eLaw Alumnus wins European Data Protection Law Review ‘Young Scholar Award’ at CPDP

Taner Kuru, an eLaw alumnus, was awarded the prestigious European Data Protection Law Review ‘Young Scholar Award’ for his paper on the shortcomings in the GDPR for the regulation of genetic testing at the prestigious Computers, Privacy and Data Protection Conference (CPDP).

Mr Taner Kuru

Mr Kuru presented his paper to a digital audience this year thanks to extraordinary effort to move one of Europe’s most prestigious privacy and data protection conferencesonline to accommodate for restrictions put in place because of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Kuru argued that genetic data processing, like the kind used in DNA home testing kits, may cause serious privacy infringements, or lead to genetic discrimination of members of similar genetic groups. In Kuru’s article, he examines whether the European data protection framework provides any protection for genetic groups and identifies what provisions of the GDPR offer any protection. Kuru argues that there are conceptual difficulties reconciling the regime for the protection of personal data with the protection of groups of individuals that could be identified through otherwise lawful processing. 

Taner Kuru stated: “I am humbled and honoured to be recognized for my efforts as the Young Scholar Award winner by the European Data Protection Law Review. I would like to thank eLaw of Leiden University, and specifically to my supervisor Professor Mark Leiser for their invaluable support throughout this process”. 

Leiser added: “This paper is the culmination of a significant amount of work on a topic that Mr Kuru cares passionately about. This prestigious award is recognition of work undertaken so far, but I am sure solving the problem of privacy evasive genetic technologies will be a much longer journey for Taner. It also goes to show that theses highlighting the challenges facing Law and Digital Technologies do not always go away on final submission day”. 

Mr Kuru is a recent alumnus of eLaw, completing the Advanced Masters Program in Law and Digital Technologies in August 2020.

Source: Leiden University


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European Higher Education Organization is a public organization carrying out academic, educational and information activities on higher education in Europe. The EHEO general plan stresses that: Higher education systems require adequate funding and, as an investment in economic growth, public spending in higher education should be protected. The challenges faced by higher education require more flexible governance and funding systems, which balance greater autonomy for education institutions with accountability to stakeholders. Thus, EHEO plans: improve academic and scientific interaction of universities; protect the interests of universities; interact more closely with public authorities of European countries; popularize European higher education in the world; develop academic mobility; seek funding for European universities.

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