Reform of Epidemic Surveillance Exposing 'Standardising' Decisions and Their Replacements by Regulations

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Table of Contents: I. Introduction. – II. Reform of epidemic surveillance. – III. Limited attention to decisions. – IV. Linguistic dimension. – V. Diversity and incidence of decisions. – VI. Inspiration for comparison. – VII. Substantial classification of decisions. – VIII. Outlining the doctrine of “standardising” decisions. – IX. Identified replacements by regulations. – X. Evaluation of these replacements. – XI. Perspectives and limits of the tendency. – XII. Envisaged reform of secondary law instruments. – XIII. Conclusions.

Abstract: The reform of epidemic surveillance in the European Union as a reaction to the Covid-19 pandemic attracts attention to one sporadically discussed phenomenon. Following the usual meaning of this term in legal settings, many decisions address individual cases. Nevertheless, a new category of decisions establishing rules has emerged in the past decades, i.e. “standardising” (“normative”, “norm-setting”, or “general”) decisions. These decisions have addressed the cooperation between the EU and national authorities, funding programmes and assistance to foreign countries. The European Parliament and the Council approved them. Theoretical reflections on these decisions are rare, but their pitfalls are identifiable. Namely, their possible effects on individuals are limited. The definition of unaddressed decisions provided by the Lisbon Treaty did not clarify the situation. Therefore, the recent tendency to replace these decisions with regulations deserves attention.

Keywords: European Union – secondary law – decision – regulation – law-making – official languages.

European Papers, Vol. 8, 2023, No 3, pp. 1599-1628
ISSN 2499-8249
- doi: 10.15166/2499-8249/732

* Associate Professor of EU law, Masarykova Univerzita,


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