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The Privacy Advisor | Aspiring privacy professionals compete in moot court Related reading: A view from DC: Is your privacy notice stuck in the ’90s?

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The fifth annual Helsinki Information Law Moot court competition was held Friday, 17 March. The Helsinki Information Law Moot is a competition aimed at helping students excel in the discipline of information law. The competition gathers people and students worldwide to explore topics including privacy and data protection, access to documents, governmental surveillance and more.

The organizers — Tobias Bräutigam, CIPP/E, CIPM, FIP, a partner and Head of Data Protection at the law firm Bird & Bird, and Sam Wrigley, a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Helsinki — created a unique opportunity for aspiring lawyers to apply their knowledge and interest in the very relevant and increasingly important legal challenges associated with personal data and data protection. This year's competition began in September 2022 with the publication of the problem. The problem centered on issues related to privacy, child safety and the decryption of private messages. 

Participating teams were asked to submit two 5,000-word memos — one for the applicant and one for the respondent—and the teams with the highest-scoring memos were invited to the oral round of the competition. The memo portion of the competition resulted in teams from Ukrainian Catholic University Law School, the University of Maine School of Law, Istanbul University and Bahçeşehir University participating in the oral round.

On 17 March, teams from the University of Maine School of Law and Istanbul University competed in the final oral round. It was an incredibly close competition, with the two teams separated by only a few points. The overall winner of the competition was the team from Istanbul University. The University of Maine team was recognized for the best-written memo, while the prize for best speaker was awarded to Nazar Dudchak from the UCU team.

With its focus on helping to encourage and develop the next generation of privacy and data protection professionals, the IAPP is honored to support the Helsinki Information Law Moot court competition. Along with the organizers, we hope to expand the number of international teams participating in the yearly competition. To aid in this expansion, we are thrilled to share that the timetable for next year's competition has already been determined. The key dates are:

  • 11 Sept.2023: Publication of the problem. Team registration opens.
  • 31 Oct. 2023: Team registration deadline.
  • 06 Nov. 2023: Clarification request deadline, followed by the publication of clarification answers 13 Nov. 2023.
  • 10 Dec. 2023: Written submission deadline.
  • 28 Jan. 2024: Invitation for oral rounds distribution.
  • 07-08 March 2024: Oral rounds and announcement of the winner.

We look forward to seeing many more teams engage in Helsinki Information Law Moot court competition in 2024!

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