Email not displayed properly? View the online version:

Cycle of Conferences on Internet, Democracy and Governance

Net Neutrality in Europe

For more information:

27 February 2012
14.00 - 18.30
Brussels, European Parliament

Conference organized by Prof. A. Strowel (FUSL, ULg) and hosted by M. Gallo (Member of the European Parliament).

With the collaboration of CIPI and PreCOM, FUSL

Practical information


Registration is available online. You will receive a confirmation email and all the additional practical information related to this event at the European Parliament (additional access map, security rules, documentation).

Deadline for registration: February 20, 2012.

For security reasons no registration can be accepted after the deadline.

Register online


  • Members of the EU institutions - free
  • Students - free (upon presentation of student card)
  • Others - 60 EUR

Invoice upon request.

Bank account for payment:
IBAN : BE 57 3100 4670 0435
ING (Agence Centre) Rue du Trône 14-16 B-1000 BRUSSELS

Please use the following communication for your payment: CIPI-EP conference/CF549.


Ms S. Sadeghzadeh

Event location

European Parliament
Room PHS 7C050
Download access map (PDF)

Online annoucements & discussion
IP & IT at your fingertips


For the first conference in this series of events on Internet, Democracy and Governance, we focus on the issue of Internet neutrality.

Net neutrality is a principle, or an ideal, according to which a public network should treat all content, sites, platforms, modes of communication, etc. equally so as to prevent any restriction in the communication process. This principle conflicts with the goal of efficiency, as basic management of the network is needed to reduce security risks and to limit spam. Further, experts consider that traffic discrimination is needed to improve the quality of services in the context of limited bandwidth. Such discrimination could, however, be anticompetitive if an operator accelerates the traffic of some online providers and slows down that of others. Network operators also claim that the huge investments required for next-generation infrastructure should be shared with the large online service providers who generate the most traffic. In turn, some content owners would like the traffic to illicit sites to be slowed down. On the other side, activist groups claim that any traffic management is incompatible with freedom of information. Torn between these opposing claims and objectives, the ideal of net neutrality is not easy to implement.

This conference is timely as it coincides with the net neutrality debate currently taking place in the EU. For example, on April 19, 2011, the Commission published a Communication titled “The open internet and net neutrality”. Thereafter, on November 17, 2011, the European Parliament adopted a resolution which “draws attention to the serious risks of departing from network neutrality”. The Guidelines on net neutrality and transparency of the BEREC (Body of European Regulators for Electronic Communications) are expected for February 2012.


  • 14.00 - Introduction
    • 14.00 A. Strowel (Prof. FUSL, ULg)
    • 14.10 M. Gallo, MEP
  • 14.20 - Keynote speech
    Internet : how technology can help democracy – and creates new risks?
    • B. Solomon (Executive director,
  • 14.40 - Technical, economic and regulatory aspects
    • R. Laroy (Belgian Institute for Telecommunications): network management
    • P. Defraigne (Director, Cullen): economic aspects
    • P. Larouche (Prof. Tilburg University): comparison US-EU and competition law
    • J. Sluijs (Researcher, Tilburg University): freedom of expression
  • 15.45 - Q & A
  • 16.00 - Cocktail
  • 16.30 - Panel discussion with policymakers and stakeholders
    • G. Mellier (ARCEP)
    • G. Abbamonte, DG InfSo, Commission
    • F. Donck (Internet Society)
    • V. Hennes (Orange)
    • H. Krohg (Telenor)
    • J.-J. Sahel (Skype)
    • C. Selli (AT&T)
    • D. Wilson (BBC)
  • 18.05 - Q & A
  • 18.20 - Conclusions by J.-P. Audy, MEP, EPP
    Net neutrality: what role for the EU authorities?

Presentations and other documents related to the conference will be available at: