The Catholic University of America


Jennifer Delasco

"Pushing the Border Outward: An Analysis of the Evolving Eu-U.S. PNR Agreement"


Jennifer Delasco is currently a first-year law student at St. John’s University School of Law. Prior to attending St. John’s to further her education, Jennifer earned a B.A. in Politics and French as well as a Pre-Law Certificate from The Catholic University of America in May 2017. She is particularly interested in world politics, focusing on monitoring and assessing global challenges and promoting lasting diplomatic solutions. By pursuing a Juris Doctor degree, Jennifer aims to tie her interests in global politics together with a specialty in international law, aspiring to carry out a career in international litigation and international dispute resolution.


Question #1

If you could highlight just one piece of evidence from your essay (whether it be a passage, primary source, excerpt from a song, or architectural structure) which would you choose and why?

If I could highlight just one piece of evidence from my essay, I would choose to highlight the 2012 Treaty, “Agreement Between the United States of American and the European Union on the Use and Transfer of Passenger Name Records to the United States Department of Homeland Security.” I would highlight this piece of evidence because the treaty embodies the results of countless negotiations and cooperation between the U.S. and EU in order to reach a common ground on the issue. It is interesting to compare the text of the earlier agreements with the text of the 2012 agreement because you can understand the importance of the agreement and what both sides wanted to achieve through the agreement through the changes in the 2012 agreement. 

Question #2

What first motivated you to submit to Inventio, and having gone through the process as an author has your perspective on academic writing changed in any way, if so how?

During my senior year at Catholic, I wrote Pushing the Border Outward: An Analysis of the Evolving EU-U.S. PNR Agreement for my Politics Research Thesis. After putting a substantial amount of time and effort into researching, writing, and developing the paper from its conception to its completion, I realized how proud I was of the finished product of the paper. I was passionate about the topic, enjoyed the process of researching and writing the paper, and I wanted to showcase my work that I was so proud of doing. I found out about Inventio and decided that submitting my work to Inventio would be the perfect way to showcase the work that I had done.  Having gone through the process as an author, my perspective on academic writing did slightly change. The process and time frame of academic writing is much longer than I originally thought. Although the process is time consuming and lengthy, the several rounds of peer editing and revising are necessary and extremely helpful in producing the best possible work product.  

Question #3

Your article spends some time focusing on how the PNR is often viewed by certain parties as an invasion of privacy. Though you discuss differences between the EU’s and United States’s general standards for privacy protection, where do you personally think the line between privacy and safety must be drawn, particularly when it comes to combating terrorism? Why?
Drawing the line between privacy and safety, particularly when it comes to combatting terrorism, is a tricky issue and it is difficult to establish a bright line test to determine how to balance those two principles without neglecting either one. Determining where to draw the line between privacy and security depends on personal values, perspectives, and experiences, so I do not think there is one fixed cutoff between privacy and security – it is a balancing act. Although there may be disagreement around the world regarding the balance of privacy and security, it is important to recognize the way other countries go about handling the balance because, once recognized, those countries can work together, regardless of their underlying thoughts, and reach an agreement that respects both sides’ perception of privacy and security. The U.S. – EU PNR Agreement is evidence of this recognition and cooperation. The U.S. achieved its goal of obtaining the PNR data, however it had to make concessions and improve its data privacy protections in order to respect the EU’s values. There is no fixed test. Assessing privacy and security is a balancing test and all of the circumstances need to be taken into consideration when determining where to draw the line in a certain situation.