European Economic and Social Committee

Its role is representing workers' and employers' organisations and other interest groups

President: Georgios Dassis.

Members: 350 from all EU countries.

Established in: 1957.

Location: Brussels (Belgium).

Website: European Economic and Social Committee

The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) is an EU advisory body comprising representatives of workers' and employers' organisations and other interest groups. It issues opinions on EU issues to the European Commission, the Council of the EU and the European Parliament, thus acting as a bridge between the EU's decision-making institutions and EU citizens.

This information is taken from this link.

Court of Justice of the EU

Its role is ensuring EU law is interpreted and applied the same in every EU country; ensuring countries and EU institutions abide by EU law.

Members: 1 judge from each EU country, plus 11 advocates general.

Established in: 1952.

Location: Luxembourg.

Website: Court of Justice of the European Union

The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) interprets EU law to make sure it is applied in the same way in all EU countries, and settles legal disputes between national governments and EU institutions.

This information is taken from this link.

What does the Ombudsman do?

The CJEU gives rulings on cases brought before it. The most common types of case are:

  • Interpreting the law

    (preliminary rulings)

    National courts of EU countries are required to ensure EU law is properly applied, but courts in different countries might interpret it differently. If a national court is in doubt about the interpretation or validity of an EU law, it can ask the Court for clarification. The same mechanism can be used to determine whether a national law or practice is compatible with EU law.

  • Enforcing the law

    (infringement proceedings)

    This type of case is taken against a national government for failing to comply with EU law. Can be started by the European Commission or another EU country. If the country is found to be at fault, it must put things right at once, or risk a second case being brought, which may result in a fine.

  • Annulling EU legal acts

    (actions for annulment)

    if an EU act is believed to violate EU treaties or fundamental rights, the Court can be asked to annul it – by an EU government, the Council of the EU, the European Commission or (in some cases) the European Parliament. Private individuals can also ask the Court to annul an EU act that directly concerns them.

  • Ensuring the EU takes action

    (actions for failure to act)

    The Parliament, Council and Commission must make certain decisions under certain circumstances. If they don't, EU governments, other EU institutions or (under certain conditions) individuals or companies can complain to the Court.

  • Sanctioning EU institutions

    (actions for damages)

    Any person or company who has had their interests harmed as a result of the action or inaction of the EU or its staff can take action against them through the Court.

This information is taken from this link.


The CJEU is divided into 2 courts:

  • Court of Justice – deals with requests for preliminary rulings from national courts, certain actions for annulment and appeals.
  • General Court – rules on actions for annulment brought by individuals, companies and, in some cases, EU governments. In practice, this means that this court deals mainly with competition law, State aid, trade, agriculture, trade marks.

Each judge and advocate general is appointed for a renewable 6-year term, jointly by national governments. In each Court, the judges select a President who serves a renewable term of 3 years.

How does the CJEU work?

In the Court of Justice, each case is assigned 1 judge (the "judge-rapporteur") and 1 advocate general. Cases are processed in 2 stages:

  • Written stage

    • The parties give written statements to the Court - and observations can also be submitted by national authorities, EU institutions and sometimes private individuals.
    • All of this is summarised by the judge-rapporteur and then discussed at the Court's general meeting, which decides:
      • How many judges will deal with the case: 3, 5 or 15 judges (the whole Court), depending on the importance and complexity of the case. Most cases are dealt with by 5 judges, and it is very rare for the whole Court to hear the case.
      • Whether a hearing (oral stage) needs to be held and whether an official opinion from the advocate general is necessary.
  • Oral Stage

    (a public hearing)

    • Lawyers from both sides can put their case to the judges and advocate general, who can question them.
    • If the Court has decided an Opinion of the advocate general is necessary, this is given some weeks after the hearing.
    • The judges then deliberate and give their verdict.
  • General Court procedure

    It is similar, except that most cases are heard by 3 judges and there are no advocates general.

This information is taken from this link.

Alonso Escamilla

Project Coordinator of Biderbost, Boscan & Rochin (BB&R)

Has been Executive Consultant for the European Commission, EU-LAC Foundation, Inter American Development Bank and United Nations Development Programme.

He is PhD Candidate in Youth Policies at the University of Salamanca. He has a Master’s degree in Public Service and Social Policies (University of Salamanca) and European Bachelor’s degree in Psychology at the Pontifical University of Salamanca.

Nalia Rochin

Founding Partner of Biderbost, Boscán & Rochin (BB&R)

Professor at Autonomous University of Baja California and Valle de México University. Researcher in different projects related to local development, public administration and US-Mexico relations (with funds of the Colegio de la Frontera Norte and Autonomous University of Baja California). Former member of the migration research programme (Iberoamerica Studies Institute of the University of Salamanca). She has been consultant for the Inter-American Development Bank.

Her work focuses on international cooperation as a catalyst of political development in Latin America. She has a Master degree in International Economy (University of Guadalajara) and a postgraduate course in Latin American Studies (University of Salamanca). She has a Bachelor's degree in International Relations (Autonomous University of Baja California). Winner of the Autonomous University of Baja California Prize for undergraduate students.

Pablo Biderbost

Founding Partner of Biderbost, Boscán & Rochin (BB&R)

Professor at the Pontifical University Comillas (Madrid). Researcher at the Iberoamerica Studies Institute in the University of Salamanca. Member of the Governing Board of the Chamber of Commerce of Peru in Spain.

He has worked for the Argentinean Institute of Corporate Social Responsibility and for the Inter-American Institute of Human Rights. He has been a consultant for the World Bank, European Union, Inter-American Development Bank, UNESCO and International Organization for Migration. He is a member of the Jury of the Calvez Prize to the Civic Responsibility of the Social-Ecumenic Forum.

He has been Visiting Researcher at the Colegio de la Frontera Norte (Mexico) and at Nuffield College of the University of Oxford (United Kingdom). He has taught at the University of Salamanca, Pontifical University of Salamanca, University of Tübingen, Autonomous University of Baja California, Catholic University of Cordoba, Catholic University of Salta and Universidad Argentina de la Empresa. He specializes in e-government, social innovation, social responsibility and migration policies. He has a PhD in Political Science at the University of Salamanca. He has a Master's degree in Latin American Studies (University of Salamanca). He has a postgraduate course in Design and Evaluation of Public Policies by FLACSO. He has a Bachelor's degree in Political Science (Catholic University of Cordoba).


  • Biderbost, Boscan & Rochin (BB&R)
  • Gran Vía 59-61, 1º - 2
  • 37001 Salamanca, Spain
  • Phone: +34 923 054 933
  • Email: bbyr@bbyr.com
  • Web: www.bbyr.com


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