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LL.M. Programme Modules

LL.M. Programme Modules

*The Law School reserves the right to vary the following list and, in particular, the right to withdraw and add modules. Note that timetabling considerations may also restrict choice.


AI, Ethics, Regulation and Governance

(LA7139) 10 ECTS

Available in 2022/23

Lecturer: Dr. Nicola Palladino

This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

LL.M. Section A
LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section B
LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

* Priority will be given to students registered for the LL.M (International and European Business Law) and LL.M (Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law) degree programmes. Any available places will be offered to students on other LLM programmes in September 2022.

“Artificial Intelligence” is a label used as shorthand to describe an expanding ‘family’ of technologies capable of performing specific tasks and achieving specific goals mimicking some human cognitive functions. AI systems do this by collecting, analysing, and interpreting data to make decisions with a certain degree of autonomy, take actions, and eventually modify the environment in which they operate. In so doing, AI systems raise both potential and actual risks. On the one hand, they can help us address the complexity of the modern world, optimizing our decision-making processes and resource allocation with positive relevant effects in production, transport, crisis management, environment, and healthcare. On the other hand, AI systems raise concerns ranging from privacy and data protection, to discrimination, manipulation, and detrimental effects on jobs and rights in the workplace. In recent years, the awareness that the full potential of this technology is attainable only by building a trustworthy and human-centric system has spread across all stakeholders. In this context, AI systems must be aligned with societal values and governed through accountable arrangements to avoid both misuse of AI applications capable of endangering people and underuse because of a lack of public acceptance. Scholars also point out how cooperation among stakeholders is needed to achieve regulation capable of ensuring predictability and legal certainty even if the debate remains open regarding the role and responsibilities of different actors and the proper degree of mandatory requirements needed to safeguard people without hindering innovation.

Not by chance, in the past few years, we have witnessed a flourish of initiatives aimed at setting principles, rules, and procedures for the development and deployment of AI systems. These range from codes of conduct, ethical guidelines, international statements and recommendations, to the regulations recently proposed by the European Union (the Artificial Intelligence Act) or the US (the Artificial Intelligence Initiative), or standardization processes taking place at ISO and IEEE.

The module will introduce students to this complex and fascinating landscape. First the module will provide students with a basic understanding of what AI systems are and how they function, pointing out the social, political, and economic implications of this technology. Real-world cases will be employed to illustrate both benefits and risks associated with AI applications. Subsequently, principles and requirements (such as fairness, accountability, transparency, explainability, data protection) stemming from a variety of sources will be discussed paying attention to the technical and organizational arrangements (es. fairness metrics, audit, impact assessment) that could be put in place to deal with the ethical/legal dimension of AI development and deployment and their integration within broader regulatory and governance frameworks. Students will be expected to read selected materials ahead of class, engage in topic discussions and case analysis in class, as well as familiarizing themselves with identified AI ethics tools, methods and processes

Learning Outcomes:

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

  • Evaluate the social, legal and political implication of AI applications and its technical specificnesses
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the main ethical principles and dimensions related to AI development and deployment
  • Identify rationale, provisions and requirements of the i EU’s incoming AI regulation and draw relevant comparisons between approaches in different geopolitical contexts (including the US and China)
  • Be aware of the state-of-the-arts of tools, methods and processes to deal with AI ethical and legal requirements
  • Perform AI ethical impact assessment / human rights due diligence

  • Assessment: Essay (3000 - 4000 words) – 70%, Class Presentation (including the delivery of the presentation and the preparation and dissemination of appropriate materials) - 30%

    African Human Rights Law

    (LA7013) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Professor William Binchy

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    The module analyses core aspects of African human rights law. It examines the application in the African context of international human rights instruments, with special emphasis on the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights and Protocol. It considers the expanding jurisprudence of the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights and assesses the extent to which the Charter has influenced domestic legal systems in Africa. Several specific human rights themes are examined, including the death penalty, fair trial rights , the right to healthcare, equality issues, prisoner's rights, freedom of expression and the rights of ethnic and religious minorities. So far as domestic legal systems are analysed, the emphasis will be on the position in Commonwealth states.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

  • Identify the relationship between global and regional human rights and the incorporation of human rights norms at national level in Africa.
  • Analyse key issues, including the death penalty, fair trial rights, gender equality and customary law.
  • Discuss African human rights law in comparative perspective.
  • Appraise and evaluate the role of tribunals and courts in Africa in protecting social and economic rights, freedom of expression and the right to liberty.
  • Assessment: Take-home Assignment – 100%

    Business and Human Rights

    (LA7117) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr. Rachel Widdis

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    Pre-requisite: Students are asked to take into account that this module includes discussion of cases and provisions for corporate liability in civil and criminal law. It remains fully accessible to students from non-law backgrounds once they engage in keeping up to date with pre-reading and with lectures.

    Business and Human rights is concerned with respecting human rights and improving the accountability of business for adverse impacts on human rights and the environment. Alongside states’ duties to protect human rights from harm there is growing awareness amongst stakeholders, policy makers and business leaders that rights respecting and sustainable business models are needed.

    This module explores the adequacy of existing international initiatives, and changes relating to emerging regulation in particular within the EU.

    It considers issues with accountability for business related harms in criminal law, and access to remedy within civil law. The class will study recent cases in the home states of parent companies concerning the involvement of group related operations in adverse impacts, such as environmental damage which also affects livelihoods and communities.

    Within this fast-moving field, the objective is to explore existing challenges, emerging approaches and developments, and to encourage students to evaluate means to prevent harm occurring  and to enable access to remedy.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

    • Appreciate the legal, commercial and human impacts at the interface between business and human rights.
    • Understand the basis for attributing obligations to respect human rights to states, multinational corporations, and other business enterprises.
    • Critically evaluate the main international instruments and policy initiatives in the area, and discuss the existing accountability gap.
    • Discuss recent developments in regulation in this field, including emerging obligations on companies to conduct due diligence regarding adverse human rights and environmental impacts across their own operations and supply chains.
    • Discuss legal and procedural barriers to remedy for victims of business related adverse impacts on human rights.
    • Demonstrate an understanding of causes of action and potential effects on business stemming from adverse impacts on human rights throughout their operations.
    • Understand and evaluate trends in disclosure, mechanisms to prevent adverse impacts and accountability should harms occur.
    • Discuss how business policies and practices are responding to increased focus on these issues and attendant risks, themes which link into the areas of sustainability and ESG.

    Assessment:

    • Essay - 80%. 5,000 word essay due at the end of the semester from a choice of assigned topics.
    • Class Presentation - 10%. Students will deliver a short presentation in self-selected groups from a a choice of assigned topics. The mark for the group will apply to all students within the group.
    • Class Attendance/Participation - 10%. This will be determined on the basis of individual participation in discussions in class.

    The Chinese Legal System In Comparative Perspective

    (LA7080) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Professor William Binchy

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    China has emerged as a leading world economic and political power, with a distinctive legal system. The module examines the Chinese legal system, placing it in its historical context, and looking in particular at areas of comparative law interest. It considers such aspects as Chinese constitutional and administrative law; commercial law; intellectual property; the criminal justice system; tort law; family law; human rights; and the roles of judges and legal practitioners in Chinese society. The module aims to give students an understanding of the Chinese legal system in comparative perspective, with a good grounding in how law operates in a range of key areas of public and private law in contemporary China.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Identify key aspects of the Chinese legal system that are of importance from a comparative law perspective.
  • Appraise the main features of Chinese public and private law, in such areas as constitutional law, commercial law, tort law and family law.
  • Critically analyse human rights issues in the context of Chinese law and society.
  • Assessment: Take-home Exam – 100%

    Comparative Constitutional Law and Theory

    (LA7085) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Prof Oran Doyle / Prof Satoshi Yokodaido

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    This module explores some of the most important contemporary debates in constitutionalism, through the lens of constitutional change. exploring the conceptual parameters of amendment, its political stakes, and examples of amendment practices around the world. We will situate the amendment formula of the Irish Constitution as a critical international comparator that sheds light on many of the key debates in the field, from unconstitutional amendment and informal amendment to amendment difficulty and the role of the people. Among the topics that will be considered are the following:

    • Articulating a concept of constitutional amendment;
    • The democratic value served by constitutional amendment;
    • The doctrine of unconstitutional constitutional amendment;
    • The role of the people in constitutional amendment;
    • Deliberative democracy and citizens’ assemblies;
    • Pathologies of constitutional amendment: abusive constitutionalism and de facto unamendability;
    • Informal constitutional amendment.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • To formulate their own account of the nature of constitutions and constitutional law;
  • To understand the benefits and dangers of comparative analysis in constitutional law;
  • To critically assess concepts of constitutional change;
  • To assess critically the democratic values served by constitutional amendment;
  • To design constitutional amendment provisions that appropriately protect core constitutional values;
  • To assess the contemporary challenges of democratic backsliding and populism;
  • To research independently about comparative constitutional amendment;
  • To write coherently about comparative constitutional amendment.
  • Assessment:

  • 1,500 word repsonse paper (incl footnotes) – 25%
  • 3,000 word module essay (incl footnotes) - 75%
  • Comparative Product Liability: Common Law, EU and US Perspectives

    (LA7086) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Mr. Alex Schuster BL

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    Comparative Product Liability explores the extent to which manufacturers (and other businesses in the supply chain) are liable for injuries caused by defects in products. In examining selected areas of product liability law in the Common Law World, the EU and the US respectively, this comparative course is designed to afford participants with insights into how social, economic and cultural factors, as well as legal principles, have shaped the differences between the three legal regimes.

    Issues to receive special emphasis in the context of this course will include the concept of a producer, the definition of defectiveness, the significance of instructions for use and danger warnings, the manufacturing defect/design flaw dichotomy, development risks, the heads of recoverable damages, the running of time in product liability claims; and an incisive exploration of both the legal and practical obstacles faced by litigants in cases involving tainted blood transfusions.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Outline the common law principles governing liability for defective products.
  • Understand the pivotal importance of both the concept of defectiveness and the development risks defence in an EU context.
  • Trace the evolution of US Products Liability Law by acquainting themselves with the provisions of Section 402 (A) of the Restatement (Second) of Torts and the Restatement (Third) of Torts: Product Liability.
  • Examine the importance of risk/benefit analysis in determining defectiveness in a US Products Liability context.
  • Explain the significance of manufacturing defects on the one hand, and design warnings/instructions for use/design defects on the other, from a US perspective.
  • Compare the different legal regimes for compensating consumers (injured by allegedly defective products) in the Common Law World, the EU and the US respectively;
  • Assimilate the technical rules governing the running of time in product liability claims;
  • Identify and describe the key rules governing both the quantum and the recovery of damages;
  • Visualise some of the pitfalls inherent in product liability litigation.
  • Assessment: Examination in this module is by way of 'take home' assignment (with an upper limit of 5000 words).

    Contemporary Issues in EU Law

    (LA7120) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Catherine Donnelly

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

    In an era in which the powers of the EU and the actions taken by Member States pursuant to EU law are ever-expanding, the focus of this module will be on contemporary issues in EU law. The module will be suitable for both those who have studied EU law previously and those who have not. It is however important to emphasise that the basic principles of EU law and institutional structures of the EU will not be taught. Following a brief introduction to critical aspects of EU law, the module will focus on contemporary questions and challenges facing the EU. The topics covered will vary depending on what is currently facing the EU at the time. However, topics likely to be covered include: human rights in the EU and the impact of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, data protection, rule of law in the EU, State aid, Brexit, and EU responses to the Covid-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Conduct effective and targeted research in case law and academic legal commentary regarding the EU law;
  • Assess the theoretical rationale for fundamental doctrines of EU law;
  • Identify, evaluate and critique the evolution of human rights protection in the EU;
  • Discuss and debate the challenge of delivering accountability and remedial protections for individuals in the EU;
  • Discuss the substantive case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union;
  • Classify and compare the grounds for judicial review in EU law;
  • Synthesise and evaluate case law on current issues of concern in the EU; and
  • Apply EU law and theory to concrete practical contemporary problems.
  • Assessment: Essay (5,000 word count) – 100%

    Contemporary Issues in Intellectual Property Disputes

    (LA7141) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Mr Glen Gibbons BL

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section B
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

    The module will encourage students to critically evaluate the function of damages, injunctions (including the emerging jurisprudence on internet blocking injunctions) and ancillary relief in the case of infringement and the legal protection afforded to persons subject to groundless threats of infringement. The focus of the course will be to address contemporary issues and emerging trends in IP disputes including Patent litigation and also the role of criminal sanctions in the protection of Intellectual Property. This module will primarily be based on the Common Law position regarding remedies and sanctions but will frequently refer to CJEU judgments and to other EU jurisdictions where appropriate to provide jurisprudential examples.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Critically evaluate the impact of IP injunctive relief including in relation to blocking injunctions, the tests for interlocutory injunctions in patent, trade mark and copyright litigation
  • Develop an understanding of the relevant tests or criteria for the award of damages in patent, trade mark and copyright litigation and the distinction that applies between each category
  • Synthetise and evaluate an understanding of the role of account of profits as an alternative remedy to damages
  • Debate the overlap between traditional Common Law/equitable relief and relief under EU law including the challenges of IP Enforcement Directive in the internet age
  • Develop an understanding of the law concerning groundless threats
  • Develop an understanding of the increased use of criminal sanctions for IP matters
  • Critically analyse IP remedies in International Trade Law (including WTO and the TRIPS Agreement)
  • Hone their research skills through their research paper
  • Demonstrate familiarity and understanding of the module materials, which will allow them to explore topics in greater
  • Assessment:

  • 5,000 word essay – 100%. The essay is designed to assist students in developing their research skills and also to allow them to explore a topic in greater depth.
  • Contemporary Issues in International Law

    (LA7100) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Mr Alex Layden

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

    This module will give students a theoretical and practical understanding of international law in its broader context. The module will consider contemporary themes and issues that arise within the fields of public and private international law, including international human rights law, the law of armed conflict, international criminal justice, international commercial law, and international environmental law. Students will consider how international law responds to these contemporary issues and the topics will be explored through primary materials and selected academic literature. Overall, the module will provide students with the opportunity to explore and evaluate the fluid relationship between international law, politics, economics, and culture, in the context of real-world international law issues.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Identify core principles of public and private international law and evaluate their application to a range of contemporary global issues.
  • Critically analyse the issues explored in the module from an international law perspective.
  • Demonstrate a nuanced understanding of the relationship between international law and politics.
  • Use relevant primary and secondary materials to engage with international law from the perspective of a researcher and a practitioner.
  • Assessment:

  • 100% Essay (5,000-5,500 words)
  • Contemporary Issues in Refugee Law

    (LA7121) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Mr Diego Castillo Goncalves

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    As the global refugee crisis continues, this course offers a timely opportunity to engage with the complex interaction of international and regional frameworks concerning forced migrants. The course will focus on contemporary issues in refugee law, including the right to asylum and safe passage, non-refoulement, the particular social group in refugee law, complementary protection, exclusion from protection, child refugees, durable solutions (including resettlement and relocation) and the externalisation of protection.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Identify and describe essential characteristics of international refugee law;
  • Debate different approaches to the interpretation of the 1951 Convention on the Status of Refugees;
  • Explain and apply the legislative framework of the Common European Asylum System;
  • Critically analyse key rights and pathways to refugee protection;
  • Conduct independent research on a particular aspect of refugee law.
  • Assessment:

  • Three x 1,000 word reflection piece, each worth 10% (totalling 30%)
  • 4,000 word essay - 70%
  • Data Protection: Law, Policy and Practice

    (LA7122) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr David Fennelly, Dr Eoin O’Dell

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section B
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section B
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    LL.M. Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

    *Priority will be given to students registered for the LL.M (Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law) degree programme. Any available places will be offered to students on other LLM programmes in late September 2022.

    In recent years, data protection has gained a high public profile and has become a dynamic and important area of legal practice. With the introduction of the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), which came into force in May 2018, the legal landscape of data protection is undergoing significant and far-reaching change. The aim of this module is to provide an introduction to this changing framework for data protection, combining perspectives from law, policy and practice, so as to give students a well-rounded understanding of this fast-moving field. This course will explore the key concepts and current issues in data protection, including: the principles of data protection; the rights of data subjects, including the right to be forgotten; the accountability of data controllers and processors; the challenge of international data transfers; and the systems for enforcement and compliance. In addition to the course coordinators, students will benefit from guest lectures from leading experts in data protection law, policy and practice.

    In advance of the first class, please read Case C434/16 Nowak v Data Protection Commissioner (CJEU; 20 December 2017).

    Learning Outcomes

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Understand the core principles of data protection law and how they apply in practice;
  • Develop an insight into data protection law in its theoretical, policy and practical contexts;
  • Identify, interpret and apply the key sources and primary materials;
  • engage in advanced research and analysis on current issues in data protection;
  • Critically analyse the legal and policy framework of data protection.
  • Assessment: Essay (100%)

    Assessment in this module will be by one Essay (100%). It must be

  • no more than 6,000 words (INCLUDING footnotes)
  • referenced according to OSCOLA Ireland system of legal citation,
  • submitted, only Turnitin on Blackboard, on the Friday of the week after the end of teaching term.
  • The topic of the Essay must be either (i) one of those set out on the course Blackboard website, or (ii) one which is approved by the lecturers; and - either way - it must be settled on or before the class in week 6 (Wednesday 20 October 2021).

    EU Aviation Law

    (LA7076) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Ewa Komorek

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    Pre-requisite - Basic knowledge of EU law general, and EU competition law in particular, is a welcome although not essential requirement for participation in this module.

    This module aims to provide students with an overview of the regulatory structure of civil aviation in the European Union. Out of all transport modes in Europe, air transport has experienced the fastest growth in recent years. It makes a key contribution to the European economy and plays a vital role in regional development and integration of Europe, as well as ensures connectivity with the rest of the world. This is largely due to the work of the European Union and the creation of single market for aviation.

    This module deals with EU laws, policies and case law in the field of air transport. Main topics include the liberalization of air transport and the creation of the internal market for aviation; the European safety and security policies; the protection of passenger rights; the protection of environment; and the application of EU competition law to air transport industry. The relations of the EU with third countries, following the European Court's of Justice 'Open Skies' judgments are also addressed. The module also looks at the EU regulatory responses to the recent Covid-19 crisis. Guest lectures are provided by industry experts from i.a. Irish Aviation Authority, Ryanair and Stephenson Harwood law firm (London and Paris). Internship opportunities are provided for students achieving best result in the module.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Appraise and evaluate the regulatory structure of civil aviation in the European Union;
  • Identify and evaluate the major developments in the regulatory framework since 1987;
  • Identify and analyse main areas affected by regulation in the aviation industry in the EU;
  • Critically evaluate the role of various regulatory bodies, national and international, in the aviation industry;
  • Apply critical analysis and problem-solving skills to questions relating to EU aviation law.

    Assessment:

  • Essay (5,500 word limit) - 95%
  • Blackboard participation – 5%
  • EU Consumer Law

    (LA7042) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Mr Alex Schuster BL

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section B
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    The EU is comprised of circa 445 million consumers based in 27 different countries. Although drawn from different traditions and cultures, all of these myriad consumers are supposedly the ultimate beneficiaries of the process of market integration in the EU (insofar as the internal market mechanism is designed to provide them with high quality goods and services at optimal prices). A closely related issue is whether the blueprint for EU law and policy in the consumer field has been adequately designed to turn its 445 million consumers from market passengers into market drivers. With all of this in mind, the module focuses on the following subject areas:

  • The Evolution of EU Consumer Law and Policy;
  • The Concept of a ‘Consumer’; the ‘Vulnerable Consumer’ phenomenon; the importance of Behavioural Economics;
  • Positive Harmonization;
  • Negative Harmonization;
  • Consumer Contract Law (Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts, Consumer Sales, Supply of Services and Guarantees, and Digital Contracts);
  • Product Liability and Product Safety
  • Travel and Tourism Law
  • Consumer Rights
  • Unfair Commercial Practices;
  • Litigation, Redress and Enforcement;
  • Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Identify and describe the evolution of Consumer law and policy at an EU level;
  • Locate the relevant legislative and judicial texts;
  • Recall and correctly interpret substantive EU Consumer law;
  • Examine the extent to which EU Consumer law has transformed European consumers from market passengers into informed drivers of the marketplace;
  • Examine the legal principles underpinning digital contracts for the supply of goods and services;
  • Critically assess the problems inherent in the enforcement of EU Consumer Law;
  • Outline the importance of EU Consumer Law for businesses selling goods and services on a pan-European basis.
  • Assessment: The assessment in this subject is designed to measure your ability to produce a high calibre research essay/assignment within a relatively short space of time (an invaluable skill which will test your mettle as prospective practising lawyers/legal academics). You will be provided with a choice of four ‘take home’ essay topics/assignments in Week 9 of Hilary Teaching Term 2023. By that point in time, you will have received a thorough grounding in the fundamentals of EU Consumer Law. You will then be afforded approximately six weeks to produce and submit a detailed essay/assignment (with an upper limit of 5000 words) during Assessment Week.

    EU Digital Single Market (Media and Content Regulation)

    (LA7123) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Ewa Komorek

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section B
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

    The European media landscape is undergoing a transformation, characterised by a steady increase of convergence of media services, with a visible move towards intertwining traditional broadcast and internet. Information and communication technologies (ICTs) are revolutionising the development and distribution of information today, giving a unique chance to better create and market European content. To function optimally, a "single European digital media market" needs a minimum set of common rules. To this end the module would analyse the European Commission’s regulatory efforts in three fields (three EU media policies within the Single Digital Market):

  • Audiovisual and Media – the Audiovisual Media Services Directive (AVMSD) which created single European market for audiovisual media services. The Directive was most recently amended in 2018 to bring it in line with the new digital realities.
  • Media Freedom and Pluralism in the Digital Age – transparency, freedom and diversity remains in Europe's rapidly changing media landscape.
  • Media literacy – the European Commission is pursuing several actions in this field aimed at increasing the critical thinking towards the media among EU citizens, including the ability to distinguish information from propaganda, to deconstruct media communication and to interact with social media in a mindful way.
  • Public Service Media - Guest lectures are provided by industry experts from the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland, media consultancy companies, European Commission and others.
  • Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Identify and evaluate the EU regulatory structure governing the (mainly audiovisual) media;
  • Appraise the importance of the Digital Single market initiative and the Audiovisual Services Directive for the EU regulation of the media;
  • Critically evaluate the role of European Union in the international regulation of the media industry in Europe;
  • Identify and assess the main issues connected with the need to maintain pluraic and diverse media market in Europe and the role the European Union plays in this area;
  • Appraise the importance of promoting media literacy and identify and assess he EU’s initiatives in the area of EU regulation of the media.
  • Assessment:

  • Essay (5,500 word limit) - 95%
  • Blackboard/Online participation – 5%
  • EU Employment Law

    (LA7107) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Professor Mark Bell

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

    This module examines the role of the EU in Employment Law. It traces its historical evolution, from a very limited legal competence in the founding Treaties, through to an extensive role today. The module identifies and explores current issues, such as: regulating digital labour platforms and the gig economy; combating discrimination at work; ensuring decent wages and dignified working conditions; protecting workers during business restructuring.

    The main themes covered in the module will be:

  • the evolution of EU Employment Law;
  • the employment relationship;
  • individual rights (working conditions, anti-discrimination, reconciling work and family life, precarious work)
  • collective rights (worker participation in the enterprise, business restructuring).
  • Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • explain the basic principles of EU employment law;
  • analyse the contribution the Court of Justice to this area of law;
  • critically appraise the role played by the EU in employment law;
  • demonstrate written communication skills;
  • apply analytical and problem-solving skills to current issues in employment law.
  • Assessment:

    Assessment will be in two components:

  • 40% of the marks are allocated for an assessed essay submitted mid-way through the module. The maximum length will be 2,000 words, including footnotes. This essay will focus on problem-solving skills.
  • 60% of the marks are allocated for an assessed essay submitted at the end of the module. The maximum length will be 3,000 words, including footnotes. This essay will focus on critical analysis skills.
  • EU Financial Services Law

    (LA7025) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Mr Donald A. MacLean

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section B
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    *Priority will be given to students registered for the LL.M (International and European Business Law) and LL.M (General) degree programmes. Any available places will be offered to students on other LLM programmes in September 2022.

    This module is a survey of the primary principles in the regulation of financial service providers within the EU (and Ireland). We will look at past, current and future development of banking, securities, occupational pension and insurance regulation, such as:

  • Irrational for, and impact of, regulation on the provision of financial services;
  • Standardisation and harmonisation of law.
  • coordination and cooperation among Member States.
  • Comingling of sectors and resultant issues.
  • With regards to the following subject matter:

  • Major Concepts — The Single Market; Freedom of Movement of Capital; Mutual Recognition, Risk and Risk Management; Capital Adequacy; Prudential Supervision; Misconduct; and Consumer Protection
  • Regulation of EU Banking — Introduction to the Single Supervisory Mechanism; the Single Resolution Mechanism; Authorisation; Capital Requirements; Reporting
  • Regulation of EU Securities — Introduction to the Securities and Collective Investment Scheme Directives; Regulated Markets & Trading; Authorisation; Capital Requirements; Reporting; Market Integrity; Market Abuse
  • Regulation of Pensions — Introduction to Occupational Pension Directives; Portability and Other Issues
  • Regulation of Insurance — Introduction to Insurance Directives; Capital Requirements; Reporting;
  • Cross-sectoral issues.

  • Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Explain in general terms the major directives and regulations governing financial services in the European Union.
  • Explain the principles behind authorization, regulation and enforcement related to financial services in Ireland and the EU.
  • Explain the need for regulation to protect consumers/ investors, financial stability, and market integrity
  • Identify specific EU and Irish financial services' issues related to the European system of regulation of financial services.
  • Assess the impact of regulation on financial services in the EU.

  • Assessment

  • Coursework - 100%.
  • EU State Aid Law

    (LA7138) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Mr Christopher McMahon BL

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    In the EU, the spending decisions of Member States are significantly constrained by State aid law. EU State aid law refers to the body of rules set out in Articles 107-109 TFEU, secondary legislation and the case law of the Court of Justice of the European Union which limits the ability of Member State governments to hand out subsidies or other advantages to businesses. These advantages have been interpreted in an increasingly broad manner and do not only cover direct payments but can also include loans, guarantees, tax exemptions, tax deferrals and certain forms of regulation.

    EU State aid law represents a vitally important part of internal market regulation and competition policy in the EU that has come under increasing scrutiny in recent years due its role in policing the tax policies of Member States, in framing the competitive relationship between the EU and the UK in the aftermath of Brexit and in co-ordinating the fiscal response of Member States to the pandemic. Ireland has a particular strategic interest in the interpretation of these rules in light of the ongoing dispute with the European Commission over the alleged underpayment of €13 billion in taxes by Apple. Because of the broad reach of these rules into a wide range of public policy interventions, an understanding of these rules is essential in both the public and private sectors across the EU.

    The topics covered in this module include:

  • the underlying theories and rationales justifying subsidy control and State aid control at the EU level and their relationship with the EU’s social market economy;
  • the substantive rules governing the grant of State aid in the EU, including the general prohibition in Article 107(1) TFEU and the criteria for assessing compatibility with the internal market in Article 107(2)-(3) TFEU;
  • the procedural rules governing the investigation of State aid measures;
  • judicial review of public enforcement decisions;
  • private enforcement mechanisms;
  • the relationship between State aid control, fiscal sovereignty and tax harmonisation in the EU;
  • the role of State aid control in the relationship between the EU and the UK in the aftermath of Brexit.
  • Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • apply, analyse, synthesise and evaluate legal and economic theories justifying subsidy control and State aid control within the EU;
  • explain, apply and critically evaluate the substantive rules in EU State Aid Law contained in EU Treaties, secondary legislation and case law;
  • explain, apply and critically evaluate the procedural rules in EU State Aid Law contained in EU Treaties, secondary legislation and case law;
  • analyse and critically evaluate the role of EU State aid control in the development and functioning of the EU internal market and its rules;
  • critically analyse and evaluate the role of EU State aid law in governing the relationship between the EU and its Member States;
  • apply their understanding of EU State aid law to contemporary issues and events and evaluate the impact of EU State aid law on these issues;
  • develop their own research question on EU State aid law, generate independent research and analysis on that question and defend their conclusions.

  • Assessment

  • Research proposal = 10% (no more than 1,000 words excluding references)
  • Research essay (no more than 5,000 words excluding references) = 90%
  • The assessment for this module will require students to produce a research proposal on a topic relating to EU State aid law which will form the basis of the research essay which will be the primary form of assessment for this module. The proposal will identify a research question, a preliminary review of the relevant case law, legislation and academic commentary and a brief account of the expected conclusions. The proposal will also outline an indicative structure and proposed abstract for the research essay. Students will also be required to produce a longer research essay based on the topic outlined in their proposal.

    European Trademark and Design Law

    (LA7093) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Ms Gemma O’Farrell BL

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section B
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

    This module will cover EU Trade Mark Law and will focus on Community Directives and Regulations and the enforcement and protection of these rights within the EU including the Trade Mark Recast Directive. The module will analyse legislation in light of relevant case-law of the Court of Justice of the European Union and will consider the criteria for obtaining protection for a trade mark, as well as the limits to protection in the content of infringement proceedings. The module will consider the variety of forms of registration available for trade marks within the EU as well as revocation and proceedings for invalidity. Topics covered include: the acquisition of trade marks; the rights conferred by a trade mark and the limits to those rights under EU Law. The module will also addresses other issues affecting the use of trade marks, including in particular, the law on misleading and comparative advertising and the law on unfair commercial practices, the protection of geographical indications and designations of origin and the relationship between trade marks and domain names. It will also deal with parallel importations and exhaustion of rights. This module will also examine the registered trade mark and design regimes at an EU and national level.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Compare, critically analyse and debate the approaches to trade mark protection at a national and European level;
  • Identify the applicable EU legislation in the areas of: trade marks, unfair commercial practices, comparative advertising, geographical indications and designations of origin, domain names and exhaustion of rights;
  • Interpret and analyse that legislation in the light of relevant and developing case-law of the Court of Justice of the European Union;
  • Give clients practical advice on the nature and extent of the rights conferred under EU law in the above identified areas;
  • Use their knowledge of EU law to interpret and apply national implementing legislation in these areas;
  • Analyse existing problems and deficiencies in the EU’s legislative framework governing these areas and the main challenges to be addressed by future legislation;
  • Apply critical analysis and problem-solving skills to essay and problem based questions on current Trade Marks issues in the EU;
  • Explain the interaction between trade mark and design laws;
  • Review different models of design protection and compare approaches to design protection.
  • Assessment: Coursework in the form of 5000 word essay.

    Freedom of Expression and Intellectual Property Law

    (LA7091) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Eoin O'Dell

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

    This module considers three ways by which Intellectual Property (IP) rules inter-operate with Freedom of Expression (F0E) concerns. First, some IP rules reinforce F0E. For example, copyright has been called an engine of free expression, and the protection of trademarks can similarly promote F0E. Here, the policies underlying IP and F0E are mutually reinforcing, and the question is the extent to which such doctrines protect initial speakers' IP and F0E rights. Second, many IP rules are restrictions upon F0E. For example, copyright law, trademark law and the equitable doctrine of breach of confidence can prevent subsequent speakers from publishing words, images, music, and so on. Here, the policies underlying IP and F0E are antithetical, and two questions arise: (i) whether the initial speakers' IP rights are legitimate restrictions upon subsequent speakers' F0E, and (ii) whether subsequent speakers' F0E can limit initial speakers' IP rights, either by constraining the interpretation of the instrument affording the IP right in question, or by relying directly upon a constitutional protection of F0E. Third, initial speakers' IP rights are restricted by exceptions and limitations, such as fair dealing and fair use in some copyright regimes. These restrictions provide some scope for the protection of subsequent speakers' F0E; and the question arises whether constitutional protections of F0E can influence the interpretation or application of such restrictions.

    We will discuss, compare, and contrast, a very wide range of cases and materials, especially from the EU, the ECHR, the US, the UK, South Africa, and Canada, as well as from Ireland. The first part of the course will develop a methodology to measure IP rights against FOE guarantees in various constitutions, conventions and charters. The conclusion here will be that where IP restricts FOE, the courts will generally regard the engaged speech as commercial in nature, and apply a flexible standard of review or scrutiny, so that the IP restriction is upheld. The second part applies that methodology in the context of injunctions against intermediaries to prevent infringements of IP rights, especially in copyright and trade mark cases. There are several injunctions and various rights in play here, including (but by no means limited to) FOE. The conclusion here will be that, whilst early cases correctly found that injunctions were more than proportionate restrictions upon various rights, later cases mechanically applying to the earlier miss the point that, just because an individual restriction upon a specific right in specific circumstances is proportionate, it does not follow that a different restriction upon a different right in different circumstances is also necessarily proportionate. The third part considers the extent to which user interests should be conceptualised as user rights. The conclusion will be that such a reconceptualisation will have a considerable impact on the earlier analyses.

    In advance of the first class, please read Case C-401/19 Poland v Parliament and Council (CJEU; 26 April 2022).

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • comprehend and critically understand one of the key debates in modern Intellectual Property law;
  • critique the intellectual foundations of the law and theory relating both to Intellectual Property and to Freedom of Expression;
  • assess Intellectual Property doctrines in the context of policy, politics and the economy;
  • address current and emerging issues relating to the protection of Intellectual Property online;
  • engage with such doctrines and issues from the perspective of Freedom of Expression; and
  • apply the insights gained in the course to current debates about reform of Intellectual Property.

  • Assessment:

  • Essay (85%) and Continuous Assessment (15%)
  • The Essay (85%) must be:

  • no more than 6,000 words (INCLUDING footnotes),
  • referenced according to OSCOLA Ireland system of legal citation, and
  • submitted, ONLY via Turnitin on Blackboard, by 4:00pm on the Friday of the week after the end of teaching term.
  • The topic of the Essay must be either (i) one of those set out on the course Blackboard website, or (ii) one which is approved by the lecturer; and - either way - it must be settled on or before the class in week 6 of term.
  • The Continuous Assessment (15%) will consist of marks for participation in the module, and in particular for participation in one of the two in-class moots in the module. 

    Globalisation and Law

    (LA7034) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Professor William Binchy

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    In the present era of globalisation we are witnessing the collapse of national barriers in the face of the international movement of capital, workers, commodities, ideas and communications of every kind. The ending of the Cold War, the increasing power of international corporations, the development of information technology and the expansion of air travel have had a huge impact in changing global culture and on our understanding of law. The traditional models of nation states and international law have given way to challenges to the concept of sovereignty, the development of international human rights tribunals, such as the International Criminal Court, the extension of new international legal rights and duties to non-state actors and the development of new models of global administrative regulation. The experience of the pandemic has raised troubling questions about the relationship between national interests and global responsibilities

    This module seeks to examine these developments in order to gain new insights into the nature and purpose of law. It analyses how globalisation has changed traditional approaches to public and private international law, human rights law, international trade law, freedom of expression (in relation to such matters as defamation, pornography and incitement to hatred), political dissent, terrorism and cultural and religious diversity.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Assess the effects of globalisation on traditional approaches to law at the national and international levels;
  • Critically analyse the impact of globalisation of the categorisation of public and private law and of the interrelationship between constitutional and administrative law, international human rights norms, civil law and criminal justice;
  • Locate key legislative and judicial texts;
  • Debate current issues relating to such matters as the impact of globalisation on cultural and religious diversity, the responsibilities of transnational corporations and controls on the Internet.
  • Assessment: Take-home Examination (100%).

    Human Rights Law Clinic

    (LA7131) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr David Fennelly, Mr Colin Smith

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A

    *A maximum of 10 students is permitted on this module. Prerequisite - Students must have studied human rights law at undergraduate level or higher and be registered on the LL.M (International and Comparative Law) degree programme.

    This module will explore the application of human rights law in practice. Students – who will already have studied human rights law – will examine the practice of human rights, reflecting on the legal and policy framework for human rights protection and the deployment of core lawyering skills in this context. In order to gain an in-depth understanding of human rights law in practice, students - under the supervision of the instructors - will collaborate with a partner organisation on a topical human rights issues which form part of the organisation’s advocacy and case-work. Students will undertake individual and group research, culminating in a final research report which will be presented to the partner organisation at the end of the module. In weekly workshops, students will review the work-in-progress with the instructors, gaining insight into the realities of human rights practice while also developing core lawyering skills.

    Learning Outcomes

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Understand the application of human rights law in practice;
  • Apply core legal skills in a practical context;
  • Develop their knowledge and skills through practical experience / engagement;
  • Reflect upon practical experience / engagement to broaden and deepen their understanding of human rights law;
  • Understand the role of human rights litigation and its limitations;
  • Recognise and respond to ethical issues arising in human rights practice;
  • Work effectively in a group and professional setting;
  • Make a contribution to the community and gain an appreciation of the value of civic engagement as a method of learning .
  • Assessment

  • Learning Journal - 40%
  • Group Report/Presentation - 60%
  • International and European Copyright Law and Policy

    (LA7092) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Giuseppe Mazziotti

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section B
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

    * Priority will be given to students registered for the LL.M (Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law) and LLM (General) degree programmes. Any available places will be offered to students on other LLM programmes in September 2022.

    This module sheds light on how international and EU legislative instruments, from the end of the 19th century onwards, have sought to ensure an effective and uniform recognition, enforcement and exploitation of copyright and related rights. The module aims at analyzing and critically evaluating the most important principles of artistic and literary property embodied in the 1886 Berne Convention, the 1994 TRIPS (Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights) Agreement, the 1996 WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization) ‘Internet’ treaties and several EU directives that, while seeking to harmonize national laws on copyright from the early 1990s onwards, embody measures of industrial, innovation and cultural policy. The module will place particular emphasis on technological aspects of copyright and of its enforcement with the aim to assess validity and desirability of rules, principles and legislative solutions in an increasingly broad and interconnected digital environment.

    The module initially introduces copyright law by critically overviewing its history and justifications and the international and the EU legal frameworks. Classes detail the principles of international copyright law (territoriality, reciprocity, primacy of author’s rights, protection of so-called ‘neighboring’ rights) by emphasizing the centrality of the Berne Convention and its relationship with the World Trade Organization’s TRIPS Agreement and other international agreements administered by WIPO. The module engages in a comprehensive analysis of the EU legislative context, which includes the protection of literary and artistic works, computer programs and databases and unsettled issues regarding new types of works such as those generated by artificial intelligence technologies. Students will understand the relevance of this legislation from a constitutional perspective that sheds light on the legal basis of copyright harmonization; the implications of the principles of free movement of goods and exhaustion of rights for copyright’s protection; and the impact of competition law on copyright in Europe.

    Specific classes will aim at detailing essential aspects of copyright’s protection such as: (i) the subsistence of rights and the requirement of originality, in light of the concepts of ‘authorship’ and the ‘idea/expression’ dichotomy; (ii) copyright’s term of protection and persisting issues regarding its uniformity throughout the EU; (iii) the scope and character of moral and economic rights, including the exclusive rights of reproduction, communication to the public and distribution as well the resale right applicable to artworks; (iv) copyright exceptions under international, comparative and EU law; (v) compensation rights and the unsettled issues of national levies for uses that entail private copying of protected works; (vi) individual and collective management of copyright and related rights in the Internet age as well as the institutions, legal standards and EU law obligations that are relevant in these businesses; (vii) online copyright enforcement measures and their constitutional limits, especially in the realm of social media; (viii) the modernization of the EU legal framework, particularly through the provisions of the EU ‘Digital Single Market’ Directive (2019/790) and its (ongoing) national transpositions.

    Lectures will be designed to foster interactivity, ensuring an ongoing dialogue between the instructor and the whole class. Most of the recommended readings will be freely accessible through a dedicated Blackboard folder. To facilitate a critical review of all the materials, the module requires students to contribute to classes by actively participating in classroom discussions and publishing posts, questions and comments on a Blackboard discussion forum.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Demonstrate a thorough understanding of the international and European legal regime of copyright laws and how this regime interacts with national IP laws
  • Analyze the impact of international agreements on EU copyright legislative instruments
  • Analyze the requirements for obtaining copyright protection in Europe, considering also the most important principles laid down under international agreements such as the Berne Convention, the TRIPS Agreement and the WIPO Internet Treaties
  • Analyze the scope of protection as well as the relevant exceptions and the enforcement of the exclusive rights granted under copyright at international, EU and domestic level
  • Demonstrate a thorough understanding of the latest legislative measures the EU adopted with the aim to modernize the copyright framework, considering technological developments that have changed the way rights are exploited, managed, enforced, and in certain cases, relinquished for non-commercial purposes.
  • Assessment:

  • 4,000-word essay based on one out of three questions (80%)
  • Coursework: class discussions, blogposts, and Q&A's on Blackboard (20%).
  • International and European Human Rights Law

    (LA7001) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Ms Grainne Mullan BL

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    This modules examines various aspects of international human rights law, and discusses the general themes of which human rights can and should be protected by the international legal order, for example whether the international community should attempt to regulate the cultural practice of female circumcision. Particular emphasis is placed on the European Convention on Human Rights, which is often described as the most successful human rights system in the world. The course examines the institutional structure of the ECHR system and also certain substantive rights protected by the ECHR, such as freedom from torture, freedom of expression, and family rights. The impact of incorporation of the ECHR into Irish law is also considered.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Identify and describe the essential characteristics of international human rights law
  • Debate different theoretical perspectives on human rights law;
  • Discuss and evaluate the interaction between international human rights law and domestic human rights law;
  • Explain the law and practical effects of the European Convention on Human Rights 1950
  • Critically analyse certain key rights guaranteed by international human rights law;
  • Conduct substantial independent research into a particular aspect of human rights law.
  • Assessment:

  • Take-home Assignment - 70% of the final mark
  • Each student is required to make a presentation one an allocated subject - 30% of the final year mark.
  • International Aviation Law

    (LA7097) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Ewa Komorek

    This module is available on the following programmes Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    As noted by E.M. Giemulla, ‘Aviation is a transnational, border-crossing phenomenon. Without aviation, the globalisation of the flow of people and goods, and of the mixing of cultures would have been impossible. Without aviation, the global awareness that we all live together on one planet could not have developed’ (International and EU Aviation Law, Kluwer Law International 2011) From its conception in the early 20th century, aviation has been the matter of international concern. The increasing number of legal issues in this area led to the adoption of numerous international measures.

    This module aims to provide students with an overview of the international regulatory framework governing civil aviation. This module explains the history of international aviation law and examines the international legal framework governing civil aviation. Particular attention is paid to the 1944 Chicago Convention which is a cornerstone governing international civil aviation. The course topics also cover the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the 1929 Warsaw Convention and 1999 Montréal Convention on carriers’ liability, the 1963 Tokyo Convention on crimes committed on board aircraft and the 1970 Hague Convention on unlawful seizure of aircraft (the ‘Hijacking Convention’). The module also looks at the international legal responses to the recent Covid-19 crisis and finishes with the analysis of the regulation of international interests in mobile equipment (2001 Cape Town Convention) and aviation liability insurance. Guest lectures are provided by industry experts from i.a. the Irish Aviation Authority, Air Accident Investigation Unit, Stephenson Harwood law firm, Paris.

    Internship opportunities are provided for students achieving best results in the module.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Identify and evaluate the international regulatory structure governing civil aviation;
  • Appraise the importance of the Chicago Convention for the public international aviation law;
  • Critically evaluate the role of ICAO in the international regulation of civil aviation;
  • Analyse the principles of private international aviation law as governed by the Warsaw and Montreal Conventions;
  • Identify main international legal instruments dealing with crimes committed on board aircraft
  • and unlawful seizure of aircraft;
  • Analyse main principles governing the international regulation of aviation liability insurance;
  • Identify and assess legal principles governing the international interests in mobile equipment;
  • Apply critical analysis and problem-solving skills to questions relating to international aviation law.
  • Assessment:

  • Essay (5,500 word limit) – 95%
  • Blackboard Participation – 5%
  • Intellectual Property Rights and Emerging Technologies

    (LA7143) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Giuseppe Mazziotti

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section B
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

    Since the launch of the Digital Agenda in 2010, and even more so after the definition of a Digital Single Market Strategy for Europe in 2015, the EU Commission has never stopped proposing new legislation aimed at paving the way for an EU-wide exploitation of creative works, new technologies and services supplied through digital environments and increasingly sophisticated and commercially valuable software and hardware. EU law and policy makers recently touched upon the areas of copyright and related rights, online platform regulation, access to public sector information and open data, standard essential patents, and the implementation of artificial intelligence technologies to strike a balance between the protection of creativity, innovation and investments in new contents and services and the pursuit of public policy goals. These goals include new ways to protect consumers, competitors, and business partners of the largest tech companies from their overwhelming bargaining, commercial and technical power, and the preservation of Europe’s cultural and linguistic diversity. Recent and newly enacted legislation consists of both sector-specific measures, such as Directive 2019/790 on ‘Copyright in the Digital Single Market’, and horizontal regulatory interventions, such as the Digital Services Act and the Digital Markets Act, which place the EU in a unique position worldwide.

    EU law has often raised criticism as regards the suitability of its burdensome approach to technology regulation and the effects of its digital laws and policies on Europe’s economic growth, technological competitiveness and citizens’ freedom of expression, artistic and media freedom, if compared to other regions of the world. This module critically evaluates EU law and policy by reflecting on their actual and future impact in different artistic, technological and business domains that have emerged or dramatically evolved in the past 10-15 years: (i) the digitization of the music, film and TV businesses, especially through the phenomenon of content “platformisation” and streaming services; (ii) the transition of the book publishing, news publishing, software and videogames industries from businesses models based on sales of physical media or devices to platform- and Cloud-based subscription services; (iii) the emergence and exponential growth of a ‘Social Media Entertainment’ sector based predominantly on collection, processing and exploitation of real-time data provided by users who access tech companies’ “free” communication and media service, being enabled to establish themselves as professional content creators; (iv) mass digitisation projects funded by public bodies and curated by cultural institutions such as public libraries, museums and archives, aiming to give access to cultural heritage in the public domain and other materials, including orphan works and out-of-commerce works; (v) mass digitisation projects developed by private companies to pursue both pro bono and corporate interests, especially as regards collection of large volumes of data to develop AI technologies; (vi) markets for mobile and portable devices and the related applications, whose manufacturing and programming heavily depend on pre-existing technologies and data that can either be covered by patents, copyrights and trade secrets or be freely available in the form of open and re-usable data.

    Classes are designed to foster interactivity through a combination of lectures and discussions with the module instructor; short papers shared on Blackboard in response to articles, research results and other contents presented or made available by a selected group of industry experts and academics; and the analysis of relevant judgments, commercial disputes, policy documents as well as licensing schemes and agreements in several industry sectors. Students will gain familiarity with forms of individual and collective management and enforcement of intellectual property rights to understand how emerging technologies have changed and challenged these rights’ basic functions as well as their nature and scope in the above-mentioned business scenarios. Most of the recommended readings will be accessible through a Blackboard folder. Each class will be divided in two sessions, the second of which will be designed to foster a dialogue between the students, the instructor and, in certain classes, an industry or academic expert.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Critically evaluate the objectives of the EU Digital Agenda and of the Digital Single Market Strategy regarding intellectual property rights, emerging technologies, the protection of creative works and the development of innovative business models in several industries of key relevance for Europe’s digital economy.
  • Demonstrate a thorough understanding of the various licensing schemes and commercial exploitation strategies implemented for musical works, films and TV programs, books, newspapers, computer programs, videogames, mobile applications and data and their different consequences for the Digital Single Market.
  • Understand, from both a legal and business perspective, the impact of emerging technologies and new business models on Europe’s digital market integration and the pursuit of public policy goals, including the promotion of cultural and linguistic diversity.
  • Comprehend the essential function and character of collective rights management organisations and their mutual representation agreements, at both European and international level, in the creative industries (especially the music sector).
  • Analyse complex administrative decisions and judgments on the compatibility of the licensing and enforcement of national intellectual property rights with EU law.
  • Understand the role that tools such as metadata, repertoire databases and content identifiers play in digital markets for contents and services protected by intellectual property rights.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the scope of application of the existing and upcoming legislation and identify gaps, inconsistencies, or unsettled issues, from both a legal and business perspective.
  • Assessment:

  • The evaluation of student achievement of the learning objectives will be based on a final essay (80%) whose length should not exceed 4000 words (excluding footnotes and mere references). Students will be able to choose one out of three questions the instructor will circulate during the semester. The essay will have to be submitted through Blackboard/Turnitin.
  • 20% of the final mark will be based on: (i) one 1000-word response paper related to an article or presentation included in the module curriculum (to be published on Blackboard); and (ii) classroom interactions and Q&As shared with the whole class via the module’s discussion forum. The instructor will facilitate the preparation of response papers through a calendar made available shortly after the first lecture.
  • International Business Tax Law

    (LA7031) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Ms Sara-Jane O'Brien

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    This module is gives students an introduction to international and European tax law.

    The history of direct taxation within the European Union will be outlined, starting with EU primary law and its impact on Member States’ direct taxation, seen through fundamental cases and case studies. Key EU tax directives in the area of direct taxation and fiscal state aid will be introduced.

    Throughout the module, there will be discussions of tax competition and cooperation, emerging trends in international and European taxation and a consideration of the role of businesses as taxpayers within European and global society.

    Previous knowledge of taxation or tax law is not required.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Identify and critically engage with the jurisdictional bases upon which states impose business taxation with particular reference to the OECD Model Convention.
  • Critically evaluate and discuss key business taxation articles of the OECD Model Convention.
  • Critically evaluate and discuss key EU measures in the area of direct taxation.
  • Critically evaluate and discuss key jurisprudence of the CJEU in the area of direct taxation.
  • Assessment:

  • 2 Essays (2 x 3,000 word limit) – 100%
  • International Commercial Arbitration

    (LA7083) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Mr Barry Mansfield BL

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    The module explores arbitration as a means for resolving commercial disputes without recourse to the courts, particularly in an international context. The balancing of public policy considerations, such as party autonomy and access to justice, is traced through the legal framework for, and practice of, the resolution of commercial disputes by arbitration. The module compares and contrasts arbitration with litigation.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Identify and analyse the challenges posed by the out of court resolution of civil and commercial disputes;
  • Identify and analyse arbitration as a method of resolving civil and commercial disputes without recourse to the courts, particularly in an international context;
  • Appraise the advantages and disadvantages inherent in arbitration as a dispute resolution mechanism, particularly in contrast with litigation;
  • Apply critical analysis and problem-solving skills and techniques to arbitration as a dispute resolution mechanism; and
  • Discuss and debate perspectives on arbitration as a means of resolving commercial disputes.
  • Assessment: Research Paper (100%) - 6,000 words.

    International Economic Law

    (LA7007) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Mr T P Kennedy

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    International Economic Law concerns the legal rules relating to trade between states. The courses focuses on the organisations put in place to regulate economic relationships between states most notably, the World Trade Organisation and the international treaties, which it enforces such as the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade. The course examines trade in goods, services and the international regulation of intellectual property. Consideration is given to the international rules governing free trade such as most favoured nation status, national treatment rules and rules against tariff discrimination and other barriers to inter state trade. Defences to breaches of these rules will be looked at. Finally the negotiation of trade agreements and the rules relating to international trade disputes are reviewed.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Identify the essential characteristics of the rules of international trade and appreciate the tensions between a normative legal approach and state interest;
  • Explain the operations and functions of the World Trade Organisation;
  • Critically analyse the provisions of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade;
  • Analyse the methods used for resolving international trade disputes.
  • Assessment: Essay to be set on a topic during the modules.

    International Humanitarian Law

    (LA7072) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Mr Colin Smith BL

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    Warfare is as old as humanity itself, but as long as there has been war, there have been customary practices intended to limit the effects of violence for humanitarian reasons. In the last 150 years, States have agreed to codify these practices as international law. The body of rules now known as international humanitarian law (IHL) applies only in time of armed conflict or occupation. IHL aims to define the rights and obligations of the warring parties and to protect people who are not taking part in hostilities.

    This module is intended to familiarize students with the rules and principles of IHL as well as with the complex regime by which they are enforced. The module is divided across eleven teaching weeks, with two hours of lectures per week. The module begins with an introduction to IHL and to the law’s historical development. There follows an exploration of the sources of IHL and the scope of its application. The module then examines the protection that the law provides to the victims of both international and non-international armed conflicts. The focus here is on modern conflicts such as those taking place in Ukraine and Syria. The module will also address the limits established by the law on the means and methods of war which may be selected by belligerents in time of armed conflict. Students will have an opportunity to explore and discuss the implementation and enforcement of IHL by State and non-State actors, domestically and on the international stage. The module concludes with an analysis of the diverse challenges posed to IHL today.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Describe and assess the concept and purpose of IHL and the place of IHL in the corpus of general international law;
  • Identify and evaluate the source and scope of IHL;
  • Explain and apply the rules protecting victims of armed conflict;
  • Locate, apply and critically evaluate the rules governing the conduct of hostilities on land, at sea and in the air;
  • Compare and contrast the rules applicable in law of non-international armed conflicts with those applicable in international armed conflicts;
  • Describe and assess how IHL is implemented; and Identify and understand the contemporary challenges facing IHL.
  • Assessment:

  • The International Humanitarian Law module is assessed by way of an essay which makes up 100% of the student’s final mark for the module
  • Essay Topics: The essay must be a critical engagement with some area of international humanitarian law. Students are free to choose their own essay topic, subject to approval by the module lecturer. It is the topic and not the title which must be approved; provided the essay remains within the boundaries of the approved topic, students are permitted to choose the title at a later stage. Several pre-approved topics will be provided. Students are not limited to material covered in lectures and are welcome to speak to the lecturer after lectures to discuss topics.

    Length: The deadline will be advised at the start of term. The word limit for the essay is 5,000 words, including footnotes. This is a limit, not a suggestion. Marks may be deducted from students who exceed the word limit at a rate of one percentage point per 100 words or part thereof that the student exceeds the limit. A bibliography is not required.

    Style: In style, essays should conform to the Oxford Standard for the Citation of Legal Authorities (‘OSCOLA’), and in particular to the Citing International Law Sources Section of OSCOLA 2006, which is available here

    Format: In format, essays should be submitted in size 12 point Arial font, with footnotes in size 10 point. The text should be 1.5 spaced. Pages should be numbered. The first page of the essay should clearly state the title of the essay together with the student’s examination number.

    Submission: The deadline for submission will be the last Friday in Semester 1 Assessment Week. Submission will be through Turnitin. Students should familiarise themselves with Law School policy on marking penalties for late submission of coursework. Any extensions must be requested in advance by email to the lecturer.

    International Trade Law

    (LA7050) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Mr T P Kennedy

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

    International Trade Law draws on issues of International Economic Law and Public International Law. This module examines a number of controversial trade issues and considers the approach of law and regulation to them.

    The module commences with a consideration of the issue of development and the special rules applicable to developing nations. It then moves on to look at the issues surrounding international trade and agriculture, issues surrounding the regulation of international intellectual property, rules relating to foreign investment and the conflicts that can arise between international environmental law and international trade law.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Debate different theoretical and legal approaches to economic development and global inequality;
  • Evaluate the application of multilateral treaties to agriculture and the weakness of these treaties;
  • Identify the legal rules for the protection of intellectual property and varying levels of international application of these rules;
  • Explain international rules relating to international investment protection;
  • Critically analyse the tension between emerging international environmental legal norms and rules of international trade.
  • Assessment:

    There is a tutorial during the module where teams of students are asked to engage in a mock WTO negotiation round.  The tutorial may be provided in an online format.
    Students will be assessed on a combination of the written work submitted in advance of the tutorial and performance in the tutorial itself.

    Introduction to Cyber Security Law And Policy.

    (LA7135) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Maria Grazia Porcedda

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section B
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section B
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    LL.M. Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

    * Priority will be given to students registered for the LL.M (Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law) degree programme. Any available places will be offered to students on other LLM programmes in late September 2022.

    Network and information technologies have taken centre stage in economic growth, the fight against crime, defence and diplomacy. This is why cyber security is now regarded as essential for discharging the duties of the state and the endeavours of economic and civil society actors. However, cyber security means different things to different jurisdictions, and even to different interest groups within single jurisdictions. It can mean any or all of the following: information security, the mitigation of data breaches, protection against cybercrime, resilience from cybercrime, the confidentiality of communications, the preservation of evidence, cyber peace, defence from cyber war and the acquisition of civilian and military cyber capabilities. Such broad understanding of cyber security is reflected in fragmented national and regional legal frameworks. International law offers solutions of limited reach due to political disagreements. The Convention on Cybercrime has not been signed by all members of the Council of Europe. Members of the United Nations are working towards a ‘Comprehensive International Convention on Countering the Use of Information and Communications Technologies for Criminal Purposes’, making this a very lively area of IT law to research and study. The course will focus on the laws adopted in the areas of network and information security, privacy and data protection, cybercrime, cyber peace and cyber war and the most recent political developments at the regional and international level.

    The classes will feature a combination of lectures, invited lectures, seminar-style debates and group presentations, allowing for the analysis of the legal frameworks and the discussion of case law and policy documents. Participants will cover a broad range of regional and international legal instruments, including soft law, having a bearing on network and information security, privacy and data protection, cybercrime and cyber peace/war. These include, but are not limited to relevant international standards, the Council of Europe Convention on Cybercrime (Budapest Convention) and its Additional Protocols, European Union instruments such as the Network and Information Systems Directive, the Cybersecurity Act and the EU General Data Protection Regulation and any new instruments as may arise. Students will gain the necessary knowledge to appraise the effectiveness of such instruments and their interaction. The course further aims to enable students to identify trends in political approaches to cyber security as they unfold and analyse current policy developments.

    Learning Outcomes

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Understand the different meanings of cyber security and the scope of cyber security-related law and policy.
  • Identify relevant sources of primary and secondary law.
  • Apply the relevant bodies of law to each sub-area of cyber security.
  • Comprehend relevant regional instruments, which include but are not limited to the Budapest Convention and its Additional Protocols.
  • Appreciate the impact of technological, economic and political developments on cyber security law and policy.
  • Appraise the tensions between areas of cyber security policy and the effectiveness of applicable laws.
  • Critique the key authors in the field.
  • Write critically on the subject.
  • Assessment:

  • 5%: Participation (pass = 100/ fail = 0)
  • 75%: Written Assignment (coursework)
  • 20%: Group Presentation
  • Islamic Law

    (LA7065) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Professor Neville Cox BL

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    With the increasing Islamic population both in Ireland and globally, the study of Islamic law is both timely and interesting. In this module, we consider first the sources and history of Sharia law and the implications of the operation of a system which derives its authority from an omnipotent and infallible God. We also consider the geographical reach of Islamic law and the various ways in which it is applied in different jurisdictions. We then turn to consider two ‘hot topics’ in so far as Islamic law is concerned namely the relationship between Islamic law and modern conceptions of International Human Rights and, more briefly, the concept of Islamic finance, that is, the efforts to try to create new and innovative methods of engaging in global commerce which are compliant with Sharia Law.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Critically assess the sources and history and nature of Islamic Law;
  • Identify and critically examine the legal issues arising in respect of a range of factual scenarios connected to the application of Islamic Law within the field of international law;
  • Identify and evaluate the interplay between Islamic Law and International Human Rights Law;
  • Appraise and evaluate the difficulties emerging from the operation of Islamic Finance Law;
  • Apply critical analysis and problem-solving skills and techniques to different essay questions based on material covered in the module.
  • Assessment:

  • Essay 3,000 words - 50%
  • Position Paper 2,000 words - 40%
  • Participation in Online Discussion Forum (Blackboard) - 10%
  • Judging in Apex Courts: International and Comparative Perspectives.

    (LA74144) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr. David Kenny & Frank Clarke (Former Chief Justice of Ireland)

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    This module will explore, from academic and practical perspectives, the art and practice of judging and judicial decision-making. Its focus will be international and comparative, looking at courts from around the world. While various courts will be considered and discussed, in framing discussion and reading, It will pay particular attention to judging in public law matters and to the courts of the EU and Council of Europe, as well as the Supreme Court of Ireland and other common law jurisdictions. The module will be co-taught, with both lecturers leading and contributing to class discussion in each seminar and students expected to participate on the basis of reading done in advance.

    One of the lecturers, having a strong academic interest in comparative judging and the processes around it, will approach the topic from an academic angle. The other, having experience of judging in an apex general court, as well as interaction with international judicial bodies at the highest level, will share practical and experiential as well as academic insights on these processes.

    The aim of the module is to enable students to think conceptually and practically about judging as a legal and social practice, assisted through a consideration of examples drawn from different jurisdictions, academic argument, and practical reflection. At the end of the module, students will complete an independent research essay, on a topic approved by the lecturers, that explores in detail some topic covered in or suggested by the module.

    The topics of the seminars will include:

    • 1. Philosophies of judging
    • 2. Judging in the common law vs civil law tradition
    • 3. Judicial appointments to apex courts
    • 4. Structure of apex courts and their independence
    • 5. International/transnational apex courts
    • 6. How courts decide: judicial processes and their consequences
    • 7. Writing judgments/making decisions
    • 8. The “genre” of judicial writing
    • 9. Formal judicial cooperation across legal orders
    • 10. Informal judicial cooperation and use of foreign law
    • 11. The judicial mind and the politics of judging

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

    • To formulate their own account of the nature of judging in apex courts
    • To understand the benefits and risks of different methods of judicial appointment and removal
    • To critically assess the differences and similarities between national and transitional apex courts and their respective roles
    • To identity issues judges face in interpretation, writing, and deciding
    • To assess critically the uses and limits of international judicial dialogue and cooperation, including in use of foreign law
    • To critically assess different modes of judicial decision-making, and how this shapes the narratives that grow up around judging
    • To engage in comparative research and writing on judicial methods, structures, and/or philosophies.

    Assessment:

  • Essay 5,000 words (including footnotes) - 75%.
  • Online discussion participation (graded for substance) – 20%
  • Class attendance - 5%
  • Judicial Review and Human Rights: Theory and Practice

    (LA7066) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Alan D.P. Brady BL

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    This module examines the role played by the courts in protecting, promoting and defining human rights in domestic legal systems. Most common law jurisdictions provide for litigable human rights through constitutions or other fundamental rights documents. In many instances these rights can be asserted against primary legislation as well as executive or administrative decisions. The judiciary are charged with the task of deciding these specialised disputes between the individual and the state. (For the purposes of this course, the term ‘judicial review’ is given its broad definition which includes challenges to legislation as well as administrative decisions). Human rights adjudication gives rise to numerous theoretical and practical issues of law and politics, which are discussed in this course. Key issues addressed include:

  • The desirability and dangers of 'judicialisation' of human rights;
  • The relationship between the courts and other branches of government in the context of human rights protection;
  • The consequences of a finding that government action violates human rights;
  • The role that the judiciary play in promoting a 'human rights culture' Obstacles for human rights litigants.
  • Throughout this module, a critical approach is taken to the appropriateness and efficacy of placing the courts process and the judiciary at the centre of human rights protection. The course draws on sources from common law jurisdictions, including Ireland, the UK and Canada. While there are no formal perquisites for taking this course, students are expected to be familiar with the constitutional law of at least one jurisdiction

    Module Pre Requisite: Students must have previously studied the constitutional law of at least one common law State.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Describe and analyse the role played by judicial review in the broader political context of human rights guarantees;
  • Explain and appraise the merits and disadvantages of the systems of judicial review in operation in various common law jurisdictions;
  • Evaluate the leading constitutional debates on the subject of rights-based judicial review;
  • Critically evaluate the practice of rights-based judicial review from the perspective of constitutional theory and institutional design;
  • Categorise and discuss the practical effects produced by the operation of the practice of judicial review and the practical experiences of litigants.
  • Assessment:

  • Essay (5,500 words) - 95% of each student’s final mark for this module.
  • Participation in online discussions through Blackboard - 5%. Students will need to make a minimum of one substantive contribution per week to obtain these marks.
  • Law and Risk

    (LA7118) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Suryapratim Roy

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    The word ‘risk’ is now everywhere. Whether one considers media reports, regulatory decisions or commercial transactions, there is inevitably mention of some form of risk: climate risk, credit risk, health risk, security risk, risks of migration. Such references are accompanied by actions taken by agents in different professional and governing capacities: risk assessment, risk communication, risk management, mitigation of risk. This is especially true for the European regulatory space, where ‘risk’ is ubiquitous. The governance of danger, however, is surely not a recent development. What, then, has changed? It is time to take a step back, explore the concept of risk and how it may be governed.

    Given recent concerns brought about by COVID-19, the effective handling of risk has brought about an additional concern – could emergency powers be invoked to regulate risk while diluting democracy and the Rule of Law in the process?

    The governance of risk balances a fundamental tension between the danger of the unknown on one hand, and the ability to anticipate and control the unknown on the other. Institutionalising the anticipation and control of the unknown requires hard theoretical, political and technical choices. This module concentrates on how law shapes and responds to the prevalence of risk in private and public decisions. Given the array of legal tools to deal with risk, the module will cover conventional approaches such as command-and-control regulation as well as more recent approaches derived from Behavioural Law & Economics. This module will engage with some central themes of risk regulation, and allow the participants to analyse aspects of risk in their chosen areas of inquiry such as financial law, environmental law and health law.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Have a grasp on the legal principles that guide risk regulation, such as the precautionary principle and the proportionality principle;
  • Approach legal principles from perspectives found in other disciplines. In the bargain, students would appreciate the distinction between normative questions and empirical questions;
  • Pursue a practical interest in institutional engagement with risk and/or theoretical inquiry in the relationship between law and risk.
  • Assessment:

    Review (30%)

    Choice between a book review, a response to an article or a case note of around 3000 words (30%). The subject could be a legal or non-legal text. If it is a non-legal text, students would be expected to analyse the subject using legal concepts and tools. Students may also review fiction, but then the review must tease out what the author is trying to say (or has the luxury to avoid saying) about a non-fiction world.

    If you like a book that's not there in the library, then I can try and convince the library to get it. I would recommend students to purchase the subject of review. If you intimately read a work, it is good to have this item in your collection.

    It is suggested that the first draft be submitted around the middle of the term. The date for submission of final draft will be specified during the term. You must use the standard law school assignment cover sheet with its anti-plagiarism declaration for the final submission.

    Essay (70%)
    Proposal for Essay: Students must submit a proposal of their interests about a potential subject for their essay (10%). This needs to be submitted by the end of the Reading Week. This will be distributed to a specific student serving as a Discussant for the presentation.  I have nothing against the essay having an empirical component, with three caveats: (1) I am not an expert in advanced statistics,; (2) empirical research takes time and resources; and (3) you would need to secure an ethics approval from the College before conducting empirical work, and this takes time. Should you have conducted empirical work (or are conducting empirical work for your Masters thesis), or are particularly interested in a particular line of empirical inquiry, I would recommend concentrating on how such empirical work could be used for legal decisions or policy recommendations in this module.

    Oral/Online Presentation of preliminary draft of Essay: Presentation of a preliminary draft of essay + Discussion of a proposal by another student in class (10%) will take place after the reading week, to allow enough time for revision before submission of Final Essay. Depending on the choice of topics, I will seek to pair students on similar themes. The presentations begin one week after the Reading Week.

    Final Essay: Final Essays of around 3,500 - 4,000 words should be submitted individually (50%). The date for submissions will be specified during term.

    Legal Issues in Sustainable Finance

    (LA7137) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Felix Mezzanotte

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A

    Priority will be given to students registered for the LL.M (International and European Business Law) and MSc Law and Finance degree programmes. Any available places will be offered to students on other LLM programmes in late September 2021.

    The aim of this module is to provide students with specialised knowledge and understanding of key legal issues involved in sustainable finance policy, an area of policy that has become of paramount importance in both Europe and internationally. Students registering to this module show interest in sustainability issues, in general, and in the interplay of law, finance and sustainability, in particular.

    After introducing students to the aims of sustainable finance policy, the first part of the module will develop basic terminology including sustainability risk, impact and preferences. Institutions, markets and products shaping the progress of sustainable finance will also be examined. The second part of the module consecrates to the fiduciary role of investment services providers in terms of acting in the best interest of the clients and exercising stewardship functions including voting in shareholders general meeting. This part also conceptualises a pressing problem in sustainable finance, notably ‘greenwashing’. Private and public enforcement tools have been used to tackle greenwashing and such tools will be identified and examined. The third part of the module looks at information disclosure obligations. These rules constitute the foundations of EU sustainable finance law and regulation, including the Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive, Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation, EU Taxonomy Regulation.

    Although the content taught in this module will orbit around EU sustainable finance law and policy, the various subjects under consideration and discussion typically find source and application across countries, legal systems and academic disciplines.

    This module will equip students to address sustainability issues in a professional, expert manner. Student taking this module will not only satisfy their eagerness to learn and engage in exciting and innovative topics but also boost their job prospects among relevant actors in the sustainability ecosystem including corporations, government, financial institutions, NGOs and international organisations, among others.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

    • Describe and evaluate key concepts, principles of sustainable finance at the level of law, regulation and policy.
    • Critically analyse problems in sustainable finance and the interplay of various relevant disciplines including law, environment, society and finance.
    • Communicate ideas, opinions and findings effectively in oral and written modes.
    • Conduct research and reading independently to address specific problems and questions in sustainable finance.

    Assessment:

  • Essay (5,000 words) - 90%
  • Class participation - 10%.
  • Mergers and Acquisitions

    (LA7128) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr. Alexandros L. Seretakis

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A

    * Priority will be given to students registered for the LL.M (International and European Business Law) and MSc Law and Finance degree programmes.  Any available places will be offered to students on other LLM programmes in late September 2021.



    The continuous growth of the financial sector and its ability to channel large amounts of funds in a short time and the quest of companies for global expansions have led to the constant rise of merger and acquisition (M&A) activity. The total value of global dealmaking exceeded 3 trillion dollars in 2017. While North America still accounts for 44% of global M&A volume, Europe has been witnessing an exponential increase in M&A activity with European activity reaching 27% of total dealmaking. The aim of this module is to equip students with a sound understanding of the business drivers of M&A transactions and the legal regime governing them. The module will predominantly focus on the European and Irish M&A landscape. Topics covered include the market for corporate control, domestic and cross-border mergers and their regulation in the E.U., takeover regulation in the E.U. and Ireland and takeover defense tactics. The module will also include practitioner talks.

    Learning Outcomes

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Understand the business drivers and sources of value creation of M&A transactions.
  • Assess the regulation of domestic and cross-border mergers and takeovers in the EU and Ireland.
  • Critically evaluate the benefits and perils of hostile takeovers.
  • Assess the desirability of takeover defenses.
  • Assessment

  • Research Paper - 85%
  • Presentation - 15%
  • National Security Law

    (LA7126) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Eoin O’Connor

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    This module will explore the growth of national security law as a discipline, and in particular the rule of law and human rights concerns that are in tension. The course will have an international emphasis, with considerable examination of the UK, and other major common law countries’ experiences dealing with national security law issues. In addition, the module will examine Irish law and practice where it touches on national security law issues, and will include examination of evidentiary concepts including informer and public interest privilege that are invoked when national security considerations are at play.

    Some of the seminar topics will include:

  • National security and the courts. Consideration of informer privilege and public interest immunity. Comparative analysis of the Closed Material Procedure in the UK.
  • National security and legislation - examination of legislation which has placed on national security issues on a statutory basis.
  • National security and immigration – examination of whether the State can expel a person on the basis of a threat to national security without providing details of same to the person concerned. Comparative analysis of UK and Irish approaches to this issue, and how the ECtHR has dealt with same.
  • Coercive or enhanced interrogation and intelligence sharing. What is the legal position, and what are limits on the use of such intelligence? Comparative approach to the UK position.
  • National security and Ireland. Examination of the use of informers, the Special Criminal Court and the Witness Protection Programme.
  • Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Identify and critically analyse national security law concepts, doctrines and rules both orally and in writing;
  • Apply the law of national security in practical and theoretical settings;
  • Pinpoint and critically analyse international and comparative perspectives on national security law;
  • Develop theoretical and policy perspectives on the law of national security;
  • Assess the development of the law and formulate proposals for reform;
  • Conduct effective international, comparative and multidisciplinary research where relevant.
  • Assessment: Coursework (100%).

    The coursework will take the form of a 6,000 word independent research paper.

    Students will be expected to read materials in advance of class and to participate actively in class discussion. Some classes will involve individual and group student presentations.

    Regulation of Alternative Investment Funds

    (LA7127) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Alexandros Seretakis

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 2:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section B
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section A
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section B

    From Soros’ landmark bet against the British pound in 1992 to John Paulson’s big short against the US housing market in 2007, alternative investment funds have long attracted the covert admiration and suspicion of politicians, regulators and the public. The opaque nature of the alternative investment fund industry, its alleged role in major crises around the world and a perceived lack of investor protection have repeatedly led to calls for greater regulation of alternative investment funds.The aim of this module is to offer an introduction to the world of alternative investment funds, in particular hedge funds and private equity funds, and their regulation and equip students with a sound understanding of the business model of alternative investment funds and the regulatory regime governing them. The module will examine the benefits offered and the dangers posed by alternative investment funds and assess the rationales for their regulation. Furthermore, the course will focus on the regulation of alternative investment funds in the EU comparing the approach adopted by EU lawmakers with the one adopted by the US, the largest market for alternative investment funds. The module is designed for students interested in financial markets and the growing field of law and finance.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Understand the business model of alternative investment funds, most notably hedge funds and private equity funds.
  • Critically evaluate the benefits offered and the risks posed by alternative investment funds.
  • Assess the different regulatory regimes governing alternative investment funds in the EU and the US.
  • Appraise the effects of regulation on the alternative investment fund industry, financial stability and investor protection.
  • Comprehend the changing business and regulatory environment for alternative investment funds.
  • Further develop their interest in financial markets.
  • Assessment:

  • 5.000 world essay (incl. footnotes) - 85% of total mark.
  • Class presentation- 15% of total mark.
  • The assessment method is designed in order to enhance students’ research, writing and presentation skills and allow them to obtain in-depth knowledge of specific topics.

    Regulation of Cyberspeech

    (LA7133) 10 ECTS

    Lecturer: Dr Ewa Komorek

    This module is available on the following programmes in Semester 1:

    LL.M. Section A
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law Section A
    LL.M. International and European Business Law Section B
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law Section A

    *Priority will be given to students registered for the LL.M (Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law) and LL.M (International and Comparative Law) degree programmes. Any available places will be offered to students on other LLM programmes in September 2022.

    We are living in the age of information and expanding potential channels for expression. Nowadays, internet allows everyone to be content creator and as a result freedom of expression is wider than ever. However, with this great potential comes great risk and the limits of freedom of expression are being tested in new ways. While up until recently there was reluctance to regulate the internet in general and social media in particular, the present trends are increasingly shifting towards more and more regulation. Thus, the aim of the module is to challenge students to think about whether and how the law can be shaped and improved for the benefit of (digital) society.

    Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

  • Identify and assess the main issues and challenges connected with online expression;
  • Identify and evaluate the international, EU and national regulatory structures applicable to cyberspeech;
  • Critically assess the effectiveness of existing regulatory solutions and identify and evaluate areas for improvement;
  • Appraise the importance of promoting online media literacy and identify and assess the regulatory and self-regulatory initiatives in this area;
  • Apply critical analysis and problem-solving skills to questions relating to regulation of cyber-speech.

  • Assessment:

  • 95% essay (5,500 word limit) on a topic selected by a student from the range of topics discussed.
  • 5% Blackboard participation.
  • LL.M Dissertation

    (LA7047) 30 ECTS

    The research dissertation is mandatory on the following programmes All year:

    LL.M.  
    LL.M. International and Comparative Law  
    LL.M. International and European Business Law  
    Intellectual Property and Information Technology Law  

    All candidates must complete a dissertation as part of their LL.M degree at Trinity. The total mark available for the dissertation counts for 33% of the LL.M degree or the equivalent of three modules.

    The dissertation is intended to be self-directed research with broad guidance given in the manner described below. Students are presented with a number of thematic groups, each led by an academic with a research interest in that broad area. Students will be able to choose a group based on the research dissertation that they wish to pursue, indicating a number of preferences. They will be assigned into groups on a first-come, first-served basis. The dissertation groups, including all students and the academic leader, will meet, in-person or virtually, on three occasions during the first semester and three occasions during the second semester. All students will be provided with a general introductory lecture at the beginning of each of the two semesters. The academic leader will provide individual feedback on the research plan, a sample of writing and the final plan for the dissertation. In the dissertation groups, students will make presentations of their work and provide feedback to one another, facilitated by the academic leader. The academic leader will, in consultation with the students, assign them into sub-groups of three or four to facilitate peer-to-peer learning and mutual support outside the classroom.

    There will be an opportunity for one individual meeting with the academic leader during May to review progress on the dissertation.

    The word limit for the dissertation is 15,000 words, including footnotes, and must be submitted by 28th June 2022.

    Module Learning Outcomes:

    On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

  • Complete a substantial dissertation based on independent, largely self-directed research.
  • Work effectively under the guidance of a research academic leader and collaborate within themed workgroups.
  • Conduct effective and targeted research of the full range of primary and secondary legal sources on a particular topic.
  • Critically assess in writing legal theories, concepts and doctrines.
  • Discuss and critique in writing different perspectives on law.
  • Determine the scope and structure of a research project and establish a viable research plan.
  • Identify, discuss and debate various research methodologies.
  • Present arguments in a coherent manner written in a clear style and a coherent conclusion that follows correctly from the analysis.
  • Module Aims:

    The aim of this module is to encourage students to engage in largely self-driven research and writing leading to the completion of an analytical and critical piece of research. While students are proceeding under the direction of an academic leader who is a member of the Law School staff, to successfully complete the dissertation, a student should be capable of carrying out independent research and writing and working in a timely fashion in order to meet the deadline for submission of the dissertation.

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