Institutional constraints and collegiality at the Court of Justice of the European Union: A sense of belonging?
Maastricht Journal of European and Comparative Law
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Turenne, S. (2017). Institutional constraints and collegiality at the Court of Justice of the European Union: A sense of belonging?. Maastricht Journal of European and Comparative Law, 24 (4), 565-581. https://doi.org/10.1177/1023263X17723813
This article examines how the judicial selection, appointment and renewal processes deeply constrain and influence decision making processes at the Court of Justice. The short tenure period combined with the permanent triennial renewal of sitting judges are a source of instability at the Court of Justice and the discretion left to Member States for renewal is a concern for judicial independence. Besides, even if Member States were to concur on the core requirements of judicial merit, they may disagree on what judicial merit means in the context of the Court of Justice – in the same way that they have different views about European integration and the Court’s role in that respect. Against this institutional background, we argue that collegiality as a constitutive value is a safeguard of independence as much as it facilitates the development of a common discourse within which individual decisions will be made. In this context, the development of legal principles is no worse than can reasonably be expected; the judges display considerable independence within the constraints placed upon the Court. Collegiality in particular is a means towards a jurisprudence that is not too closely based on the legal culture or traditions of any particular Member State. But some judgments may appear to be compromises, and more radical reform will be needed for those who hanker after clearer and bolder decisions. More ambitious judicial reforms can however only succeed with in mind a single, non-renewable term of office, without any triennial renewal of the Court membership.
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1023263X17723813
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/266432