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ERC awards Advanced Grant to Giovanni Sartor for 'CompuLaw'

Posted on 01 April 2019

Congratulations to EUI alumnus and Professor of Law Giovanni Sartor, whose ERC Advanced Grant proposal 'Computable Law', or CompuLaw, was selected for funding by the European Research Council in the 2019 round of awards announced on 28 March.


Motivation for Professor Sartor's project lies in the need for adequate law and legal instruments to rule what he calls the 'hybrid infosphere':  the huge and ever-more- pervasive, autonomous and intelligent computational entities transforming almost every dimension of social life. These computations are so large, so fast, and so ubiquitous that it is impossible for humans to monitor them and anticipate illegal behaviour. A solution, and the aim of Sartor's research, is to make law computation-oriented. That is, to integrate, map and partially translate legal and ethical requirements into computable representations of legal knowledge and reasoning.

The EUI and the University of Bologna will provide the main expertise for the five-year multi-disciplinary project. While the former, especially thanks to the participation of Professors Deirdre Curtin and Hans-W. Micklitz, will anchor the areas concerning law, economics and regulation theory, the latter will support the the project's work in legal informatics, legal logic, computing and AI. Scholars of legal and social theory, philosophy and logic, and computing and artificial intelligence (AI) from around the world have committed their participation in the project. 

CompuLaw will start in Autumn 2019, and foresees the appointment of a senior researcher, two post-docs and two Ph.D. researchers.

The European Research Council, set up by the European Union in 2007, is the premiere European funding organisation for excellent frontier research. Carlos Moedas, European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation, said: “The ERC Advanced Grants back outstanding researchers throughout Europe. Their pioneering work has the potential to make a difference in people’s everyday life and deliver solutions to some of our most urgent challenges. The ERC gives these bright minds the possibility to follow their most creative ideas and to play a decisive role in the advancement of all domains of knowledge”.