Comments on the Composition of EU Commission Expert Groups

9 Pages Posted: 21 Sep 2014

Date Written: August 30, 2014


This is my submission to the European Ombudsman’s public consultation on the composition of EU Commission expert groups conducted between May and August 2014. The comments concentrate on the unbalanced representation of interest groups, the inadequacy of safeguards for the selection and external monitoring of experts groups and their work (esp. in the area of intellectual property), and the institutional weaknesses and inertia that facilitate the ongoing expansion of lobby practices (e.g. MEPs, including Chairs of European Parliament’s Committees can hold second jobs with corporations).

It is observed that although a great number of EU projects are initiated and implemented in the name of small and medium size enterprises (SMEs), their representation is not reflected in the composition of expert groups. In addition, the current procedures for the selection of experts do not provide for effective safeguards to prevent or minimise conflicts of interests. Moving beyond the narrow scope of the European Ombudsman’s consultation, it is stressed that for an effective monitoring system to exist the targeted area should cover all experts in the EU who influence legislative decisions and important development policies.

Keywords: EU Commission, EU law, lobbying, expert opinion, EU Ombudsman, transparency, accountability, decision-making, intellectual property, SMEs

JEL Classification: H19, F19, J78, K00, K19, K20, K29, K39, L59, L52, P11, P41, R58, R59

Suggested Citation

Xenos, Dimitris, Comments on the Composition of EU Commission Expert Groups (August 30, 2014). Available at SSRN: or

Dimitris Xenos (Contact Author)

University of Suffolk ( email )

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Ipswich, IP4 1QJ
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+44(0)14733-38483 (Phone)

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