City Research Online

The strengthening of the European Technological Sovereignty and its legal bases in the Treaties

Fahey, E. ORCID: 0000-0003-2603-5300 & Poli, S. (2022). The strengthening of the European Technological Sovereignty and its legal bases in the Treaties. rivista, 2(2), pp. 147-164.


The authors show how the European technological sovereignty is evoked by the EU institutions to argue that the EU should be more competitive in the global market and fill in its technological gaps. At the same time, this concept has an assertive and defensive dimension in its framing which raises many questions. There are not inconsiderable legal issues possibly arising from its application in light of its extensive scope. The article demonstrates the complexities of the span of the legal base for technological sovereignty when subjected to scrutiny from a legal perspective and critically examines the legal bases underpinning the measures (or proposed EU measures) taken to strengthen European technological sovereignty. The essay shows that there is a trend to stretch the use of art. 114 TFEU beyond the limits allowed by the principle of conferral. However, when the enhancement of the technological sovereignty affects national security, the EU appears to fall short of the required competences. The consequences for the European integration process of the Union’s exercise of the competences necessary to enhance European sovereignty in these situations, are potentially far-reaching. In principle, such an exercise may imply the advancement of European integration process.

Publication Type: Article
Publisher Keywords: Technological sovereignty; EU Competence; Internal market; Legal base; CJEU; Digital sovereignty
Subjects: J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe)
K Law
Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
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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