Press release regarding the publication of doctoral theses
With reference to the statements of the Minister of Education and Research, Mrs. Monica Anisie, published in the public space on the 18th of February 2020, according to which “the consent of the author for the publication of the doctoral thesis is a request of ANSPDCP”, we mention the following:
Following the request of the Ministry of Education and Research regarding the publication of the doctoral theses, the National Supervisory Authority transmitted a point of view on the 4th of February 2020.
Thus, we assessed the provisions of Article 168 paragraph (9) of Law no. 1/2011 on the national education, with the subsequent modifications and completions, according to which:
“(9) The doctoral thesis is a public document. It is also written in a digital format. In the field of arts, the doctoral thesis can be accompanied by the digital recording of the original artistic creation. The doctoral thesis and its annexes are published on the website of the Ministry of Education, Research, Youth and Sport, in compliance with the legislation in the force in the field of copyright.”
Therefore, in view of the abovementioned provisions regarding the publication of doctoral theses, the Authority specified that, pursuant to the provisions of Article 6 paragraph (1) letter c) of Regulation (EU) 2016/679 (General Data Protection Regulation - GDPR) the processing of personal data (including disclosure) can be performed in order to fulfil a legal obligation incumbent on the controller (the Ministry of Education and Research).
At the same time, the National Supervisory Authority stated that, pursuant to Articles 12 to 14 of GDPR, any data controller has the obligation to ensure the right to information of the data subject (the one whose data is disclosed), in a concise, transparent, intelligible and easily accessible form, using a clear and simple language.
In this sense, it can be used a generic information, displayed on the controller’s website, which should also indicate the rights of the data subjects (respectively the right to information, the right of access, the right to rectification, the right to erasure – “right to be forgotten”, the right to restriction of processing, the right to data portability, the right to object, the right not to be subject to a decision based solely on automated processing), as well as the way of exercising them.
As such, having regard to the above, we state that in the response sent to the Ministry of Education and Research, the National Supervisory Authority did not make any reference to the necessity of the consent of the authors of doctoral these for the purpose of their publication.
In conclusion, according to the above, the publication of doctoral theses can be done by the Ministry of Education and Research based on the legal obligation established by Article 168 paragraph (9) of Law no. 1/2011 on national education, with the subsequent modifications and completions.
We are firmly delimited by the statements of the Minister who reflects a misinterpretation of the GDPR provisions and a misunderstanding of the point of view expressed by the National Supervisory Authority.
Legal and Communication Department