City Research Online

Transparency in transatlantic trade and data law

Fahey, E. ORCID: 0000-0003-2603-5300 (2019). Transparency in transatlantic trade and data law. In: Abazi, V. & Rosen, G. (Eds.), Foreign Policy Secrets in the Age of Transparency. . Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.


Transparency continues to occupy a patchy and uneven place in EU and US relations in key economic and regulatory areas. This patchiness plays out in a variety of ways including in downgrading by the US of the EU in diplomatic and regional standing albeit non-expressly in recent times. The chapter explores the shifts in practices on transparency in EU-US cooperation from a legal perspective. It focuses on EU-US trade negotiations and data transfer cooperation. Transparency provides a useful point of departure as it is a common value and instrument for the US and EU, yet one that seems to be utilised very differently. Transatlantic relations increasingly show a tension between the government to government model of transparency. In the EU-US data protection regime of the Privacy Shield a complex constellation of subjects is emerging and its genuine enforcement appears open to significant doubt. In trade, the European Parliament increasingly attempts to participate and involve citizens’ rights in new EU-US negotiations and raise civil liberties, citizens’ mobility rights and public interest themes. In light of these developments, this chapter considers how EU and US are becoming divergent in how they handle both communication with each other and toward citizens. The EU is increasingly becoming an organised transparent actor toward the US and trying to increase transparency toward citizens through different instruments, whereas at the moment we see in the US a disruptive environment of information flows and an administration that disrupts the traditional lines of allies and non-allies in how it behaves.

Publication Type: Book Section
Additional Information: This is a draft of a chapter that has been accepted for publication by Oxford University Press in the forthcoming book Foreign Policy Secrets in the Age of Transparency edited by Abazi, V. and Rosen, G. due for publication in 2020.
Publisher Keywords: Transparency, Transatlantic relations; trade; data transfer; Privacy Shield; TTIP
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
J Political Science > JK Political institutions (United States)
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe)
J Political Science > JX International law
J Political Science > JZ International relations
Departments: The City Law School > Academic Programmes
The City Law School > Institute for the Study of European Laws
The City Law School > International Law and Affairs Group
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