Conferences

ISDC-FL-EUR-University of Geneva Online Conference 'Autonomy and Protection of Adults? Striking the Right Balance' – 11 October 2021

On the 11th of October 2021, FL-EUR - together with the Swiss Institute of Comparative Law (ISDC) and the Faculty of Law of the University of Geneva - organised the online conference ‘Autonomy and Protection of Adults? Striking the Right Balance’.

Addressing adult protection has become a matter of pressing concern and wide attention in a world with rapidly aging populations. Across Europe, policymakers are facing the question of how to ensure that all individuals are offered the support they need while being allowed to live lives of dignity. This includes older adults who have become cognitively impaired as well as young adults who have mental disabilities stemming from intellectual disabilities or psycho-social illness. In legal studies, the topic of adult autonomy is generating particular interest in two subdisciplines: family law and disabilities law. Research and activity in both areas are actively shaping discussions on policy, but each takes a somewhat different framework of principles as the starting point. The aim of the conference was to bring the two perspectives closer together. In addition, the initial results of FL-EUR’s work on its first project Empowerment and Protection of Vulnerable Adults were presented. More information on the programme can be found here.

Videos of pre-recorded presentations were made available to participants in the week leading up to the conference and were followed by short summaries on the conference day itself, providing ample opportunity for extensive and interesting discussions. These pre-recorded presentations have now been made available to a broader audience and links to these presentations can be found below. A recording of the presentations and discussions on the 11th of October will be made available in due course.

FL-EUR: First Results
Prof. Masha Antokolskaia
FL-EUR, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, The Netherlands

What is “Legal Capacity”?
Dr. Eva Nachtschatt
Research Centre on Vascular Ageing and Stroke, Austria

What is “Own Will and Preferences”?
Prof. Paula Távora Vítor
University of Coimbra, Portugal

What is the Proper Role of the State as Guardian?
Dr. Velina Todorova
University of Plovdiv, Bulgaria

A Comparative Overview
Adrian Ward
Reporter to the Council of Europe

The 2000 Protection of Adults Convention 
Philippe Lortie
Hague Conference of Private International Law

CRPD and Adult Protection: a Dialogue about the Swiss Experience
Dr. Caroline Hess-Klein (Inclusion handicap, Switzerland) and Prof. Michelle Cottier (FL-EUR, University of Geneva, Switzerland)

Real Paradigm Shift or an Unfeasible Goal?
Prof. Dr. Kees Blankman
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, NL

Pilot Project Empowering of Persons with Disabilities in Bulgaria
Nadia Shabani
Director of the Bulgarian Centre for Non-Profit Law, Sofia, Bulgaria

Is this decision truly mine? Toward an inclusionary approach of people with dementia and decision making disability
Prof. dr. Cees Hertogh
Department of medicine for older people, Amsterdam UMC, Amsterdam, The Netherlands