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European Union  

A guide to researching the law of the EU.
Last Updated: May 11, 2017 URL: http://libguides.ials.sas.ac.uk/eu Print Guide RSS Updates
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Last updated:

Hester Swift, June 2014

 

About the author

This guide was created by Hester Swift, Foreign & International Law Librarian at the IALS Library.

Click here for Hester's full profile and contact details.

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    Introduction

    The European Union (EU) developed from the three European Communities which were founded in the 1950s: the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC), the European Economic Community (EEC) and the European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom). It became the 'European Union' under the Maastricht Treaty of 1992; this treaty provided that the European Communities should remain in existence as part of the EU and changed the name of the European Economic Community to 'European Community' (EC). 

    The Coal and Steel Community was wound up in 2002 and the European Community ceased to exist when it was subsumed into the European Union in December 2009, under the Treaty of Lisbon. Euratom is still going, however.

    From the original six member states of the 1950s, the EU has grown to a total of twenty-eight member states today.The UK joined in 1973, but gave notice on 29 March 2017 that it is going to leave. 

    The EU has its own courts: the Court of Justice and the General Court (formerly 'Court of First Instance'). From 2004 until September 2016, it also had a third court, the Civil Service Tribunal, but this body has been dissolved and its jurisdiction has been transferred to the General Court.

    The main legislative and policy-making bodies of the European Union are the Council of the European Union (also known as the 'Council of Ministers'), the European Parliament and the European Commission. The EU official publisher is the Publications Office of the European Union.

    The Institute of Advanced Legal Studies Library has a substantial collection of European Union material of legal interest, from the 1950s to the present day. It is not, however, an EU depository; larger collections of EU official publications can be found at EU Documentation Centres (EDCs). The nearest EDC is at the London School of Economics Library (British Library of Political and Economic Science).

    At IALS, the EU collection is kept on the third floor, with some additional material is in the Short Loan Collection on the fourth floor, or in the basement Reserve. Several databases containing EU information are also available.

     

    The Official Journal

    The Official Journal of the European Union is the EU’s official gazette, in which it publishes legislation and other official documents. It is usually referred to as the 'OJ'.

    The Official Journal began life as the European Coal and Steel Community's gazette, the Journal officiel de la Communauté Européene du charbon et de l'acier (1952-58), then became gazette of all the European Communities, the Journal officiel des Communautés européennes. The English edition, the Official Journal of the European Communities, began in 1973;  it changed its name in February 2003, to Official Journal of the European Union.

    The printed OJ used to be the only authentic source of EU legislation, but the online version was given authentic status from 1 July 2013 onwards. The print edition ceased publication at the end of 2013.                                                                                                                                                                        

    OJ series and sub-series
    There are two main series of the Official Journal, 'L' and 'C', plus the public procurement supplement: -

    • Official Journal of the European Communities / European Union: Legislation, known as the 'L Series', 1968 onwards; online-only from January 2014 onwards, via EUR-Lex. Publishes secondary legislation (directives, regulations and so on) and some primary legislation. An irregular 'LI' subseries was introduced in January 2016 (not listed separately on EUR-Lex, but found among the main L series issues). 
    • Official Journal of the European Communities / European Union: Information and Notices, known as the 'C series' (from the French sub-title, Communications et Informations), 1968 onwards; online-only from January 2014 onwards, via EUR-Lex.The C series publishes most primary legislation (the Treaties), preparatory legislative documents, European Parliament minutes, case summaries and other documents.

              Subseries: some issues of the OJ C have 'E', 'A' or 'I' after the issue number, e.g. OJ C 183E

      • OJ C E subseries (31 August 1999 to 28 March 2014); this electronic-only subseries was an online supplement to the printed OJ C (the 'E' stands for 'electronic'); it published documents such as European Parliament minutes and Council common positions; the CE subseries was no longer required once the entire OJ was online-only, though it continuted to appear for a few months after this point.
      • OJ CA subseries: publishes notices such as job advertisements
      • OJ CI subseries: introduced in January 2016, 'CI' issues are published occasionally when a change is needed to the planned content of the OJ C.

    The CE, CI and CA issues of the Official Journal are not listed separately on EUR-Lex, but are scattered through the main C series.

    • Official Journal of the European Communities / European Union: Supplement (sometimes known as the 'S series'), 1978 onwards; online-only, via Tenders Electronic Dailyfrom July 1998 onwards. Consists of public procurement notices.                        

    Originally there was only one series of the Official Journal, which was known first as the 'A Series', from 1952 to 1958, then as the 'P Series', from April 1958 to 1967.                                                                                                                                               

    Official Journal references usually follow the pattern OJ L 12, 16.1.2001 p. 1–23 or OJ C 70, 27.3.2007 p. 9-12.  However, documents published in the C series sometimes have references in the form '2000/C 264/03' - this means OJ C, 2000, issue 264, item three (not page three).

     

    Print and microfiche holdings at IALS
    IALS holds the entire Official Journal (except the S Series) from 1952 to 2013, when it ceased print publication:-

     

    English edition   

    L Series 1973 to 2013 in print; 1973 to 1995 on microfiche 

    C Series 1996 to 2013 in print; 1973 to 1995 on microfiche

     

    Official Journal of the European Communities: special edition (English translations of laws in force when
    the UK and Ireland joined)

     

    French edition  

     

    Journal officiel de la Communauté Européene du charbon et de l'acier / des Communautés européennes / de l'Union européenne,1958 to 2008 (single series 1952-78, L & C series 1968 onwards; microfiche only 1978-2008).

     

     

    Online sources
    The Official Journal is available on the European Union's EUR-Lex website from the start, in 1952, up to the latest issues (except the S series). EUR-Lex is the only source of the authentic electronic OJ that was launched in July 2013 (earlier online issues do not have authentic status - the print edition was the official version during this period). 

    The OJ S (Supplement), which publishes public procurement notices, is available on Tenders Electronic Daily (TED). Current notices are available to all and registered users of TED may also access a five-year archive. 

    Justis Celex, Westlaw UK and Lexis®Library all include the contents of the L Series (that is, EU legislation) back to 1952, as individual documents, not arranged in the form of journal issues. IALS subscribes to all three databases - see Electronic Law Library

    Westlaw UK has documents published in the C Series back to about 1980, plus a few 1970s documents (all come under 'Information and Notices' on the EU page). Justis has OJ C documents from 1990 onwards; Lexis®Library has them back to 2000 (under 'EU Materials').

     

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    Primary legislation

    The EU's primary legislation consists of treaties concerning the structure and functions of the EU, plus the accession treaties admitting new member states. The Treaties page of EUR-Lex is the most convenient source of these instruments; it includes both the original versions and consolidated amended versions of the key treaties (Treaty of Rome, Maastricht Treaty and so on).

    The founding treaties were:

    • Treaty Establishing the European Coal and Steel Community  (ECSC) - signed in 1951, in force 1952, expired 2002
    • Treaty Establishing the European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom) - signed in 1957, in force 1958
    • Treaty Establishing the European Economic Community (EEC) - signed in 1957, in force 1958. Renamed Treaty Establishing the European Community (EC Treaty, or TEC) as from November 1993, then renamedTreaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) as from December 2009. Traditionally known as the 'Treaty of Rome'. The articles of this treaty have been renumbered twice, by the Treaties of Amsterdam and Lisbon; article-number conversion tables are annexed to the Amsterdam and Lisbon treaties; a table combining both sets of changes is available on the OUP website.
    • Treaty on European Union (Maastricht Treaty), signed in 1992, in force 1993. Founded the European Union and transformed the European Economic Community (EEC) into the European Community (EC). Sometimes known as 'the EU Treaty', or 'TEU'.  The Treaties of Amsterdam and Lisbon renumbered the articles of this treaty as well as those of the Treaty of Rome (see above).

    Other primary legislation includes the Single European Act (1986), the Treaty of Amsterdam (1997) and the Treaty of Lisbon (2007). Lisbon came into force on 1 December 2009; the Legislation Summaries section of EUR-Lex has further details.

    Original text: except for founding treaties of the 1950s, the treaties are published in the Official Journal; most of them are in the C series, but a few have appeared in the L series. All the treaties are available on EUR-Lex (including the founding treaties); they are also on Westlaw UK, Lexis®LIbrary and Justis Celex.

    The EU treaties also appear in the UK Treaty Series (IALS classmark FOL SG40.J.5).

     

    Consolidated textthe latest consolidations of the Treaty on European Union and Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union appeared in Official Journal C 202, 07.06.2016; earlier consolidations have also been published in the OJ C series.

    Consolidated editions of the key treaties have also been produced by the EU Publications Office as monographs over the years, under various titles, such as European Union: selected instruments taken from the treaties and Consolidated versions of the Treaty on European Union and the Treaty establishing the European Community. IALS has many of these compilations.

    Other consolidated versions include Blackstone's EU treaties & legislation, published annually by Oxford University Press, and the looseleaf, Smit & Herzog on the law of the European Union (LexisNexis Matthew Bender, 2005 - ). Both titles are held at IALS.



     

    Secondary legislation

    The main types of secondary legislation are directives, regulations and decisions. Their reference numbers take the following forms:

    • Directives: year/number, for example, Council Directive 1999/31/EC of 26 April 1999 on the landfill of waste
    • Regulations: number/year, for example, Regulation (EC) no. 6/2002...on Community designs
    • Decisions: year/number, for example, 85/648/EEC, Council Decision of 19 December 1985 on import quotas

    Two-digit years were used in these reference numbers until 1999.  

    Printed sources
    Original: until 1 July 2013, the official source of secondary legislation is the printed edition of the Official Journal of the European Union. As mentioned above, IALS has the Official Journal in both English and French, including the English Special Edition (the latter is a collection of secondary legislation in force when the UK and Ireland joined the European Communities in 1973, translated into English).

    Consolidated:  IALS sources include Blackstone's EU treaties & legislation, which includes a  selection of consolidated secondary legislation. We also have subject-based collections, such as Blackstone's UK and EC Competition Documents (see Catalogue for other titles).

    Online sources 
    All secondary legislation is available on the EU’s own EUR-Lex website. From 1 July 2013, the online OJ is the official authentic source of EU legislation. 

    Consolidated versions of secondary legislation, incorporating amendments, are available on EUR-Lex.However, the latest consolidation is not always up-to-date. To check, click on the title of the original instrument (the one with an 'OJ L' reference) in your list of EUR-Lex search results, then look at the 'Linked Documents' tab to see if there have been further amendments since the latest consolidation. In the example below, the latest consolidation of Directive 2008/48 dated from 5 December 2011 at the time of writing, but the Directive had since been amended again:-

    EURLex linked documents tab for Directive 2008/48

    If the list of amendments for the instrument you are researching says 'Repealed',  but the repeal date is not given, check the 'End of Validity' date (on the 'All' tab), as it might be a prospective repeal. To be completely thorough, you should also check the text of the repealing instrument in case there are savings and/or transitional provisions.  

    All secondary legislation is also on Westlaw, Justis and Lexis®Library, via the IALS Electronic Law Library.  Lexis has consolidated versions as well as the original text, but Justis and Westlaw only have the original (with lists of amendments).

     

    Tracking the legislative process
    To check the progress of ongoing EU legislation, see Legislative Procedures on EUR-Lex (the contents of the Commission's PreLex database have been integrated into EUR-Lex here). See also the European Parliament’s Legislative Observatory (or 'OEIL'), which also tracks the progress of legislation. EUR-Lex and OEIL list the completed or ongoing stages of the legislative procedure and give links to associated documents, for example committee reports, common positions and press releases. It is best to check both sources, as one may be more up-to-date than the other.  

     

    Implementation of directives
    Directives are an indirect form of legislation: each member state has to implement them in its own law. The UK normally implements directives by means of statutory instruments, although occasionally an act of Parliament is used.

    Details of implementing legislation are given on EUR-Lex, Westlaw and Justis, but not on Lexis®Library. On EUR-Lex, search for the original (Official Journal) version of the directive and open the 'NIM' ('National Implementing Measures' tab. On Westlaw, find the directive, then click on 'National Measures'; on Justis, find the directive then click on 'Implementing SIs'. 

    If EUR-Lex has no implementation details for a particular member state, do not assume it has not been implemented, but double-check using the following sources (available at IALS):

    • European Current Law (see Digests, below) - lists implementing legislation for all member states.
    • EU Legislation Implementator (part of Halsbury’s Statutory Instruments) - UK implementation only.
    • The web domain of the member state, for example .gov.uk or .de. This is especially useful for very recent or forthcoming implementation, information about which may be posted on the website of the government department responsible. 
    • The EU's N-Lex service can be used to search the national legislation websites of the member states for implementing measures; it provides a multi-lingual thesaurus which can be used to translate terms. 
    • Commercial Laws of Europe reproduces selected laws of EU member states, in translation, with an emphasis on those implementing EU directives. Some of the annual volumes have tables of implemented legislation, but these are not cumulative.

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    Law reports

    Almost all Court of Justice cases used to have two stages: the Advocate-General’s opinion, then the judgment (usually a few months later); however, in recent years about half of them do not have an opinion stage. Cases at the General Court / Court of First Instance) and Civil Service Tribunal only have one stage, the judgment, with one or two General Court exceptions (for example case T-51/89).

    EU case numbers have alphabetic prefixes to denote the court, for example:

    • ECJ:                              C-14/89  (Cour de justice)
    • CFI/General Court:       T-220/95 (Tribunal de première instance)
    • Civil Service Tribunal:   F-14/06   (Tribunal de la fonction publique)

    Until 1989, when there was only one court, the Court of Justice, case numbers consisted simply of a number and the year, for example 290/84.

     

    Printed sources
    The official series of EU law reports is Reports of Cases before the Court of Justice and the Court of First Instance, usually known as the 'European Court Reports' (ECR). The print edition covers cases heard from 1954 to 2011; it ceased publication in Spring 2014, after the last volume of 2011 cases came out. The ECR is now published in an official online-onlyversion.

    From 1994 until the end of August 2016, there was a sub-series of reports called European Court Reports...Staff Cases (ECR-SC) It published cases concerning employees of EU institutions. It is held at IALS from 1994 to 2006. The print edition ceased publication with the 2009 volumes and it is online-only from 2010 to 2016.  

    Until mid-2004, the ECR published every case in full, in contrast to the UK's selective law reporting practice. Since 2004, less important cases - such as uncontested infringement proceedings - have been omitted, although brief details are given; the full report of these cases can be found on the Courts’ website, Curia and on EUR-Lex.

    After the creation of the Court of First Instance (now called the General Court) in 1989, the ECR was been divided into two sections:  Section I covered the ECJ and Section II the CFI. Citations took the form [1991] ECR II-469 (meaning 1991, part II, starting at page 469). The online-only ECR does not have separate sections for the two courts.

    Official case summaries are published in the Official Journal C series a few months after the judgment. 

    IALS has the entire English ECR,1954 to 2011. The title has changed over the years: Reports of cases before the Court of Justice of the European Coal and Steel Community, then Reports of cases before the Court, then Reports of Cases before the Court of Justice and the Court of First Instance.  IALS also has the French edition of the ECR, from 1954 to 2003 only; the German edition, from 1954 to 1998 part 2; the Dutch edition from 1954 to 1964; and the Italian edition from 1954 to 1964.

    Selected EU cases also appear in commercially-published series of law reports, often before they are available in the ECR. These series include the Common Market Law Reports (CMLR), European Commercial Cases (ECC), European Community Cases (CEC) and All England Law Reports: European Cases (All ER (EC)). IALS subscribes to all of these titles. ALL ER (EC) ceased publication in December 2015.

                                                                                                                                                                                    


    Electronic sources
    All EU cases are available on the website of the EU courts, Curia. This includes the online-only official edition of the European Court Reports. To search all cases, use the InfoCuria database on the Curia website; to browse the online-only ECR, click here and select 'Access to the online Reports of Cases'.

    Cases in the online-only ECR are cited using a reference called the European Case Law Identifier, or ECLI. For ECJ cases this takes the format EU:C:YYYY:NN and for General Court Cases EU:T:YYYY:NN. The original case number also forms part of the citation, for example: 

    Judgment of 4 May 2016. Commission v Austria, C-346/14, EU:C:2016:322

    ECLIs have also been retrospectively assigned to every EU case, right back to judgments from the 1950s. The EU now cites all cases, however old, using the ECLI rather than the old European Court Reports reference, but many commercial publications still use the ECR citation for older cases.

    Both pending and decided cases are covered by InfoCuria. The Curia website also provides numerical lists of all cases, with cross-references to joined cases and links to the full text of decisions and related documents. 

    The EUR-Lex website has all EU cases as well; it includes the online-only official ECR. EUR-Lex lists journal articles commenting on a given case, on the 'About this Document' tab attached to the case. 

    EU cases are also on Westlaw, Justis and Lexis®Library. However, Justis and Lexis omit those judgments that are not available in English (the ones that are not published in full in the ECR).

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    Competition decisions

    EU competition cases, such as antitrust investigations and merger scrutinies, are not usually dealt with by courts, but by the European Commission or national competition authorities.  

    Competition cases are assigned reference numbers, starting with prefixes such as 'IV', 'COMP',  'M' and so on, for example, IV/30.717, COMP/38.477, M.1537.

    Printed sources
    The Official Journal C Series publishes information about various stages of a competition case, for example, opinions of the Advisory Committee and decisions of the European Commission. The Official Journal L Series publishes some types of final competition decision, for example, Commission Decision of 5 December 2001 relating to a proceeding under Article 81 of the EC Treaty (Case IV/37.614/F3 PO/Interbrew and Alken-Maes), OJ L 200, 07.08.2003, p. 59-84.

    The Report on Competition Policy, published annually by the European Commission, is a survey of each year’s competition activities from 1971 to date. It includes some information about individual cases that is not published in the OJ: for example, it lists cases closed by “comfort letter” (a feature of the pre-May 2004 competition regime).  All the Reports are freely available on the EU's Competition website; IALS has the print edition from 1971 to 2008.

    Common Market Law Reports: Antitrust Reports, published by Sweet and Maxwell, reproduces Commission decisions, court decisions, notices and other documents.

    The EC Merger Control Reporter, a multi-volume looseleaf work (IALS Library's copy last updated in 2007), includes merger decisions with commentary, legislation, notices, guidelines, court decisions and agreements with non-EU parties (such as the United States). It has a chronological index and an index of party names. Kluwer, the publisher, has announced that it will cease publication in 2014. 

    Online sources
    The European Commission’s database of competition cases covers antitrust and cartel cases from January 1999 to date (plus some older information), merger cases from 21 September 1990 to date and state aid cases from 1 January 2000 onwards. It has links to competition decisions, press releases and other documents.

    The Commission's Competiton website provides an overview of competition policy, together with legislation, rules, guidelines and the annual Report on Competition Policy.

    EUR-Lex, Justis, Westlaw and Lexis®Library all include the OJ L and C, where competition notices and decisions are published (but it is probably better to start with the Commission's competition database, mentioned above).

    The European Competition Network coordinates enforcement of EC competition rules by the member states’ national competition authorities and the European Commission. Its website provides background information, legislation and links to the national competition authorities’ websites.

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    COM documents

    COM documents, often known as 'COM docs', are a series of publications produced by the European Commission for the attention of other EU institutions (such as the Council of the EU or the European Parliament). They have reference numbers prefixed 'COM' (standing for 'Commission'), for example, COM (2000) 529. They include numerous different types of publication, such as proposals for legislation, green papers, white papers and reports on the implementation of policy.  Printed COM documents ceased publication in April 2003; the series is now electronic-only, via EUR-Lex.

    Printed sources
    IALS holds some printed COM documents of legal interest. They are catalogued individually; most are kept at FOL GO1.A1.J.45, but a few are at different classmarks (see Catalogue).

    As well as being published separately, COM documents were reproduced in the Official Journal C Series until 2003. However, proposals for legislation - a particular type of COM doc - appear in the OJ C without the explanatory memorandum that is found in the original document.

    Online sources
    EUR-Lex has all COM documents from 1999 onwards, together with selected earlier ones. EUR-Lex has been the official source of COM docs since they ceased print publication in 2003. 

    Archive of European Integration: provided by the University of Pittsburgh, this website includes the full text of many COM documents which are too old to be found online elsewhere. It is particularly useful for green and white papers and well-known reports.

    Justis: the 'Proposals' section of the Justis Celex database includes all types of COM document, not just proposals.  They are available in full from around the mid-1990s onwards; before that, only brief details are given.

    Westlaw: includes the full text of COM documents from around the mid-1990s onwards, under 'Preparatory Acts'.

    Lexis®Library: COM documents are available from around the mid-1990s onwards, under 'EU Materials'  ('Preparatory Documents'). 

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    International agreements

    The EU makes agreements with non-EU countries and international organisations; it also makes agreements between its own member states. These agreements are a type of treaty, but should not be confused with the EU’s primary legislation, such as the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.

    Printed sources
    International agreements are published in the Official Journal L Series. Most of them also appear as UK command papers, in the Foreign Office's European Community/Communities/Union Treaty Series (IALS classmark FOL SG40.J.16) and/or the main UK Treaty Series (FOL SG40.J.5).

    Electronic sources
    For the fullest details of EU international agreements, including dates of entry into force, details of reservations (etc.) and the text of each agreement, see the Agreements Database provided by the Council of the European Union’s Treaty Office. The database covers all agreements since 1989, plus older agreements which are still in force and some important old agreements which are no longer in force; includes the quasi-constitutional treaties (primary legislation) as well as ordinary international agreements.


    EU international agreements, without status information, are also on EUR-Lex, Justis, Westlaw and Lexis.  On Justis, go to the EU screen, click on 'Data Sources', then select 'EU External Agreements'; on Westlaw's EU screen, international agreements come under 'Legislation'; on the Lexis®Library home page, use 'Find a Source' to find 'EU Materials', which includes international agreements.

    The European Commission’s Treaty Office also has an agreements database. The main differences from the Council's database are that the Commission's database excludes EU primary legislation and other agreements among EU member states, gives a summary of each agreement, as well as the full text and makes available various analytical lists ('ready inventories') of particular types of agreement (for example, all agreements which include a declaration of competence by the EU). 

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    Books

    IALS has a large collection of books on many different aspects of European Union law.  Most, but not all, are found on the third floor (refer to Catalogue).

    Recent titles include:

       Bellamy and Child: European Union law of competition, Vivien Rose and David Bailey (ed.s), OUP, 2013

       Steiner, J. and Woods, L., EU Law, 11th ed., OUP, 2012

    Petch, Tolek, Legal aspects of the Eurozone crisis, Slaughter and May, c2012

    Marín Durán, Gracia, Environmental integration in the EU's external relations: beyond multilateral dimensions, Hart, 2012

    Paschalidis, Paschalis, Freedom of establishment and private international law for corporations, OUP, 2012

    Nas, Çiğdem, Turkey and the European Union : processes of Europeanisation, Ashgate, 2012

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    Bibliographies

    ECLAS, the online catalogue of the European Commission Libraries, gives details of individual journal articles as well as monographs and serials.

    European Current Law (see below) has a bibliographical section.

    For bibliographies proper, see IALS classmark BG110; the most up-to-date title is the Court of Justice Library’s Legal bibliography of European integration (1981-1999).

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    Digests

    European Current Law, published by Sweet and Maxwell, provides monthly digests of selected EU legislation and case law, arranged by subject. It also lists journal articles, books, legislation, cases, competition decisions, implementing measures and other information. The monthly parts cumulate into yearbooks. IALS has the series from 1973 to 2013.

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    Journals

    The following are some of the journals in IALS Library which are specifically focused on EU or European law:

               Columbia Journal of European Law

    Common Market Law Review

    Europarecht               

    European Business Law Review            

    European Intellectual Property Review

    European Law Review

    European Public Law 

    Maastricht Journal of European and Comparative Law

    Revue trimestrielle de droit européen

    Some of these titles are available online as well as in printed format; there are links to the online versions from the Library Catalogue.

    Of course, a great many other journals also publish articles on EU law. To conduct a thorough literature search, use the following databases:

    • Westlaw UK's Journals screen, which covers journals published in the UK and English-language journals published on the Continent; about a tenth of the 800 journals covered by Westlaw UK are available in full; abstracts are available for the rest.
    • ECLAS, the European Commission Libraries' catalogue, a free web resource which indexes journal articles on EU matters
    • Index to Foreign Legal Periodicals: multi-lingual database indexing journals from non-common law jurisdictions and journals on international and comparative law. includes  international law and comparative law
    • World Journals and Law Reviews, on Westlaw International (access via Westlaw UK): a huge collection of full-text journals, mostly American, but also journals from the UK and other common law jurisdictions
    • Index to Legal Periodicals: covers US journals and journals from some other common law jurisdictions(some US academics do write on EU law).

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    Online resources

    Subscription databases
    Justis, Westlaw and Lexis®Library all include EU official publications, from the 1950s to date, as described in the individual sections above. 

    IALS also subscribes to journal indexes and full-text journal databases - see above. 

    For further information about databases for EU law, see our Databases guide. 

                                                                                                                                                                                           

    Free websites 
    A large amount of EU information can be found on free websites, a selection of which are listed below; for a fuller list, see the Eagle-i web gateway (select 'European Union' from the Country menu).

    • Agreements Database: database of treaties and international agreements, provided by the Council of the EU’s Treaty Office. Covers all treaties and international agreements made by the EU since 1989, plus older agreements which are still in force and some important old agreements which are no longer in force. Ratification details are given, plus other status information.
    • Archive of European Integration: online archive of EU documentation provided by the University of Pittsburgh. Covers green papers and white papers, reports by EU institutions and other materials.
    • The European Commission's Competition website:  provides full details of individual competition cases, together with competition legislation, official guidelines and the Report on Competition Policy
    • Council of the European Union: this website includes Council press releases, a register of internal documents (with links to the full text in many instances) and general information about the work of the Council of the EU and the European Council.
    • Curia: the website of the EU courts. Includes a database of cases and numerical indexes, both from the 1950s to date. Also provides the new official electronic-only ECR, the Statute of the Court of Justice, procedural rules, annual reports, news and other information.
    • ECLAS: the catalogue of the European Commission Libraries; covers individual journal articles as well as books and other publications and can therefore be used as a bibliography.    
    • EUR-Lex: the EU's main law database, containing the Official Journal; primary and secondary legislation; cases; COM documents; international agreements; parliamentary questions; EFTA documents; the N-Lex portal to national legislation and other national law information; and details of the progress of EU legislation, taken from PreLex. 
    • European Competition Network: provides background information about the Network, relevant legislation and links to the website of each member state’s national competition authority.
    • Internal Market and Services Directorate-General: the policy website of the European Commission's Internal Market Directorate-General, a substantial source of information about the Single Market. Areas covered include company law, contract law, financial services and intellectual property.
    • Legislative Observatory (OEIL): a European Parliament website tracking the progress of legislative proposals. It includes summaries and forecasts (unlike the Commission's equivalent, PreLex) and links to full text documents.
    • N-Lex: multi-lingual interface and thesaurus which can be used to search the national legislation websites of of the EU member states. Now part of the EUR-Lex website.
    • Rapid: press release database containing all Commission press releases from 1985 onwards, selected Council of the EU press releases and press releases from some other EU institutions.
    • Tenders Electronic Daily (TED): five-year archive of the public procurement supplement to the Official Journal (OJ S series).

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