This project is member of the Global System Science Cluster, an initiative of the European Commission. For more information click here

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Latest news and developments on the project EU Community, providing tools for you to identify credible experts and key documents in EU policy-making.
Updated: 8 min 58 sec ago

FAQ2 – Who has a profile on EurActory?

Tue, 01/20/2015 - 10:06

EU Community will launch the beta version of its first, free service EurActory on 29 January at the European Parliament. But first, we explain the idea one ‘frequently asked question’ at a time.


FAQ2 – Who has a profile on EurActory?

You can find anyone working in the EU institutions on EurActory, as well as a number of key lobbyists, analysts or other stakeholders working on EU policy.

Currently, the team behind EurActory has integrated the information available on the European Union’s Whoiswho website, enriched with the core community of readers of the EU news & policy debates website, EurActiv.com.

Users can enrich their profile by connecting social media such as Twitter and/or LinkedIn.

Our software also ‘crawls’ Twitter and LinkedIn, gathering the most useful and up-to-date information about public figures (without infringing the privacy preferences of such figures).

In time, EurActory will be enriched with a number of open-source databases on EU policy making, such as the lobbyists’ Transparency Register.

Keep your eyes on this space and connect to our social media channels for more news.

 

EU Community on TwitterLinkedInFacebook


FAQ1 – What is EurActory for?

Mon, 01/19/2015 - 10:40

EU Community will launch the beta version of its first, free service EurActory on 29 January at the European Parliament. But first, we explain the idea one ‘frequently asked question’ at a time.


FAQ1 – What is EurActory for?

In an earlier post, I discussed EU Community’s first application in development: EurActory. EurActory is tailored to the people working on EU policy, whether they are in Brussels, in national capitals or work in organisations spread across Europe.

The service aims to gather the public information that is out there about the relevant experts and policy makers, to share this knowledge with this community and to allow members of this community to contribute their own expertise.

EurActory can tell you which experts to go to for input on a directive or policy you are working on. You can find the right person for a keynote speech at an event you’re organising. Or you can search for the latest updates on a contact you’re meeting in five minutes.

Want to know more? Tomorrow, we’ll let you know who has a profile on EurActory…

 

EU Community on Twitter * LinkedIn * Facebook


Žiga Turk: ‘If you build it they will come’

Mon, 12/15/2014 - 10:42

Žiga Turk, professor and blogger on innovation, sustainability and technology, published a blogpost on Sunday concerning efforts in South-East Europe to open up public data sources. If you offer the data, aggregated by public administrations anyhow, developers and innovators will come in and build applications on top of it, Turk writes.

Turk is a member of BlogActiv’s community of EU bloggers who is definitely worth following. We re-published his latest blogpost here (without editing).

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Opening public data contributes to the transparency and public oversight that the people have over their governments and public sector that they fund.

“In the EU we are often accused of having big government and public sector; spending too much; collecting too much information etc. But there may be a silver lining to it.

In the globalized competition among the states, of course it is important to improve the level of services, cut costs and reduce the red tape. But it is also important to make the best out of the situation. Which is that the public sector is sitting on a treasure of data which costs taxpayer money to collect and maintain and in many cases citizen effort to provide.

Therefore it would be wise to make sure the data is either put to use or stopped being collected.

It is highly unlikely that the governments would come with the only and the brightest ideas on what to do with that data. On the contrary, the growth around the internet has shown the tremendous potential of innovation in the private sector and the academia.

Zagreb Summit

In the beginning of December I took part at a Summit “Data Driven Innovation in Southeast Europe“. It was organized by several organizations from the region and Google in Zagreb, Croatia. Members of governments, academia, civil societies and businesses from the region met to exchange best practices and discuss the innovation strategy. Innovation that should be based around data openly provided by the public sector.

While Slovenia is also a Central European country, it shares a long common history and therefore institution types and public-sector culture with former Yugoslav republics. There are plenty of opportunities to collaborate and borrow solutions from each other.

A whitepaper summarized  the initiative and best practices. The message from Slovenia was very clear – “if you build it, they will come“. If you build open access to open public data, developers and innovators will come and create services and apps on top of that.

They will create services which are useful to the citizens. But not only directly useful ones, such as live traffic information. They would create services that would make the publicly available data easier to access and understand.

By doing that they would contribute to the transparency and public oversight of that the people have over their governments and public sector that they fund. And thereby indirectly contribute to its quality.

More information in the PressRelease and the Whitepaper.”

What tech can do for policy

Fri, 11/21/2014 - 16:38

On Wednesday (19 November), EU Community joined a meetup at the European Comission which gathered different projects working within the ‘Global Systems Science’ cluster.

To make a long explanation short: these are projects looking into using ICT tools and computation to figure out what is happening in policy making. They build tools to calculate the impact of policy decisions.

Let’s say, for example, that the EU heads of state decided to cut energy use by 30% – or even 40% – by 2020, instead of the 27% agreed recently. What would it mean for our energy market? Which energy resources should EU policy makers focus on? Would citizens and stakeholders agree?

EU Community, as part of the cluster, is working on an application that will guide the top-level discussions on such questions. What are the experts saying? Which documents truly matter in defining the right policy options? Or when can we expect a decision?

ICT is coming to the aid of policy makers, and we’re on the cutting edge of this development.

Have a look at the projects here.

Read more about EU Community’s plans here and here.

We're meeting similar projects at #GSSmeetup. A good start: what the heck is GSS: http://t.co/LjJERkM6UM #ICT #data #policymaking #EU

— EU Community (@EU_Community) November 19, 2014

#EU_community at GSS cluster mtg – collecting expertise for EU policy @ICTscienceEU @EU_Community #GSSCONF pic.twitter.com/GMNKLZqb7s

— John Magan (@john_magan) November 19, 2014

"Engaging a community of #EU experts in policy making" – EU Community spreading the word at @EU_Commission. cc @CONSENSUSeu @eunoia_project

— EU Community (@EU_Community) November 19, 2014

The #GSSmeetup is coming to an end. Interesting presentations and exchange of ideas took place. @eunoia_project @EU_Community @CONSENSUSeu

— PolicyCompass (@PolicyCompassEU) November 19, 2014

MT @eu_community: List of GSS projects: https://t.co/N715OZeHDa Tips/additions? #GSSmeetup

— FET_EU (@fet_eu) November 20, 2014

EU Community: What is coming up?

Wed, 11/05/2014 - 14:12

Making EU policy more efficient. That is the goal with which EU Community was launched, about one year ago.

The project is built on the understanding that EU policy making is changing. More and more people engage with EU decision makers. More and more information is available.

This should help us better understand the EU’s day-to-day law making… but has it done this, so far?

Policy makers and EU professionals are swamped with information. The challenge, today, is not so much finding information to support certain policies, but finding the right information to base “better regulation” on.

The EU Community team has been working hard, behind the scenes, to create a number of tools that will shed light on what really matters.

We are now close to launching the beta version of our first application: EurActory.

EurActory is our application that focuses on ‘people’. It tells you who the most relevant EU experts are, and what you need to know about them.

It scans the growing amount of information about people involved in EU policy making. It analyses the information to understand EU professionals’ reputation and fields of expertise. You can browse experts by policy area or dive into profile pages.

It will act as a rich database, containing all the essential information about the people making, influencing and studying EU policy making. But there is more…

Machines can’t have it all. Your input, as a person working on EU affairs, is key. Who do you think is a ‘must-follow’ person on climate & energy policy? Or who is, in your experience, the best speaker for a conference about innovation & entrepreneurship in the EU?

As more and more EU experts get involved, they will benefit from your input and you’ll benefit from theirs. EurActory will open up EU policy making to the combined expertise of those studying, lobbying or making it.

The goal? Working together towards more efficient EU policy. And saving you time.

Any thoughts?

Connect on Twitter or on LinkedIn or drop a line below, in the comments!

Laurens,

EU Community

EU information overkill: what do the experts say?

Thu, 04/10/2014 - 16:52

At  a workshop in Brussels, EU experts gave their thoughts on making information on EU affairs more accessible and making the policy process more efficient.

“The main opportunity that has arrised in the last years is the digitalisation of the information. [...] All the information available is online and therefore you can access it - theoretically – from wherever in Europe,” said Doru Frantescu of the transparency organisation VoteWatch.

“Everything is available somewhere,” concurred Philippe de Buck, former director general of BUSINESSEUROPE, “but on the other hand, it is too much to be absorbed, to be understood and to be handled.”

Have a look at the comments that experts gave on how to bring clarity to EU policy information:

 

This workshop was organised by EU Community, a project that is working on tools to help identify credible EU experts and key documents.

More information *

 

Shall the EU also ‘export’ its policy debates?

Tue, 12/03/2013 - 17:33

 

EU Community is a European initiative to lay the foundations for a new era in EU policy-making by providing tools that help identify credible stakeholders and relevant documents.

That is your opportunity to help us… help you!
See you in the comments below,

/David

 

Similar attempts succeeded at local levels

Tue, 12/03/2013 - 14:47

At local level, ICT and social media have already influenced several debates by blocking legislation, federating contributors and proposing new ideas. Here are some examples. Maybe you have others?

2005 French EU Constitution referendum – First time in Europe, civil society organisations and informed citizens used social media to defend an opinion and ultimately defeat elites.

2009-2012 ACTA’s negotiation – Social media guru’s mobilised citizens in most European countries to influence traditional politics, blocking ACTA but not yet shaping a new policy. Similarly, in October 2012, ‘Pigeons’ entrepreneurs took their protest to François Hollande’s tax on social media.

2013 Italian election – After Ségolène Royal with desirsdavenir.org in France in 2006, Beppe Grillo recently favoured social media with his “world’s most powerful blog”. These participative campaigns together with offline political gatherings stimulated numerous fresh ideas beyond the usual suspects.

 

  • Can you think of other examples EU Community should be inspired by?
  • What is your best model for efficient and transparent decision-making?
  • What kind of parameters are thinking of to evaluate such a complex process?

 

EU Community aims to lay the foundations for a new era in EU policy-making by providing tools that help identify credible stakeholders and relevant documents.

That is your opportunity to help us… help you!
See you in the comments below,

/David

How transparent and efficient is today’s EU policy-making?

Tue, 12/03/2013 - 14:45

EurActiv’s informal polls indicate 2/3 EU policy stakeholders are not satisfied with current policy-making tools.

They agree that social media have increased transparency (VoteWatch, Webcasting, surveys…) but not yet accessibility and efficiency. They expect EU Community to focus on relevant policy topics, make working life more productive and connect sub-communities in an active European public sphere. The project is seen as having the potential to close the democratic deficit that the existing EU Institutions face.

Considering those expectations, I think back at the quote Robert Madelin, Director-General at DG Connect, posted on closed group discussing early stages:

“My priority: reinventing government beyond the somewhat sterile ‘better regulation’ debates: using new media AND cutting-edge decision-support tools to create better sets of options, rather than endlessly creating new tools to weigh and balance options that are themselves defined in 19th century ways…too narrowly to solve problems in the new world of interdependent systems, and too much within the elites to get any buy-in at delivery.”

 

  • What is your view on the current EU policy-making processes?
  • Is it as open, transparent and efficient as you would hope?
  • What kind of tools, mechanisms and solutions would help you?

 

EU Community aims to lay the foundations for a new era in EU policy-making by providing tools that help identify credible stakeholders and relevant documents.

That is your opportunity to help us… help you!
See you in the comments below,

/David

 

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