Visiting fellows

Digi-ConSME will invite competitive applications for academic or non-academic (policy-makers or practitioners) visiting fellowships, to carry out independent research and engage with any matter related to consumers and SMEs in the Digital Market Union.

Professor Ruth Plato-Shinar


Professor Ruth Plato-Shinar is a full professor of Banking Law and Financial Regulation, and the founder and Director of the Center for Banking Law and Financial Regulation, at the Netanya Academic College, Israel.

Her research (books and articles) focuses on bank-customer relationships, consumer financial protection, ethics in finance, financial innovation and technology (Fintech, AI-based financial services), means of payment, and various aspects of financial regulation.

Her work has bestowed upon her a few prizes and grants, including a special award from the Canadian Government for her contribution for developing the social responsibility of banks doctrine. A few important banking law precedents of the Israeli Supreme Court are based on her writing.

Professor Plato-Shinar has been invited as a visiting/research scholar to prominent institutions, such as Harvard Law School, Kings College London, UCL London, The Swiss Institute of Comparative Law, Max Planck Institute for Private Law, Bologna University, and more. She is an Advisory Board member of the Asian Institute for International Financial Law at Hong Kong University, and the Center for Commercial Law Studies at Queen Mary University, London.

Professor Plato-Shinar holds several public positions in Israel. She is the Chairperson of the Advisory Committees of the Supervisor of Financial Service Providers, and of the Commissioner of Credit Data; the Deputy Chairperson of the Advisory Committee of the Supervisor of the Capital Markets Insurance and Savings; a member of the Advisory Committee of the Governor of the Bank of Israel, and the Licensing Committee of the Supervisor of Banks; and the Public Representative of the Government Class Action Financing Fund. Formerly she served as a member of the Advisory Committee of the Minister of Finance.


Description of research:

During her stay at Bologna University, Prof. Plato-Shinar will elaborate her research on: Regulating Consumer Risks in the Digital Payments Market: Reconsidering the PSD2 Model of Unauthorised Payment Transactions.

The new digital payment instruments bear significant risks for consumers: The easy access and use which are important advantages by themselves, may impair the security of payment transactions and expose customers to fraud and misuse. The issue of unauthorised payment transactions has already been addressed by the EU Payment Services Directive (PSD2), aiming to provide customers with effective protection. However, it seems that other legal systems such as Israel and the US, provide an even broader protection for both consumers and SMEs.

The research will include a comparative analysis of the different approaches taken by the EU, the US and Israel. It will re-evaluate the PSD2 framework, and offer a desirable outline of risk allocation, aiming to balance market efficiency and consumer protection.



Professor Michael Birnhack 


Michael Birnhack is a Professor of Law at Tel Aviv University, Faculty of Law. He researches, teaches and writes about intellectual property, privacy law, information law, and law and technology. Birnhack’s IP-related research focuses on the intersection between copyright law and freedom of expression, IP and globalization, and IP history. He was a member of TAU’s Patent, Copyright and Internet committees. In the privacy field, Michael served as a member of the Israeli Public Council for the Protection of Privacy (2004-2009; 2015-2016); advised the European Commission on the Israeli data protection regime (2007, 2008); and was a member of the Schofmann Committee on Data Protection (2005-2007). He is a member of the University Privacy Committee (2020-present).

 Michael served as Associate Dean for Research (2017-2021); Director of the Parasol Foundation International LL.M (2015-2020); Founding Director of the S. Horowitz Institute for Intellectual Property in memory of Dr. Amnon Goldenberg (2015-2021); Chief Editor of Tel Aviv University Law Review (Vol. 33-34); a member of the board of the Association of Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI) (Sep. 2009 - August 2010), and a founding member of ‘Privacy Israel’ (2020).

He earned his LL.B. degree at Tel Aviv University (1996), his LL.M. (1998) and J.S.D. (2000) at NYU School of Law. Prior to joining Tel Aviv University, he was a faculty member at the University of Haifa (2000-2007) and co-founder and co-director of the Haifa Center of Law & Technology.


Description of research:

During his visit to Bologna, Michael continued in developing his analysis of separate privacy law’s separate legal categories, their collapse, and the meaning of the collapse. This refers to the categories of privacy torts, data protection and constitutional privacy. These categories developed separately, but new social and business practices indicate that we witness a context collapse, and the well-established separation no longer reflects reality, and in fact, it may disserve it. Michael also engaged in IP-related research, especially with the issue of over-enforcement by repeat players against small business, as in the case of litigation against public performance of sports events.



Professor Angela Daly:


Angela Daly is full Professor of Law and Technology at the University of Dundee (Scotland), where she has a joint appointment in the Leverhulme Research Centre for Forensic Science and the Law School. Her expertise is on the regulation of digital technologies from transnational (especially EU, UK, Asia Pacific) perspectives, and she works across data protection law, competition law and intellectual property law. She is the author of Socio-Legal Aspects of the 3D Printing Revolution (Palgrave 2016) and Private Power, Online Information Flows and EU Law: Mind the Gap (Hart 2016), and the co-editor of open access collection Good Data (INC 2019). She holds a PhD in Law from the European University Institute.

Visit description:

During this visiting fellowship I plan to research the issue of whose interests current and proposed EU legal frameworks relating to the Digital Single Market promote: big business, small and medium enterprises, consumers, or a combination of these? Adopting a critical political economy approach, I have recently considered the General Data Protection Regulation and the EU’s proposed Digital Markets Act initiative. At Bologna I will turn my attention to the Copyright in the Digital Single Market (DSM) Directive, which has recently been transposed into Italian law, and consider whose interests the Directive serves. I will also consider the coherence or otherwise of the EU’s approach to regulating players in digital markets through these different instruments.