Monday, 27 October 2008

Statewatch: EU openness, transparency and democracy

Even before true democratic reform of the European Union, and more or less regardless of the ratification of the Treaty of Lisbon, the European Council could improve openness, transparency and democracy by providing impetus for a number of limited, but important reforms.

Professor Steve Peers has written a number of proposals for Statewatch, setting out possible improvements, which primarily require political will. The concrete proposals are given in two draft documents:

Declaration of the European Council on enhancing the openness, transparency and democracy of the activities of the European Union (Annex I)

Inter-Institutional Agreement On enhancing public access to documents and citizens’ participation in decision-making as regards the co-decision procedure (Annex II)

Together with the introductory explanations, they form the ‘Statewatch analysis: Proposals for greater openness, transparency and democracy in the EU’, by Professor Steve Peers, University of Essex (October 2008).

This important document is available at:


Before a democratic European Union is established, a number of improvements are possible, if the political will is there. Even the Lisbon Treaty might become less odious for some EU citizens, if these reform steps were taken.

Ralf Grahn