Home>Meeting with Lucas Costa Dos Anjos, teacher and coordinator of the DIGILAW clinic

19.03.2023

Meeting with Lucas Costa Dos Anjos, teacher and coordinator of the DIGILAW clinic

Lucas Costa Dos Anjos

You recently joined the Sciences Po Law School team as a postdoc, what is youR ACADEMIC AND PROFESSIONAL BACKGROUND?

I have been teaching law for almost ten years in Brazil, and I also recently worked as a data protection specialist for the Brazilian Data Protection Authority. My Ph.D at Université libre de Bruxelles analyzed the right to explanation in automated decisions within the legal framework of the European Union. Before that, I mainly researched intellectual property and economic development. As a professor, I taught many subjects related to business law, such as intellectual property, bankruptcy, privacy and data protection law, in addition to digital law, which is our main focus at the Digilaw Clinic Class. Furthermore, I worked as a lawyer for a few years, which gave me a better sense of consulting for the private sector. Even though this was not really my professional preference, it was a great experience in terms of project management, development of interpersonal skills and gaingin an insight into at a full-service bureau.

Can you tell us more about the DIGILAW clinic programme?

Now more than ever, students need to have practical experience with digital technologies that will be critical to their professional lives after leaving Sciences Po. The various partners of the clinic program provide challenges and specific demands that the clinic programme needs to address through the empirical work of our students. This is an opportunity for them to integrate theoretical and practical knowledge into their academic experience at Sciences Po, with a special focus on matters related to the digital world.

What is the DIGILAW clinical programme interested in?

The DIGILAW clinic aims to support projects related to the values and the rights needed to sustain democracies and the common good in the digital realm, where law also plays a fundamental role. So the clinic seeks action-research projects addressing these issues, working alongside partners from civil society, public institutions and private actors.

What are the students’ profiles?

It's incredibly diverse, not only in terms of nationality and backgrounds, but also with regard to the special areas of focus of each student. For example, students with a focus on diplomacy and political science bring great contributions to the projects developed. They are all very interested in hands-on experience with the partners, taking the chance to develop real-life projects.

Can you explain how you teach the weekly DIGILAW class? What do you do exactly DURING THE CLASS?

This semester, we are focused on a hands-on approach to the clinic's projects, intertwined with seminars with invited speakers from fields related to the initiatives that students are involved in. For example, we’ve had seminars concerning vulnerable data subjects, fair work on digital platforms, gender divides and artificial intelligence. While the students can benefit from speakers from outside, the other classes are spaces for them to discuss the difficulties developing their projects, to share their experience with the clinic's partners and to receive critical feedback regarding their work.

What type of clinical projects are students working on this year?

Currently, one of our projects is focused on Law and the protection of whistleblowers in France and in Europe, especially in the tech sector. Alongside The Signals Network, this project is preparing a guidebook on what whistleblowers need to consider before going public and shared experiences from professionals who have supported them. Another project tackles the different forms of digital identification in a context of big data and the normalization of data-sharing of legal/state issued identities, exploring the consequences of these issues with the Institute for Technology in the Public Interest - TiTIPI. In the future, other projects discussing how law transforms and is shaped by digital technologies will also be welcomed!

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