Civil society Implementation

Revision of press policy floated by Commission makes waves

Commission proposal to also allow non-Brussels based press into off-the-record briefings is criticised by Brussels journalists for undermining the trust relationship required for quality journalism – while others question the press corps’ commitment to openness.

The Berlaymont Press Room. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

Inquiry of Council measures during pandemic finds transparency gaps – but also improvements

Ombudsman considers that initial Council measures were “not in line with the Treaty” and regrets transparency gaps, but stops short of declaring maladministration.

Dutch data journalist Daniël Verlaan hacks a remote Council meeting in November 2020. Credit: Politico.

New Book Asks Us to Reassess the Politics of Secrecy and Transparency

In her latest book, Radical Secrecy: The Ends of Transparency in Datafied America, Clare Birchall advocates for a rejection of the familiar opposition between “the promise of transparency” and “the threat posed by secrecy”. Her analysis of the pattern of visibility and opacity in the current Covid-19 pandemic lays bare governance risks that apply as much to the European Union as they do to the United States.

Credit: author.
News reports

Transparency news reports in 2020

Since September 2014, the Open Government in the EU blog scans English-language online news outlets for news on EU transparency. Below, you can find the news digest for 2020.

Central points in news coverage were the use of transparency to fight disinformation, transparency of measures and institutional changes related to the corona pandemic, as well as the German Presidency’s efforts to better regulate the visibility of Council decision making and lobbying activities.