Bark and bite: effective enforcement of privacy & data protection in times of turmoil

Data protection supervisory and enforcement authorities play a crucial role in ensuring that people can enjoy their human rights to privacy and data protection. They share this commitment with digital rights groups, journalists and academics, who – as broad civil society actors – also contribute to watching over EU laws and policies and pushing back against harmful uses of personal data by states and corporations alike.

2024 holds a lot of watchdog and supervisory promise, from GDPR enforcement rules to the anticipated implementation of landmark new rules such as the DSA and AI Act. At the same time, human rights have always been political, and are increasingly instrumentalised or used as bargaining chips. Personal data are increasingly used in ways that can have significant consequences, including in areas where political interests are strong and both democratic and independent oversight are indispensable.

We expect the next year to (continue to) be politically turbulent, with several national elections as well as the much-anticipated European elections, where different interests will vie to gain the most influence over EU decision-making and the implementation of EU policies. This summit will therefore bring together different data protection and privacy professionals and advocates to consider how the enforcement of privacy and data protection can serve as a bastion against democratic backsliding and broader attacks on human rights and institutions.


  • Ella Jakubowska, Senior Policy Officer EDRi


  • Wojciech Wiewiórowski, European Data Protection Supervisor
  • Danny Mekić, technologist and researcher, Leiden University and Eindhoven University of Technology
  • Chloé Berthelemy, Senior Policy Advisor, EDRi
  • Thomas Zerdick, Head of Unit, EDPS
  • Tineke Strik, Member of the European Parliament for the Greens/EFA group, the Netherlands
  • Ursula Pachl, Deputy Director General, The European Consumer Organisation (BEUC)