Ideas on Europe

Informed analysis, comment and debate

Category Archives: Democracy & Citizenship

A Union of Choice: Why the Greek referendum opens our eyes

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The Greek referendum is an eye-opener for all of us, no matter if it will happen as announced yesterday by Greece’s prime minister Papandreou or not. It is an eye-opener because it suddenly makes visible the complexity of issues that are intertwined in what is a set of local, national, regional, European and global crises. […]

How the press services of EU Parliament and Commission see each other

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“All the EP press officers considered their services to be of better quality than those of the Commission, which dovetails with the insights provided by the journalists. Nonetheless, the fact that several officials from the EC shared this assumption was a somewhat striking result. […] Between the lines […], one might read the Commissions’ staff dissatisfaction with the strictness […]

The European Parliament Prize for Journalism 2011: A #fail in the internet category [updated]

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The winners of this year’s European Parliament Prize for Journalism have been announced today, and the jury’s choice for the winning text in the category “Internet” is what one might call a #fail on the internet. Now, let me say that this is not a critique to the winner of the prize who wrote a […]

Which civil society organisation received most EU Commission funding 2003-2007?

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“The primary findings are that EU-level groups, groups that promote a European identity and groups based in western Europe receive stronger support from the Commission.“ These findings are presented by Christina Mahoney and Michael J. Beckstrand in their newly published article “Following the Money: European Union Funding of Civil Society Organizations“*. In their research, they use a […]

EU Ombudsman questions EU Council access to documents procedure

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Back in May of this year, I wrote a blog post titled “The schizophrenic Council, Part 2“, and among other things I remarked regarding the delay of a freedom of information request I had sent to the EU Council (highlights changed): “On 18 May, the exact deadline for the 15 working days limit given by […]

A German podcast on the EU Parliament… and the deficiencies of EU websites

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The most-of-the-time-great and long-living German podcast Kuechenradio.org (‘Kitchen radio’) has spent its last issue (listen: mp3) on the European Parliament (EP).

Little steps towards less transparency in the EU Commission?

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Sometimes I get confused. As you know from previous blog posts, I have requested the “Results of [a] weekly meeting of Chefs de cabinet” of the European Commission, the penultimate before the summer break.*  But there may be more to this matter than just a case of a freedom of information request: Until the summer […]

The State of the European Union: On the road to a more political polity?

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Looking at “The Week in Bloggingportal“, the summary of last week’s euroblog posts, many of which have covered Barroso’s “State of the European Union” (SOTEU) speech, one may ask: So what is the state of Union?

Barroso’s State of the Union 2011: My SOTEU bingo results

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This morning, EU Commission President Barroso delivered his “State of the Union” (text, video). We at Bloggingportal.eu have called for a Barroso Buzzword/Bullshit Bingo to be played, and I have proposed my own list of 10 words/phrases to be said during the speech. Here is how I succeeded: Europe 2020 – check 1x Crisis – […]

A story for the Right to Know Day 2011: EU rights and EU Commission practice

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1 1/2 months ago, I’ve requested a meeting protocol of the Chefs de Cabinet of the EU Commission. As blogged before, my initial request received a negative reply.

I appealed this decision, and – as I have also blogged – on 6 September I was informed that the Commission needed an additional 15 working days. Yesterday, I have received the following answer: […]

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