Tag Archives: Europe

Advice on Limiting the Role of HR in the Disciplinary Process

A recent case has highlighted the importance of restricting or clearly defining the role of HR in the disciplinary process. Failing to do so could leave an employer with an unfair dismissal on its hands.

In the aforementioned case, employee Mr Ramphal was being investigated by his employer regarding expenses and his use of hire cars. Mr Goodchild, the manager responsible for conducting the investigation, was inexperienced in conducting disciplinary proceedings. As such, he relied heavily on support from the HR department. In his draft report, he made a number of findings in favour of Mr Ramphal, and his initial conclusion was that Mr Ramphal’s actions amounted to misconduct as opposed to gross misconduct. Mr Goodchild then determined that a written warning would be the appropriate sanction. However, the HR department became involved and removed the positive findings, meaning that a finding of gross misconduct was determined and Mr Ramphal was dismissed.

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Are renewables diminishing the appeal of LNG?

A new report suggests that increased investment in Asia and Europe’s renewable energy markets could reduce investments in LNG projects. While it is inevitable that renewable energy will eventually replace fossil fuels, we’re not there yet, explains David Austin in Business in Vancouver. Read the full article to learn more.

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who’s who legal

who's who legal
Who’s who è una guida leader nel settore legale ed Exp Legal, in persona dell’Avv.…
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NIAF Italia Hosts Legal Conference

NIAF Italia Hosts Legal Conference
Following the October Annual Gala Dinner in Washington D.C., on November 12, 2015, NIAF Italia…

This year’s gala honorees included:  Italy’s Minister of Interior Angelino Alfano; ENI ChairEmma Marcegaglia; SACE Chair and former Italian Ambassador to the United States Giovanni  Castellaneta; Chief Executive officer of Condè Nast Italia Giampaolo Grandi; and Chief Executive Officer of the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation Carl Schramm.

More than 200 guests joined United States Ambassador to Italy John Phillips; NIAF Italia President and a member of the NIAF Board of Directors Paolo Catalfamo; NIAF Chairman Joseph V. Del Raso; NIAF’s General Counsel Arthur J. Furia; and United States Congressman Thomas Marino.

Following the Gala, on November 12, 2015, NIAF Italia hosted a legal conference “Innovation through Regulation: How Legal Reforms Can Strengthen Economic Cooperation between Italy and the United States.” The Rome conference was held in the Vanvitelli Room at the Avvocatura Generale dello Stato in Via dei Portoghesi.

After the welcome address by the President of Avvocatura Generale dello Stato,  Massimo Masselli Ducci Teri, the conference opened with introductory remarks by Catalfamo and Del Raso.  Ambassador Phillips also addressed the conference attendees, followed by the keynote speech delivered by Congressman Marino, who serves as chairman of the U.S. Congressional Subcommittee on Regulatory Reforms. The first panel discussed legal reforms and dispute resolutions and was moderated by Stefano Amore.  A second panel followed regarding reforms and bilateral investments.

NIAF Italia Foundation is an Italian charitable foundation formed in 2014 under the law of Italy and under authority to operate from the National Italian American Foundation, the USA Foundation (founded in the United States in 1975).  NIAF Italia Foundation fosters cultural, political, and social relations between the United States and Italy.  It organizes conference and round table discussions, and conducts research on Italian and American culture, as well as on political and economic interactions. Visit www.niafitalia.org

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Data, data, data

Data, data, data
Every day people, enterprises, government organizations try to disentangle themselves from the increasing amounts of…

As studies show, data are now considered primary elements for generating “business” and to them a significant economic and social value is assigned.

Today, this phenomenon, commonly known as big data, has become a fundamental tool for a growing number of subjects who, due to the large quantities of data, can pursue an objective with subsequent and more or less foreseeable legal consequences.

Essentially, the protection described in this article is achievable through various ways, some ostensible, other real but it is universally acknowledged that whoever wants to achieve a goal must minimize the “regulatory” and “normative” impacts in favor of the maximization of the data processing effects on their activity (be aware: we are not only referring to the profits).

From the massive use of data and sophisticated analysis emerges one of the most “decisive” threats to the fundamental rights of individuals foreseen by article 8 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, that triggers the so-called bureaucratic overcharge phenomenon, tackled with standard formulas, software and applications that computerize ways of thinking which fall far short of banal and lead to results of questionable compliance.

As for any other topic with legal impacts, in order to understand the ramifications of the phenomenon and to better face it, we need to start with evaluating the following variables: the legitimacy of the acquisition of information, the congruence between the purposes for which the data were collected and those for which the data will be processed, the security measures applied to the information.

Furthermore, we must resist the temptation to start from the end: from the data anonymization.

According to various position papers, the anonymization, as it is only logic, is considered an “additional processing”, namely that in the presence of the big data, the anonymization is just a passage of a more complex process.

The analysis activity must allow to evaluate the consequences of the “merge” of databases of different sources. It must be considered that in the “reuse era”, the opportunity to gather large quantity of information of different sources has increased exponentially. In addition to that, individuals and public administrations that release “open-data”, have not the opportunity or the competences to anticipate the possible data exploitation in a business point of view.

Finally, let us not forget that the results of the activities on the big data can, in turn, create innovative services and as such they should be protected.

Therefore is the big data an unmanageable phenomenon?

No, as all phenomena the big data can be managed. The legislative framework in which they evolved is not methodologically ready to protect the individuals without “compromising the uses and the applications of the big data”. It is however possible to balance the bureaucratic hypertrophy with an approach that takes into consideration the necessary effectiveness of the processes.

Our previous experience tells us that, as of today, we resort to a “fictional” approach, we tried to demonstrate the security and the compliance of the processing, making the users feel “safe”, regardless from the effectiveness of this security. It is proven that when the data security mechanisms “crashed” or during a control check carried out by the Data Protection Authority, the “security” was largely compromised and the risk evaluations were out of focus, revealing a depressive and neglected outline of most of the basic data protection principles.

Viceversa, using a rational approach, pointed towards the privacy by design and following some precious instructions on best practices, we can reduce the risk. In particular, once the legal acquisition of information and relative consensus and the coherence with the specified purpose has been ascertained, we must find a way to reduce the risk of recognition of the individuals.

In this sense, an initial and repeated analysis of the context, events and changes that can affect it, can prevent abusive control phenomena as the reidentification of individuals, introducing for example higher levels of uncertainty for which certain records can be attributed to more than one person, at least 3 according to the principles of statistic deontology, or eliminating the requirements that cause the groups with similar characteristics to be atomistic or drowning the profile of the individual in a high number of others for which the characteristics of the analysis do not allow the isolation of a determined subject. This last activity can be carried out leaving intact the requirements that refer to a large number of people.

According what has been stated so far, it must be taken into consideration that these and other measures can allow the cohabitation of the big data with the current data protection frame but the methodical approach is by far more effective than other measures adopted thus far.

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