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Summary of European, national, regional research

European level: Court cases about language problems

National level: Language, migration and work in Germany and the Czech Republic

Regional level: Language use of multinational companies 

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Ongoing Research

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Scope of Study


The researchers conducting the study Labour markets, the Knowledge Economy, language and mobility in Europe analysed the decisions of EU institutions on selected cases (primarily the European Court of Justice [ECJ]), the corresponding suits, analyses of the general advocates, textbooks and texts of legal norms.

Court cases present an opportunity to investigate language problems concerning linguistic diversity and the way in which these problems are managed.

LINEE News
5th Issue, October 2009

Between Protection of the Market, Consumer and Language


LINEE researchers looked into language related problems that eventually lead to lawsuits before a European court. They concentrated on cases where one party suspected certain language requirements to be a pretext to protect national markets.

Basically, employers are free to define whatever language requirements they deem adequate for their employees; however, European and national laws aim to prevent them from defining language requirements as a mere pretext to exclude a group of people from the labour market and therefore inhibiting the free movement of labour and know-how within the EU. Furthermore, there are laws preventing countries, for example, from establishing regulations about the language(s) of product labels as a mere pretext to protect the countries market from foreign products.

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