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p2_farewell_slide_v4-colorWith a set of more than 50 recommendations for the improvement of practical cooperation between data protection authorities, a multi-national research consortium – led by Prof. Dr. Paul De Hert of Vrije Universiteit Brussel – concluded a four-year research initiative in the framework of two projects named “PHAEDRA”. These studies were commissioned and financially supported by the European Union.

Personal data no longer stay within one country. They are constantly being exchanged between jurisdictions and this elevates risks for both individuals as well as public and private organisations. When something goes wrong – for example a data breach – the consequences are not only often serious, but also these consequences equally often occur in more than one country. Given the importance of information for contemporary economy and national security, an adequate response to tackle this challenge is therefore critically needed. It is a global standard in data protection law that dedicated supervisory authorities have been set up not only to sanction violations of this branch of law, but also to work to prevent these violations from happening. These authorities normally have been busy with matters concerning their own countries. As these days personal data transcend boundaries, these authorities now need to work together efficiently to achieve this double end” – said Prof. De Hert.

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PHAEDRA projectThe PHAEDRA project (Improving Practical and Helpful cooperAtion betweEn Data Protection Authorities) entered a new phase on 15 January 2015. Growing out of the first PHAEDRA project (2013-2015), PHAEDRA II (2015-2017) will identify and develop practical solutions to improve cooperation between data protection authorities (DPAs). Co-funded by the European Union under its Fundamental Rights & Citizenship Programme, the new project will focus on challenges for cooperation arising from the pending European data protection reform and develop strategies and practical instruments for strengthening such cooperation under the new legal framework.

Similarly to the first project, PHAEDRA II is led by Prof. Paul De Hert and his team at the Law, Science, Technology and Society Research Group (LSTS) of the Vrije Universiteit Brussels (VUB). In addition to VUB’s LSTS, the consortium comprises Trilateral Research & Consulting LLP (TRI), Generalny Inspektor Ochrony Danych Osobowych (GIODO) – the Polish Data Protection Authority, and Universitat Jaume I (UJI), also partners to the first PHAEDRA project consortium.

Moving to the second stage of the project, the kick-off meeting of PHEADRA II took place on 20 January 2015, on the eve of the 8th Computers, Privacy and Data Protection Conference (CPDP, 21-23 January 2015). The consortium was fully represented at the meeting, including the PHAEDRA project officer Ms Lilian Shah. The PHAEDRA II project will run until 14 January 2017.

Further information on the PHAEDRA II project can be found at http://www.phaedra-project.eu and @PHAEDRAproject.