David O'Keeffe (academic)

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David O'Keeffe is Emeritus Professor of European Law in the University of London and a part-time European administrative law judge. He is Senior Counsel of the world's largest law firm Dentons.[1]Together with an academic career, he practiced EU law since 1984 with Coudert Brothers, Hammonds and Salans. He is one of the leading theoreticians of European Union law. His writings are influential outside the EU.

He was Professor of European Law at University College London (1993–2004) and Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Laws.[2] He was Professor of European Law and head of the Department of Law, University of Durham 1990-1993, and a Governor of Trevelyan College, University of Durham.[2] He was a visiting professor at numerous Universities including University College Dublin[2] (Ireland), the University of Siena and the College of Europe in Bruges and Warsaw.[3]

He is best known for his large volume of published work in two very different areas. The larger and earlier part of the corpus concerned the law concerning migrant workers in the EU and European Social Law. He was a member of the High Level Panel on the Free Movement of Workers established by the European Commission,[4] chaired by Simone Veil. He was Vice-Chairman of the panel chaired by Lord Templeman culminating in a Report on immigration in the UK.[2]

His research also focused on EU internal market and State aid law. He published important innovative work on EU State aid law, EU public procurement law and UK public private partnerships.

As a professor, he was also an academic organizer and administrator, establishing permanent centers for research and teaching on European Union law: the Durham European Law Institute (University of Durham, U.K.) and the Centre for the Law of the European Union (University College London).[2]

He was the coordinator of numerous major international research projects[5] and international conferences. He co-founded the Irish Forum for European Law.[6] He was secretary of the United Kingdom Association for European Law.

He has written or edited over 200 academic publications specializing in EU law.[3]

He was also a co-founding editor and joint editor of the European Foreign Affairs Review.[7] He is a member of the editorial, advisory or scientific boards of a large number of journals specializing in EU Law including 20 years as an editor of the Common Market Law Review. He was Editor-in-Chief of the European Monograph book series.

Amongst the works with which he is most associated are Legal Issues of the Maastricht Treaty (Chancery Law Publishing, 1994) and Legal Issues of the Amsterdam Treaty (Hart, 1999).

He gave evidence to committees of the European Parliament, most recently to the Internal Market Committee (expert report and oral evidence), and to the House of Lords on EU matters. He advised the Netherlands Government on certain aspects of the Maastricht Treaty during the Netherlands Presidency. He was also an advisor to the European Ombudsman.[2]

He practises law and pleads before the European General Court (formerly known as the Court of First Instance) and the European Court of Justice.[2][8] His cases include the Eurojust case, of constitutional significance,[9] as well as cases such as the Acron appeal to the European Court of Justice,[10] the Dynamo-Minsk sanctions case [11] the well-known Mediaset case [12] and the Cascades case.[13]

In 2008, he was appointed by the EU Member States to chair the Appeals Tribunal of the European University, an administrative law body established by international treaty exercising supranational judicial functions.[14]

He was previously a member for 6 years of the judicial Conciliation Committee of the European Space Agency.

He has been honored for academic contribution to European integration, and is a member of the Constantinian Order.


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