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Resolving Conflicting International Data Privacy Rules In Cyberspace, Joel R. Reidenberg Jan 1999

Resolving Conflicting International Data Privacy Rules In Cyberspace, Joel R. Reidenberg

Faculty Scholarship

While core principles for the fair treatment of personal information are common to democracies, privacy rights vary considerably across national borders. This article explores the divergences in approach and substance of data privacy between Europe and the United States. It argues that the specific privacy rules adopted in a country have a governance function. The article shows that national differences support two distinct political choices for the roles in democratic society assigned to the state, the market and the individual: either liberal, market-based governance or socially-protective, rights-based governance. These structural divergences make international cooperation imperative for effective data protection in ...