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Reconciling the Promotion of Equality with the Protection of Personal Data


The project aims to explore the tension between the promotion of equality and the protection of personal data. In order to effectively combat discrimination against certain vulnerable groups, States need to be able to identify and measure the type and level of discrimination experienced by the groups concerned. To this end, they need to dispose of reliable data, broken down by criteria such as race, ethnicity, religion or sexual orientation. Yet, this information is "sensitive data", the treatment of which is restricted by international and European norms on personal data protection. Through a comparative study of the legislation and practice adopted by a sample of countries (the United Kingdom, Belgium, France, the Netherlands and the United States) in the field of anti-discrimination, the research will seek to define ways of reconciling the conflicting imperatives of the struggle against discrimination and personal data protection.

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