Schrems II: What Surveillance Reforms Are Needed To Preserve Transatlantic Data Flows?





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CDT Europe event – Schrems II: What Surveillance Reforms Are Needed To Preserve Transatlantic Data Flows? Januryar 14 2021

Thursday, January 14

4:30 – 6:00 pm CET / 10:30 – 12:00 am ET


On July 16 2020, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) ruled in the Schrems II case that the EU-US Privacy Shield provides insufficient protection against the U.S. government’s intelligence surveillance activities. Since then, the European Commission has come out with recommendations on Standard Contractual Clauses, which are an alternative GDPR compliance mechanism, and the European Data Protection Board (EDPB) has issued updated ‘European Essential Guarantees’. Both imply that surveillance reforms are needed on the U.S. side in order to find a solution.

In the meantime, the uncertainty threatens to disrupt trans-Atlantic data flows that are essential to the operations of many U.S.-based tech companies and the services that they provide to EU citizens.

This live-streamed event organised jointly by the Centre for Democracy & Technology (CDT) and the European Academy for Freedom of Information and Data Protection (EAID) will bring together some of the leading voices on the Schrems II debate from both sides of the Atlantic, drawing from academia, civil society and the data protection community. It will provide an opportunity for an in-depth discussion of key questions that arose from the latest CJEU decision and the possible ways forward for the incoming Biden Administration. In particular, it will shed light on the changes that are needed to U.S. intelligence surveillance law and practice that would protect the rights of Europeans, and seek to foster understanding among European policy makers of the surveillance reform options the U.S. has for promoting compliance with the Schrems II decision.


  • Kristina Irion – Assistant Professor, Institute for Information Law, University of Amsterdam
  • Kenneth Propp – Adjunct Professor, Georgetown University Law Center and Senior Fellow, Atlantic Council’s Future Europe Initiative
  • Sharon Bradford Franklin – Policy Director, New America’s Open Technology Institute
  • Ulf Buermeyer – President and Legal Director, Gesellschaft für Freiheitsrechte/Freedom Rights Society

Moderated by:

  • Alexander Dix – Vice-Chair, European Academy for Freedom of Information and Data Protection
  • Iverna McGowan – Director for Europe Office, Centre for Democracy & Technology

Accessibility: If you have access needs or questions, please contact Timothy Hoagland (he/him), CDT Interim Director of Communications, in advance of the event via email at [email protected].