discussed. The study visit was a great success, enabling a fruitful interdisciplinary dialogue between doctors and law professionals, as well as an exchange of experiences between the two countries.
As in previous years, the IRZ was also represented at the IX Legal Forum in St. Petersburg, which took place from 14 to 18 May 2019. Taking part in the event were some 5,000 representatives from 95 countries, including Germany, France, United Kingdom, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Spain and Portugal.
The following international organisations were involved in the IX Legal Forum:
United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL),
International Court of Justice,
World Trade Organisation (WTO),
European Council and
European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.
Once again this year, the Legal Forum dealt with the question of how the globalisation of the economy and the modernisation of the law can be reconciled with one another. This is predominantly about finding standardised legal solutions for the problems arising as a result of globalisation. Within this range of topics, the main focus of the event was on the development of modern law studies and legal training in the Russian Federation, as well as in other countries. Another important topic was the modernisation of Russian law and its alignment with global standards of legal protection, with the objective of including the best application of the law from foreign legislation and thereby protecting the interests of all parties in a legal relationship, e.g. companies, foreign investors and originators.
More than seventy individual events covered these and other current legal issues.
Representing the IRZ were Karin Friehe, a Presiding Judge at the German Federal Patent Court, and Matthias Schmid, Head of Section at the German Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection, who participated in a round table discussion on “Right on information distribution: public vs. private”. At this event, the problems of integrating digital technologies in various spheres of human life were discussed from a legal point of view, in particular the way software companies and social network providers deal with user data. The discussions covered the terms and conditions for using user data for software products, who owns this information and whether this user data is subject to intellectual property. How users can protect their personal data on the Internet was also discussed. During the round table, representatives from Russian and foreign courts, Russian Ministers and Information Technology companies exchanged their points of view and tried to formulate a common position on this key issue.