Eric Tjong Tjin Tai

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Personal profile

Research interests

Eric's expertise is on private law, law of civil procedure, and IT law. His current research focuses on

  • legal aspects of data and digital developments (smart contracts, property rights in data, liability for algorithms),
  • methodology of doctrinal research (from viewpoint philosophy of science/epistemology),
  • service contracts, professions and institutions,
  • multi-party contracts and networks.
In practice, multiparty agreements are a regular occurrence. Just think of consumers that sign a financing agreement with a bank through a dealership when they buy a car. Who is responsible if something goes wrong in such an agreement? In practice, judges will eventually find an answer, but they still seem to require a more solid legal footing. Another subject that I'm involved with is digitalization and private law. Suppose I pay to download an mp3. Who is the owner of that file? Intuitively, you would say that I am, but the legal answer is often a lot more complicated. It's interesting to examine to what extent the law is still suited to these kinds of current developments.


  • Tilburg University (2010-present). Professor of private law.
  • Tilburg University (2007-2009). Senior lecturer, department of private law.
  • Pels Rijcken & Droogleever Fortuijn (1998-2007), Advocate, specialised in Supreme Court litigation and IP/IT.
  • Prior to 1998: various positions in IT practice.

Current courses

Click here for my courses.

External positions

Member Advisory Council (Autoriteit Persoonsgegevens)

1 Feb 2021 → …

Deputy judge Netherlands Commercial Court (Raad voor Rechtspraak/Netherlands Commercial Court)

1 Oct 2020 → …

Member advisory committee Science Award (Stichting Ammodo)

1 Sep 2019 → …

Editor ( (deLex))

5 Jul 2017 → …

Member editorial council Kluwer College Bundel (Wolters Kluwer)

1 Jan 2017 → …

Member jury best publication award (Nederlandse Juristen Vereniging)

1 Jan 20171 Jan 2022

Member Committee for Cassation in the interest of the uniform application of the law (Hoge Raad)

1 Jul 2016 → …

Editor (WPNR)

1 Feb 2015 → …

Member advisory board (TPR)

1 Nov 2014 → …

Author (WoltersKluwer)

1 Jan 2011 → …

Author (SdU Vermogensrecht)

1 Jan 20101 Jan 2022

Joint editor-in-chief (Groene Serie Burgerlijke rechtsvordering)

1 Jan 2007 → …


  • Law Of Civil Procedure
  • Liability Law
  • Law Of Obligations
  • Private Law
  • Methods And Techniques, Legal
  • Epistemology
  • Ethics Of Care


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