EU Justice and Home Affairs



NB: This course will not be given during the academic year of 2017-2018!


Gaining insight into the historical and institutional/substantial development of the European integration in justice and home affairs (JHA), and this on the level of several European organisations and institutions (Council of Europe, Benelux, Schengen) and the European Union in particular. At the occasion of a JHA council held in the course of the classes, students will be stimulated to form a personal opinion on the criminal policy area which is being discussed at that time and write a 3 page comment.


History of the European integration and institutional/substantial development of the European decision-making process in justice and home affairs:

  • starting from the relevant developments within the Council of Europe and the Benelux;
  • including the intergovernmental cooperation between the member states of the (then) EEC (the "espace judiciaire européen"-period at the end of the 70’s, the cooperation in the framework of the EPC regarding immigration and external borders (Dublin Convention and Convention on external borders), police cooperation in the framework of the fight against, inter alia, terrorism, drug trafficking and organised crime (Trevi-discussions) and judicial cooperation in criminal matters;
  • analysing the parallel that has been developed regarding the cooperation between the Schengen-countries (original Agreement of 1985, linked to the notions of "free movement of persons" and "area without internal borders" which were enacted with the European Act in the TEC, and the later Implementation Convention of 1990);
  • to finally reach the cooperation between the EU countries on the level of JHA (first involving the Treaty of Maastricht, later involving the Treaty of Amsterdam and the Treaty of Nice, and ultimately in the Lisbon Treaty);
  • analysing the parallel further expansion (geographical and institutional) of the Schengen-group, the ultimate integration of the Schengen-acquis in the framework of the EU and the further development thereof within the EU (SISII, Comix, etc.);
  • paying attention to the external relations of the EU in justice, home affairs and security (especially with the US);
  • paying attention to the transversal matters such as variable integration and enhanced cooperation (on the basis of the Prüm Treaty 2005, Benelux Police Convention 2004);
  • and with focus on the preparations of the new multi-annual JHA policy plan to replace the current Stockholm Programme.
Key words: 
Europe, European Union, EU, Council of Europe, Schengen, justice, home affairs, asylum, migration, border, police, criminal law, security, institutional and organisational perspective
Faculty members: