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Jacob Öberg

Title: Senior Lecturer School/office: School of Law, Psychology and Social Work


Phone: +46 19 303370

Room: L2438

Jacob Öberg

Research Subject

About Jacob Öberg

Curriculum Vitae


Master of Laws (LLM), at University of Stockholm 2008. Associate Delphi Law firm 2008-2010. Doctor of Laws (LLD) at European University Institute 2014. Has been teaching European Law and EU criminal law since 2011 at Stockholm and Uppsala University. Employed as visiting lecturer August 2014 at Örebro University. Senior Lecturer in Law from May 2015. Conferred with the title of Associate Professor in Law in December 2016


My previous teaching experience concerns in essence constitutional EU law and EU criminal law. At Örebro University I am, however, teaching and supervising in general criminal law, sanctioning, general procedural law, migration law, EU law and EU criminal law


My PhD research, conducted under the supervision of Prof Giorgio Monti, focused on the limits of the exercise of EU competences using EU criminal policy as a case study. The thesis developed a general framework for testing the legality of EU legislation which is subsequently applied to discrete examples of EU criminal law measures. This examination demonstrated the existence of several important procedural and substantive limitations to the exercise of EU competences. The key conclusion of the thesis is that whilst the EU legislator often is able to adequately explain the reasons for criminalization, it regularly fails to substantiate the need for criminalization with sufficient and relevant evidence. The defence of the thesis took place on 26 September 2014.

In terms of research within the general field of EU constitutional law, I am particularly interested in the division of powers between the Member States and the Union. I have previously studied the horizontal direct effect of EU law and have, additionally, published extensively in the fields of EU constitutional law and EU criminal law in internationally renowned journals. My second core research interest, specific for EU criminal law, lies in the question of its effectiveness in pursuing EU and national regulatory policies. In this research, I have used a comparative perspective, by examining the effectiveness of criminal sanctions in relation to non-criminal sanctions, to assess the suitability of criminalization of EU policies. Instead of resorting to dogmatic legal analysis or biased sociological, law and economics and political science approaches, I combine sources from both legal and non-legal disciplines to construct a comprehensive and cogent theory of the appropriateness of criminal sanctions.


At the present I am completing a manuscript for publication of a monograph for Hart Publishing based on my doctoral dissertation. The envisaged monograph, which is forthcoming in July 2017,  will entail substantial changes to my original manuscript. In addition to EU environmental law and EU market abuse law, there will be added case studies on money laundering and crimes against the EU’s financial interests. Furthermore, the envisaged monograph will add a specific chapter on how national parliament’s power to review EU criminal law legislation after Lisbon Treaty could entail the creation of new checks to the exercise of EU criminalization powers.

In addition to the book project, I am currently working on a research project on how the subsidiarity principle in EU law can restrain the exercise of EU’s criminal law competences. Within the scope of this study I am examining both the EU’s substantive and procedural criminal law competence. The result of this research is critical to whether the EU legislator to a sufficient degree has taken into account the subsidiarity principle when it has proposed legislation within the field of criminal law.

One of my future research projects will aim to take further my doctoral research to ask a more fundamental question of European law. Whilst my doctoral dissertation ascertained the constraints that are placed on the EU legislator in the exercise of its legislative powers, it did not examine in detail the question of what the developments in EU criminal law say about the nature of the European legal order in general. It is the latter which is the focus of my postdoctoral project. The project is to be divided into two parts. The first part explores the concept of ‘supra-nationality’. This part will comprehensively explain which criteria determine the degree of ‘supra-nationality’ that a certain field of EU policy enjoys. Based on the criteria developed in this part, the second part of the project examines whether EU criminal law has, in fact, been ‘supra-nationalized’. The ultimate objective of this project is, by examining the developments of EU criminal law, to provide an enhanced understanding of the ‘supra-national’ concept.

A second envisaged research project for the future would, building on my previous research on criminalization of EU policies, concern the general case for the appropriateness of criminal laws in the enforcement of substantive EU legislation. The project with the tentative title “Appropriateness of criminal sanctions for the enforcement of EU law” will by employing research in the fields of criminology, economics and political science discuss the particular problem of the European Union criminalization project. To obtain more general findings, I will examine two areas of EU law, intellectual property and illegal immigration/irregular immigration.