7th Fundamental Rights Platform meeting Speakers

(In order of appearance)

Maija Sakslin
Maija Sakslin is the Chairperson of the FRA Management Board and Finland’s Deputy Parliamentary Ombudsman. She is an expert in constitutional and EU law, especially social rights. Previously, Ms Sakslin was a researcher at the Social Insurance Institution in Finland and at the University of Helsinki’s Institute of International Economic Law. She participated as an expert in a number of working groups on reforming the Finnish constitution. She also took part in various EU research projects, among them the Observatory for Migrant workers and Training and reporting on social security coordination. [ Read speech ]
Morten Kjaerum
Morten Kjaerum has served as Director of the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights since June 2008. Before joining the FRA, Mr Kjaerum served as the founding Director of the Danish Institute for Human Rights. Over 17 years in top executive roles, Mr Kjaerum built the Institute, Denmark’s national human rights institution, into an internationally recognised institution. An expert in human rights implementation, Mr Kjaerum has been a member of the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and the President of the International Coordination Committee for National Human Rights Institutions, a network coordinating relations between the United Nations and national institutions. Mr Kaerum has written extensively on issues relating to human rights, in particular on refugee law, the prohibition against racial discrimination, and the role of national human rights institutions. [ Read keynote speech & closing speech ]
Max Schrems
Max Schrems is an Austrian PhD student at the University of Vienna, School of Law. In 2011, he worked as a researcher on the EU “SMART” Project concerning International Data Exchange by Law Enforcement. The same year he has founded the data protection NGO “Europe vs. Facebook” of which he is the Chairperson. Prior to this, he has written a book on private video surveillance. He also gives numerous lectures and talks on Privacy Law (University of Vienna, Zürich, Amsterdam, Santa Clara, Linz, Brno, TU Vienna, European Lawyers Conference, Swiss DPC Conference). [ Download presentation ]
Kosmas Boskovits is currently Deputy Legal Counsellor at the Legal Service of the Hellenic Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Under the Hellenic Presidency of the Council of the European Union, he chairs the Working Party on Fundamental Rights, Citizens’ Rights and Free Movement of Persons (FREMP). He holds a post-graduate decree (LLM) and a PhD in European Law from the University of Strasbourg. He has published extensively on issues relating to European integration, mainly on institutional issues. His recent publications include: “The growth of the Area of Freedom, Security and Justice: shifts of power, institutional models and individual protection, Ευρωπαίων Πολιτεία, 2011/1, (with Professor Skandamis) Rival Securities in Europe and Beyond, Athens, EPLO, 2013, The Greek programmes as an institutional experiment (forthcoming).
 Salla Saastamoinen
Salla Saastamoinen is the Head of Unit of Fundamental Rights and Rights of the Child in the Directorate General Justice of the European Commission. The core responsibilities of this unit include ensuring effective implementation of the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, promoting the fight against racism and xenophobia as well as the fight against homophobia. In this capacity, Ms Saastamoinen represents the European Commission in the Management Board of the FRA. Ms Saastamoinen has worked for the European Commission for the for the past 17 years, where she has held several positions, including the Head of Unit Civil Justice Policy
Natacha Kazatchkine
Natacha Kazatchkine is Senior Executive Officer, European Institutions Office, Amnesty International. She joined the EU office of Amnesty International in 2005 where she is now Senior Executive Officer, leading on legal affairs, justice and human rights in the EU. Natacha is the coordinator of the Human Rights and Democracy Network’s (Brusselsbased coalition of human rights NGOs) working group on EU internal human rights’ policy. She holds a Master in European law and criminal policy from Paris Sorbonne University and has previously worked as legal adviser for asylum seekers in the UK and as programme coordinator on prison reform in Africa. In 2012, she took leave from Amnesty to assist with the drafting of the European Parliament’s report on the CIA rendition and secret detention programmes in Europe.
Rosemary Byrne
Rosemary Byrne is the Chairperson of the FRA Scientific Committee. She teaches international and human rights law at Trinity College Dublin where she was the founding director of the centre for Post-conflict Justice. She has served a five-year term as a Human Rights Commissioner for the Irish Human Rights Commission, which is the national human right institution established in the aftermath of the Good Friday Agreement. She has worked extensively in the area of European refugee and asylum rights, as well as in the field of international criminal justice. She is also a Research Fellow and a member of the governing Executive committee of the Institute for International Integration Studies, on the Board of Advisors for the South Asia Democratic Forum, a Visiting professor of International Law at the Paris School of International Affairs, Science Po and at the China-EU School of Law, China University of Political Science and Law.


Friso Roscam Abbing
Friso Roscam Abbing has served as Head of Communication Department at FRA since 2009. Prior to this, Mr Roscam Abbing was a Member of Cabinet of the European Commission Vice-President Jacques Barrot, the Commissioner for Freedom, Security and Justice. From 2004–2008, he was the spokesman of European Commission Vice President Franco Frattini, the Commissioner responsible for Freedom, Security and Justice issues. Between 2000 and 2004, he headed the EU Asylum Polices sector at the European Commission's DG Justice, Freedom and Security. Before this, he led the EU Office of the European Council on Refugees and Exiles (ECRE, 1994-2000) after starting his career as Head of the Legal Department at the Dutch Refugee Council (1986-1994).