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Editorial Policy, Coverage and Process

Case reports coverage policy
Oxford Competition Law (OCL) covers competition law as applied in the domestic courts and competition authorities of the member states.

The policy for OCL has been to focus first on relevant cases from 2008 to the present for each member state, and then to work back through decisions from 2004 onwards to increase the size of the archive. Occasionally, OCL may report on earlier cases if they are deemed very important in the development of EU law in a particular jurisdiction.

Some decisions from the European courts will also be reported in OCL. Cases are selected to complement and enhance the national reports, rather than to be comprehensive. The editors will regularly review the national cases included in order to select EU level decisions that will enrich the case analysis.

Case selection criteria
Cases will be selected for inclusion in OCL if they are deemed of material significance for a broad legal audience across the EU. Cases that are deemed to be of significance and therefore within the scope of the service are:

  • Cases that demonstrate a novel or interesting application of Article 101/102 TFEU
  • Cases that provide clarity on a point of law within the scope of Article 101/102 TFEU
  • Cases that demonstrate or suggest a difference in approach to that of other member states or the Commission or European Courts
  • Cases which are referred to the European courts for a preliminary ruling

If the case is thought likely to be cited either in European Courts, national courts or national competition authorities in other member states, or in scholarly work, as an authority for a particular point of law or application of the law, then it will be deemed to be of significance.

In order that cases continue to meet the selection criteria, all case selections must be approved by the editors, and all reports are peer reviewed by the Editorial Board. Cases which are deemed not to be significant and therefore fall out of scope of the database include:

  • Cases which only apply Article 101/102 TFEU to a limited degree
  • Cases which demonstrate little or no novelty either in their procedural or substantive aspects
  • Cases which are considered to be of little import outside of that jurisdiction

Translations of non-English decisions
For decisions given in languages other than English, OUP will publish any available official English language translation at the same time as the full case report.

For non-English judgments where an official translation is not available, OUP will commission a translation of key paragraphs. The case report will therefore be published in advance of the translation being available. Cases are prioritized for translation based on accessibility of the language. Decisions published in languages which are widely spoken, such as French, German, and Spanish, are not prioritised and OUP may decide never to undertake a translation. 

All of our translations go through a robust checking process, during which native speakers of the language in question review the work of the translator. The reporter responsible for the case report is given the opportunity to review the translation to ensure that they agree with the substance of the translation and that none of the legal nuances of the original language decision are lost.

What does a full case report contain?
Full case reports contain a summary of the Facts and Holdings, in paragraphs numbered F1, F2 or H1, H2 respectively. They will also usually contain Analysis, in paragraphs numbered A1, A2 etc.

OUP will add paragraph numbers to the judgment if the text is not already split into numbered paragraphs, to facilitate cross-referencing between report and full text. Links from within the case report take the user directly to the relevant paragraph(s) in the full text.

A full case report will also identify:

  • the core issue(s) in the case
  • the subject terms and keywords that have been applied to the report by OUP
  • any further secondary sources which discuss the decision, and
  • any previous and subsequent stages in the proceedings, or any related proceedings of which the reporter or OUP's editors are aware.

Full case reports also contain lists of cases and source materials cited. References to decisions and materials within the report or the full text of the decision link to the Oxford Law Citator.

Building the OCL archive
At launch, OCL includes full reports of cases decided from 2008 onwards. Following launch, new cases are added as they are decided by the Courts and NCAs, and we will also expand the archive of decisions in order to cover key cases from 2004 onwards.

OCL comprises enhanced online versions of Bellamy & Child: European Union Law of Competition, Faull & Nikpay on The EU Law of Competition and Whish & Bailey on Competition Law. Two substantive updates to Bellamy & Child will be added each year, written to the same exacting standards as the original text. New editions of these texts will be added as they are published. Further key OUP competition law titles will be added to the service if deemed a suitable fit with the existing suite of content.

Source Materials
OCL also includes the majority of relevant EU source material cited in the commentaries and case reports, or contains clear linking to the original source. The materials are annotated with references back to the relevant portion of commentary in Bellamy & Child and Faull & Nikpay. The materials will be updated with informative commentary notes in line with legislative developments.

Ensuring quality
OUP applies a strict and robust editorial process to legal content created for online publication.

  • We have assembled an extensive network of reporters, commentators and reviewers to bring you the highest quality case reports and analysis. To see the full OCL editorial team, visit the Editors and Contributors page.
  • All case reports are peer reviewed by members of the Editorial Review Board to make sure that quality standards are met and that analysis provided is fresh and relevant. The involvement at this stage of OUP's partners (who are experts from a variety of top-class firms, institutions and organisations specialising in competition law) ensures that only the best quality reports and analysis are submitted for publication.
  • The reports then undergo a thorough edit by OUP's specialist legal editorial team, during which citations, facts and cross-references are checked and verified against the source text. Only when we are satisfied with the quality of the report is it approved for online publication.