Geneva Round Table
on the Questions of Private International Law
raised by Electronic Commerce and the Internet

organized jointly by the
University of Geneva
The Hague Conference on Private International Law

Geneva 2, 3 and 4 September 1999


The working languages are English and French, with simultaneous translation for the plenary sessions, but without translation for the commissions' meetings, which may, if necessary, be held in one of the languages only.

Thursday 2 September 1999

From 1.00 p.m.  Registration at welcome desk - Uni-Dufour - Auditoire Rouiller

2.00 p.m.              First plenary session - Uni-Dufour - Auditoire Rouiller

Ms. Monique Jametti Greiner, Ministry of Justice, Switzerland
Welcome by Professor Gilles Petitpierre, Dean of the Law School of the University of Geneva.

Welcome by Mr. Hans van Loon, Secretary General of the Hague Conference on Private International Law

General introductions on legal aspects concerning the subject matter by Dean Henry H. Perritt, Jr., Chicago-Kent College of Law, and Professor Catherine Kessedjian, Deputy Secretary General of the Hague Conference on Private International Law.

Introduction on the working method, function of the commissions, distribution of the experts among the commissions, by Professor Catherine Kessedjian.

Presentation of the main issues dealt with by each commission, by one rapporteur per commission (5 to 10 minutes each maximum)

Coffee break
Introductory commission meetings, with a view to refining the working method and the documentation for the following day

Dinner on Lake Geneva

7.10 p.m.         A bus will bring participants who so wish from Place Neuve (point 4 on map) to Jardin Anglais

7.30 p.m.         Boarding "Ville de Genève" Jardin Anglais (point 3 on map)

10.00 p.m.        Return to Jardin Anglais

Friday 3 September 1999

9.00 a.m.     Commission meetings - Uni-Mail

Commission I - Contracts - Room 3020 (3rd floor)

This Commission will work on all contracts, including consumer contracts, contracts with employees and banking contracts. The commission will examine both the issues of jurisdiction and applicable law, with the exclusion, however, of choice of court and choice of law clauses which will be examined separately by Commission III.
Moderator: Professor Andreas Bucher, University of Geneva

General Rapporteur: Professor Katharina Boele-Woelki, University of Utrecht, assisted by Patrick Wautelet, University of Leuven

Rapporteur for Consumer Contracts: Professor Bernd Stauder, University of Geneva

Commission II - Torts - Room 3050 (3rd floor)

This commission will examine all torts, including counterfeiting and unfair competition, i.e. torts committed in the field of intellectual property.
Moderator: Mark Warner, OECD

Rapporteurs: Cristina Gonzáles Beilfuss, University of Barcelona Peter Mankowski, University of Osnabrück

Commission III - Choice of forum and choice of law - Room 4020 (4th floor)

Moderator: Renaud Sorieul, UNCITRAL

Rapporteurs: Professor Gabrielle Kaufmann-Kohler, University of Geneva David Goddard, Attorney, Wellington

Special Rapporteur for US law: Professor Margaret G. Stewart, Chicago-Kent College of Law

Commission IV - Law applicable to data protection - Room 5020 (5th floor)

Moderator: Gérald Page, Attorney in Geneva

Rapporteurs: Mari M. Shaw, Attorney, Philadelphia Ulf Bruehann, European Commission, DG XV Spyros Tsovilis, Council of Europe

Commission V - Service abroad - Room 3042 (3rd floor)

This Commission will pay particular attention to the repercussions of the subject matter on the operation of the Hague Convention of 1965 on the Service Abroad of Judicial and Extra-judicial Documents in Civil or Commercial Matters and on the Convention on the Service in the Member States of the European Union of Judicial and Extra-judicial Documents in Civil or Commercial matters.
Moderator: Dr. Thomas Bischof, Attorney, Bern

Rapporteurs: Marie-Thérèse Caupain, Huissier, Vice-President UIHJ, Charleroi Luc Claes, Huissier, Buxelles, UIHJ Frederic A. Blum, National Association of Process Servers, Philadelphia

Commission VI - Taking of Evidence abroad - Room 2020 (2nd floor)

This Commission will pay particular attention to the repercussions of the subject matter on the Hague Convention of 1970 on the Taking of Evidence Abroad in Civil and Commercial Matters.
Moderator: Patrick Bernard, Attorney, Paris

Rapporteurs: Jan Hebly, Attorney. Rotterdam Michael S. Baum, Verisign Inc., Mountain View,USA

Commission VII - On-line dispute resolution, standards of procedure - Room 5050 (5th floor)

The Commission's analysis will include work on the European Directive of 18 May 1998 on injunctions for the protection of consumer interests.
Moderator: Richard Allan Horning, Attorney, Palo Alto, USA

Rapporteurs: Professor Helmut Rüssmann, University of Saarbrücken Professor Ethan Katsh, University of Massachusetts, USA

Special rapporteur on group actions: Professor Marc Fallon, University of Louvain-La-Neuve

10.30 a.m.         Coffee break - Room 4050 (4th floor)

11.00 p.m.       Continuation of Commission meetings

12.30 a.m.         Lunch at Uni-Mail cafeteria - Ground floor

2.00 p.m.       Continuation of Commission meetings

If a commission completes its work before 5 p.m., it may allocate its members to other commissions for participation in such commissions' work
5.00 p.m.       End of Commission meetings
Coffee break - Room 4050
5.30 p.m.    Meeting of the rapporteurs and the members of the Permanent Bureau of The Hague Conference to prepare the final recommendation for consideration and adoption by the second plenary session

Evening free

Saturday 4 September 1999

9.30 a.m.  Second plenary session - Uni-Dufour - Auditoire Rouiller

Moderator: Dr. David Bennett, QC, Solicitor General, Australia

Presentations of each commission's conclusions and recommendations, by one rapporteur per commission (10 minutes each maximum)

11.00 a.m.  Coffee break

11.30 a.m.       Presentation, discussion and approval of the final recommendation

1.00 p.m.    End of plenary session

1.30 p.m.         Lunch at Brasserie Victoria, rue Bovy-Lysberg, for those participants who need not leave immediately