Mission Statement 

Objectives

The Center for European Integration Innsbruck (CEI) is as a research center of the Faculty of Law of the University of Innsbruck. It aims at understanding, and scientifically analyzing, the phenomenon of regional integration from a legal background, but also in cooperation with related disciplines such as the political, economic and social sciences. European integration is a dynamic field of research requiring, on the one hand, a high input of personal resources and, on the other hand, a broadly based, interdisciplinary conduct of research. By way of scrutinizing the normative structures underpinning European integration, the CEI seeks to excel in offering a genuine contribution to European studies.

To this effect, existing research methodologies are challenged and advanced; topical developments in European politics are accompanied from the scientific point of view; and innovative scientific concepts in the field of European studies are devised. Through top-quality research in this area, new insights will be obtained which may be made useful for law teaching and legal practice and which may help to build up problem-solving capacity.. This also includes the transfer of the research results to the benefit of society in the form of policy advisory work and providing expertise for actors in the economic field as far as European questions are concerned.

 

Functioning

As to its structure, the CEI transcends traditional disciplinary barriers. To be sure, at the University of Innsbruck there exists a Department of European and Public International Law which focuses on European integration specifically from the normative point of view, notably in terms of European constitutional law and European economic law. However, given the fact that the law of European integration is a cross-sectional matter and permeates into all sectors of the legal and societal order, also the other legal disciplines are heavily affected by the implications of European integration. Consequently, research questions pertinent to European law are relevant to all Departments of the Faculty of Law.

This insight constitutes the point of departure for the endeavour to co-ordinate, by means of the CEI, the European law-related research of the different Departments at the Faculty of Law and thereby to strengthen this very research. At the same time, the CEI also provides a platform to realize specific research projects involving various faculty members of the Law Faculty. Moreover, the CEI facilitates knowledge and motivation transfer among the Departments of the Faculty in questions of European law. The collaborative and cross-sectional research on meta-questions of European law which is conducted by all Departments of the Faculty of Law makes it possible to provide new scientific insights on the general structures, principles and methods of European law and can therefore open up new perspectives on traditional European studies for all researchers involved.

This research follows above all the methodology of the science of law. It has a normative orientation and deals with the legal implications of European law-making. Yet, notably European law is strongly influenced by neighbouring disciplines such as the political, economic and social sciences. Thus, also other faculties are involved in the research of the CEI in order to provide new insights into the law’s impact on the European integration. The necessary interdisciplinary character of the work is guaranteed by including sister faculties of the Faculty of Law at the University of Innsbruck (above all the School of Political Science and Sociology and the Faculty of Economics and Statistics) in the research activities of the CEI, notably through involvement in scientific activities and publications.

In addition, in conducting its scientific projects, the CEI co-operates with recognized institutions inside Austria and abroad, e.g. with the European Community Studies Association (ECSA), Vienna, the Centrum für Europarecht Passau (CEP), the Europäische Akademie Bozen (EURAC), the Salzburg Centre of European Studies (SCEUS) as well as the European Centre of Tort and Insurance Law, Vienna.

 

Organization

The interdisciplinary and collaborative character of the CEI becomes manifest in its organization, in which all Departments of the Faculty of Law of the University of Innsbruck take part.