60 Years of Rome Treaties — 25 Years of Maastricht

Achievements and challenges of the EU as a community of law

The Academy of European Law (ERA) and the European Parliamentary Research Service (EPRS) launched their cooperation with this first joint event commemorating the 60th anniversary of the Treaties of Rome and the 25th anniversary of the Treaty of Maastricht. The Vice-President of the European Parliament, Ramón Luis Valcárcel, delivered the opening remarks and contrasted the historical jubilee dates with the current challenges for the European Union.

The first presentation by Professor Peter-Christian Müller-Graff from the University of Heidelberg presented the EU as a Community of Law and highlighted the ingenuity of the concept of integration through law, even if not all members seem to share the same understanding of the relevance of law. Prof Lucia Serena Rossi from the University of Bologna then looked at the hierarchy of EU norms and their intertwining with the constitutional systems of the Member States, which has often been a bone of contention between the CJEU and national constitutional or supreme courts. Sir David Edward, former member of the Court of Justice of the European Union, examined the challenges to the rule of law by security measures, the balance of which has to defined by the democratic legislator. Finally María José Martínez Iglesias, director of legislative affairs of the Legal Service of the European Parliament, analysed the risks of an increasing proliferation of ‘Soft law’ instruments for the EU as a community of law.

Director Heusel moderated the round table discussion. An intense debate between the audience and among speakers followed. In his concluding remarks, the director of the European Parliament Research Service Anthony Teasdale praised the event as a successful start into further cooperation with ERA. This first joint event in the library of the European Parliament was attended by some 120 participants.


Welcome and opening remarks by Vice-President Ramón Luis Valcárcel, responsible for ERA.

Presentations by

  • Mrs María José MARTÍNEZ IGLESIAS, Director for Legislative Affairs in the Legal Service of the European Parliament
  • Sir David A. O. EDWARD, former member of the Court of Justice of the European Union
  • Prof Peter-Christian MÜLLER-GRAFF, University of Heidelberg
  • Prof Lucia Serena ROSSI, University of Bologna


Dr Wolfgang HEUSEL, Director of ERA


Concluding remarks by

Mr Anthony TEASDALE, Director General of the EPRS