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Dr. Axel Spies

Of Counsel

As of November 24, 2014 practicing with Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP.

Dr. Axel Spies, a German lawyer, advises domestic and international clients on various international issues, including licensing, competition, corporate issues and new technologies such as Cloud Computing in the European markets. He advises on international data protection, international data transfers, data privacy, technology licensing and equity purchases. He is a member of the Sedona Conference on Electronic Discovery with a focus on German and international data protection. He is frequently quoted in the media for his telecommunications knowledge. Axel serves as the Washington correspondent and co-editor of the European Telecoms Journal MultiMedia und Recht (MMR) and of the German Journal of Data Protection (ZD).

In addition to his telecommunications and international litigation work, Axel provides assistance to manufacturing companies and industry associations on matters before U.S. federal agencies and on emissions trading in Europe.

Prior to joining the firm, Axel worked in telecommunications in Germany, Russia and France for a German utility. He has also practiced law in Russia and was a lawyer for the German Embassy in India. He has participated in various international transactions, including projects in Germany, France, Russia, the Netherlands and Poland.

He is a native speaker of German and also speaks English, French, Russian and Italian. Dr. Spies recently authored various chapters on e-discovery, cloud computing and international data transfers for a German treatise (2 volumes) on data protection (“Betrieblicher Datenschutz” and “Konzerndatenschutz”), published by C.H. Beck.


  • Panelist, E-discovery and EU/U.S. Data Flows after Snowden – United States vs. EU, IQPC Webinar (Nov. 17, 2014)
  • Speaker, Buy American Act and Foreign Assets Control in the U.S., German Embassy, Washington, D.C. (Aug. 27, 2014)
  • Panelist, The Snowden Effect — How the Landscape of Cross-Border Discovery is Impacted by Recent Events, Virtual Corporate Counsel Webinar (July 17, 2014)
  • Moderator, Can the U.S., Germany, and the EU Agree on Privacy Regulation and Safe Harbor?, A Transatlantic Cyber Dialogue on Data Privacy and Security hosted by the American Institute for Contemporary German Studies, Washington, D.C. (March 12, 2014)
  • Chairman, Enhancing data strategy, compliance, information security and data protection, E-Discovery Forum, Berlin, German (February 2014)
  • Panelist, Patents and Copyrights, The New Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership: Aligning Investments, Patents, and Pivacy Protection Workshop, The American Institute for Contemporary German Studies, Washington, D.C. (April 23, 2013)
  • Presenter, EU Data Protection and Cloud Computing for the Automotive Legal and Compliance Share Forum, Los Angeles Auto Show, Los Angeles, Calif. (Nov. 28–29, 2012)
  • Presenter and workshop leader, IQPC E-Discovery Conference, Berlin, Germany (Oct. 22–23, 2012)
  • Presenter, Personal Data from the International Perspective, Data Protection 2012, Berlin Humboldt University, Germany (March 20, 2012)
  • Video tutorial, Electronic DiscoveryC.H. Beck, München, Germany (Aug. 16, 2011)
  • Panelist‚ Net Neutrality (Neutzneutralität), Tele-Kompass, U.S. Embassy in Berlin and the German Competitive Carriers Association VATM (June 9, 2011)
  • Panelist, Specific International Data Protection Challenges — Case Studies in International Data Transfers, Outsourcing and Cloud Computing Services, Employee Data Management, and Cross-Border Investigations and Litigation, International Telecommunications and Privacy and Data Security Committees seminar, Washington, D.C. (Jan. 12, 2010)
  • Panelist, Cross Cultural Issues, Association of Corporate Counsel All Day Program — Small World, Big Issues: Your Increasingly International 21st Century Practice, Boston (Nov. 16, 2010)
  • Panelist, e-Discovery 2010, IQPC Conference, Potsdam, Germany (Sept. 13–15, 2010)
  • Panelist, International Programme on Cross-Border e-Discovery and Data Privacy, The 2nd Annual Sedona Conference, Washington, D.C. (Sept. 15–16, 2010)
  • Panelist, Across the Divide: Successfully Navigating the Safe Harbor, International Trade Administration: International EU/U.S. Conference and U.S. Department of Commerce, Washington, D.C. (Nov. 17, 2009)
  • Panelist, U.S. Civil Proceedings and European Practice of Law — Two Worlds?, 3rd Forum on Electronic Discovery, Gaining Electronic Evidence in the U.S. and Europe — Information Retention Policies, Legal Safeguards and Email Archiving, Cologne, Germany (Sept. 1–2, 2009)
  • Interview, The Obama Administration’s Plans for Subsidizing Broadband, Beck Online, Podcast (Feb. 4, 2009)
  • Panelist, New Focus on the U.S. Media, Telecommunications and Patent Law Under President Obama, German American Lawyers Association (DAJV) annual conference of Working Groups, Frankfurt, Germany (March 28, 2009)


Awards & Honors

  • Who’s Who Legal: International (2010): World’s Leading Regulatory Communications Lawyers

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