EU influence on data privacy laws: Is the U.S. approach converging with the EU model?

Emmanuel Pernot-LePlay

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Whereas studies on EU and US privacy laws often focus on their differences, this article proposes to identify signs of convergence.

In the field of personal data protection, the EU has a strong and demonstrated influence on the laws of third countries. Building upon legal transplantation theories discussed in the comparative law literature, I first argue that this influence is sought after by the EU itself. I explain why its goal is to be a gold standard on the field, drawing foreign countries to transplant EU laws into their domestic legal framework.

This proved successful and so far, the US has been the most notable exception to this trend. A comparative analysis of both legal frameworks shows that the different rationale behind privacy protection in both countries explains the divergence.
However, signs of convergence with the EU model are coming up at the US state level (e.g. in California with the CCPA), which may eventually force the federal government to react.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-48
Number of pages24
JournalColorado Technology Law Journal
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 8 Apr 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Convergence
  • Data Protection
  • Privacy
  • United States
  • European Union
  • GDPR
  • CCPA
  • comparative law


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