Madrid, 25 June 2015 – The RTI community celebrated this week the launch of two groundbreaking online tools that enable citizens to monitor the interactions between high-level European Commission officials and lobbyists in the Brussels bubble:
» LobbyFacts.eu, created by ALTER-EU’s Corporate Europe’s Observatory, Friends of the Earth Europe and LobbyControl, and relaunched last week, is a site that delivers easy access to data from the EU Transparency Register, allowing you to compare entries over time and to sort and rank the data contained in the EU’s (still voluntary) Transparency Register;
» IntegrityWatch.eu, created by the Transparency International EU office, is an interactive database which provides an overview of the more than 4000 high-level European Commission lobby meetings that have been held since December 2014.
The civic-tech tools are revealing that industry lobbyists clearly dominate when it comes to interacting with the European Commission, holding 75% of the meetings while only 18% of declared lobby meetings are held with NGOs.
Access Info Europe welcomes the European Commission’s renewed commitment to transparency, which allows these data-crunching tools to flourish and empower civil society to demand greater and fairer representation of CSOs and NGOs in the EU’s decision-making process. We note, however, that the current rules on the transparency of lobby meetings only cover a small percentage of Commission staff, and that the European Parliament and other EU institutions have yet to implement similar transparency policies.