Our Work / Technical Cooperation /

Justice and Rule of Law

Project Title:

Building on ECLI

Title: Building on ECLI

Country: Italy, Greece, Croatia, Estonia, Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, the Czech Republic, Spain, Romania

Overall objective:

- (Further) introduction of the European Case Law Identifier (ECLI) and accompanying metadata into case law repositories of Italy, Estonia, Croatia, Belgium, Greece, Germany, the Czech Republic and the Netherlands and connect these repositories to the ECLI search engine of the European e-Justice portal (hereinafter: ESE-EEJP).

- Improved qualitative accessibility of case law, i.a. within the ESE-EEJP, by having computer readable – and hence searchable – legal references within judicial decisions, especially to jurisprudence and national/European legislation (‘linked open data’).

- A 2.0 version of the ECLI standard, which is aligned with other semantic web standards as well as backwards compatible with the 1.0 version.

- To have EU wide policy guidelines on the publication of case law, specifically addressing the issues of selection criteria, data protection and open data.

- To have ECLI widely used for citing of case law in all legal and academic writings and for interoperability in (legal) IT applications.


- (Further) implementation of ECLI code and metadata in national case law repositories of eight Member States and connect these repositories to the ESE-EEJP.

- Analysis of existing solutions for computer based extraction of legal links (‘reference parsing’), and development of a common infrastructure and open source software toolkit.

- Assessment of current ECLI standard in relation to other semantic web standards, and development of ECLI 2.0.

- Analysis of European and national legal and policy frameworks on (various aspects of) case law publication (selection criteria, data protection, open data) and drafting policy guidelines at European level.

- Promotional activities (conference, website, folder, video) aimed at an increased use of the ECLI standard, both as a technical means for interoperability, and as a way of citing case law in judicial decisions, scholarly writings a.s.o.

Funding agency: European Commission

Leader: Publications Office of the Netherlands

Partners: European Public Law Organization; Alma Mater Studiorum University of Bologna (Italy); Institute of Legal Information Theory and Techniques (Italy); Documentary Centre for the Spanish Judiciary; Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Croatia; Supreme Court of the Republic of Croatia; Centre of Registers and Information Systems (Estonia); Council of State of the Netherlands; Ministry of Justice of Romania; University of Torino (Italy); Federal Public Service Justice (Belgium); Federal Administrative Court of Germany; Federal Office of Justice of Germany; Supreme Court of the Czech Republic; Hellenic Council of State.

 Timeframe: from 01/10/2015 to 29/09/2017 – 14 months

Project tags: E-justice

Monika Mazur, Directorate-General for Library,Court of Justice of the European Union
Gijs van Dijck, Professor of Private Law, Maastricht University
Marcin Baryn,Publications Office of the European Union
Marc van Opijnen, Publications Office of the Netherlands (UBR|KOOP), BO-ECLI Project Manager
Clemens Wass, Openlaws GmbH
Eleni Kefali EPLO
Georgios Karvelis, EPLO
Tommaso Agnoloni, National Research Council (ITTIG-CNR), Florence
Marc Vermeulen, Federal Public Service Justice Belgium2