9.00 – 09.30: Breakfast & Registration 

9.30 – 09.45: Welcome and presentation of the results

The Nanny State Index – European Parliament edition –  is a joint project of EPICENTER and VoteWatch Europe that maps the regulatory attitudes of MEPs in four lifestyle areas: Alcohol, drinks/food, vaping, and tobacco regulation. Christopher Snowdon, Head of Lifestyle Economics at the Institute of Economic Affairs, will outline the results of the Index and highlight some of the potential policy conclusions.

09.45 – 10.00: Morning keynote by Daniel Hannan MEP

10.00 – 11.00: Self-regulation; case studies of best practice  

The EU often comes under fire for what some describe as the burden of overregulation in many different industries. In recent years, the Commission has shifted towards ‘Smart regulation’ which includes the principle of self-regulation. Does self-regulation of companies work? Is it a better alternative to government regulation? Do the two need to go hand in hand, or are there successful examples of self-regulatory behaviour? How have different industries self-regulated and have these initiatives resulted in better outcomes for consumers? This session will discuss some of the most successful examples of self-regulation and will consider what different industries can learn from these initiatives.

Chair: Marek Tatala, Vice-President, Civil Development Forum


– Laure Alexandre, Director for Public Affairs, Spirits Europe

– Sebastian Emig, Director, European Snacks Association

– Daniel Hannan MEP, ECR Group

– Diego Sanchez, Director, Foro Regulacion Inteligente

– Christopher Snowdon, IEA

11.00 – 11.20: Networking Break

11.20 – 12.20: Evidence based policy or political pressure?

The European Commission prides itself on the technocratic nature of its decision-making procedure. However, recently political goals and popular demand seem to have overridden evidence-based policy making on certain occasions. How can the EU ensure that scientific proof and evidence-based policy making remain at the core of EU institutions? Should the European Parliament find a balance between scientific evidence and popular demand, or is one more important than the other? How can we ensure that political debates are informed by facts and figures, rather than fueled by emotional scaremongering?

Chair: Cecile Philippe, Director, Institute économique Molinari

– Amjad Bashir MEP, ECR Group

– Brian Dunphy, EU Affairs Manager, JTI

– Patrik Stroemer, Public Affairs-Expert, Swedish Food Federation, & Secretary General, Swedish Association of Snus Manufacturers

– Zilvinas Silenas, President, Lithuanian Free Market Institute

12.20 – 12.40: Lunch keynote by Christofer Fjellner MEP

12.40 – 13.30: Networking Lunch