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European Institutions and Agencies

The Commissioners
Profiles, portfolios and homepages of the 27 members of the Barroso Commission.

EC - European Commission
is explained on the main EU web site, EUROPA, which includes information on: the EU institutions, information sources and contacts, EU flag and anthem, Europe Day, the EU's policies and official documents, e.g. White and Green Papers, press releases etc.

Council of the European Union
more commonly known as the Council of Ministers, is an institution that exercises legislative and decision-making powers. At the same time it is the forum in which the representatives of the governments of the 27 Member States can assert their interests.


EP - European Parliament
comprises 785 members, directly elected in EU-wide elections for five-year terms. The European Parliament United Kingdom Office has its own web site.

ECJ - European Court of Justice
based in Luxembourg, ensures that the treaties are interpreted and applied correctly by other EU institutions and by the MemberStates. Assisted by the Court of First Instance.

Court of Auditors
based in Luxembourg, is responsible for checking the sound financial management of the EU budget.

ECOSOC - Economic and Social Committee
advises the Commission, the Council and the European Parliament on economic and social questions.

Committee of the Regions
advises the Commission, the Council and the European Parliament on issues relating to Europe's regions.

ECB - European Central Bank
is responsible for monetary policy and the euro.

EIB - European Investment Bank
finances capital investment and furthers European integration by promoting EU economic policies.

EIF - European Investment Fund
was established as a joint venture by the EIB, the EU and private and public financial institutions from all Member States. The EIF's objective is to support the integration of the Union by promoting medium and long-term investment in two fields essential to the development of the European economy: TENs (Trans-European Networks) and SMEs (small and medium-sized enterprises).

European Ombudsman
Citizens of every Member State are both national and European citizens. One of their rights as European citizens is to apply tothe Ombudsman if they are victims of an act of "maladministration" by the EU institutions or bodies.

European Agencies
exist in the following fields: drugs and drug addiction; the environment; health and safety at work: evaluation of medicinal products; harmonisation (in the single market); the improvement of living and working conditions; reconstruction in the Balkans monitoring; racism and xenophobia; maritime and aviation safety; food safety; plant varieties; training and translation.

EUROPOL - European Police Office
Its website provides basic information on its role, press releases, annual reports, the text of its founding convention and links to national enforcement agencies.

Office for Official Publications of the European Communities

Statistical Office of the European Communities (Eurostat)



Treaties, Conventions and other instruments

From this page you can access the basic legal texts on which the European Union and the European Communities are founded: the founding Treaties (original versions and later updatings), the amending Treaties, the Accession Treaties for each of the six enlargements, plus other essential documents.

The Amsterdam Treaty: a Comprehensive Guide

The Treaty of Nice (signed in Nice on 26 February 2001)

Treaty of Lisbon (signed in Lisbon on13 December 2007)

European Convention on Human Rights
For other Council of Europe legal texts click here.


EU Databases

is the database of the historical archives of the European Commission: an online catalogue of files, speeches and studies.

is the Community Research and Development Information Service. It helps find projects, partners and results in your area.

is the European Commission Library Catalogue containing references to 170,000 titles on European Affairs from the last 20 years. It can now be searched via the Internet.

EU Whoiswho

is the official directory of the European Union.

is the result of a merger of the EUR-Lex website with the CELEX database on European law. It offers free access to the largest collection of EU law and related documents.

IATE (“Inter-Active Terminology for Europe”)
is the EU inter-institutional terminology database. IATE has been used in the EU institutions and agencies since summer 2004 for the collection, dissemination and shared management of EU-specific terminology.

Market Access Database
The EU launched a new market access strategy in February 1996 to make its trade policy more pro-active and to reflect the current needs of European exporters. The strategy established specific new tools, of which this database is foremost. Among the subjects covered are: sectoral and trade barriers, applied tariffs, and an exporters' guide to import formalities.

is the partner database of Eur-Lex. It follows all Commission legislative proposals and communications, from the time they are sent to the Council or to the European Parliament until they are adopted, rejected or withdrawn. Links allow one to follow through to available electronic texts (COM documents, Official Journal, Bulletin of the European Union, documents of the European Parliament, press releases etc.).

provides a daily view of the activities of the European Union as presented by the Commission, the Council and other EU institutions in their press releases.

is a bibliographical database containing references to more than 250,000 documents sorted into four sectors: Community legislation; official publications; articles from periodicals; and opinions from both sides of industry.

Taxation and Customs Union Directorate-General
develops and operates several databases in conjunction with Member States' Customs and Taxation Services. The databases are part of the information systems of Taxation and Customs Union.

Tenders Electronic Daily is now available free of charge. Containing European calls for tender published in the Official Journal Supplement S of the European Communities, TED is the one-stop official information source for up-to-date information on public procurement opportunities from the European Union, the European Economic Area and beyond.


Social Policy

AGE - the European Older People's Platform
aims to voice and promote the interests of older people in the European Union and to raise awareness of the issues that concern them most.

European Centre for Social Welfare Policy and Research
is an international centre for social research, policy, information and training. It is an intergovernmental organisation focused on social welfare, affiliated to the United Nations.

European Council on Refugees and Exiles (ECRE)
is an umbrella organisation established in 1974 for cooperation between non-governmental organisations in Europe concerned with refugees. ECRE currently has more than 60 member agencies in 23 countries.

Europe Direct
Do you want to know more about your rights in the Single Market? Do you want to ask a question about general EU issues? If your answer is yes, then this is the site for you.

European Disability Forum
was set up by organisations of disabled people to advance disabled people's human rights in all the relevant institutions, international organisations and agencies of the EU.

European Network Against Racism
is a network of non-governmental organisations working to combat racism in the EU's Member States and to spotlight and help eliminate racist aspects of European immigration and asylum policies.

ETUC: European Trade Union Confederation
is recognised by the EU, by the Council of Europe and by EFTA as the only representative cross-sectoral trade union organisation at a European level.

European Women's Lobby (EWL)
is the largest co-ordinating body of national and European non-governmental women's organisations in the European Union, with over 3000 member associations in the 15 Member States. The EWL's goal is to achieve equality of women and men in Europe and to serve as a link between political decision-makers and women's organisations at EU level.

European Commission's website on anti-discrimination
As part of its Action Programme to combat Discrimination, the European Commission is running a five-year pan-European information campaign on combating discrimination on the grounds of racial or ethnic origin, religion or belief, age, disability and sexual orientation.

Gender equality
the European Commission's webpages on Gender Equality.

EU policy as regards equality between women and men takes a comprehensive approach which includes legislation, mainstreaming and positive actions. Financial support is also available via an action programme.

Men and Women in the Decision-Making Process
this website shows the gender distribution in organisations such as national governments and parliaments, major companies, banks and local and regional politics.

is the Mutual Information System on Social Protection in the European Union. It provides brief, reliable, up-to-date and comparable information on the legal situation of Member States' social protection systems.

Operation Black Vote (OBV)
OBV believes that Europe is for all of us, that it must embrace all its people regardless of race, creed or culture. It is supported by the European Commission.


The Euro

Euro - one currency for Europe
is the European Commission's euro website.

is the official UK Government website for the euro. This site contains information for UK businesses adjusting to the reality of the euro.

ECB - European Central Bank


Education, Employment, Training and Youth

British Council
The British Council acts as part of the National Agency for Socrates in the UK. It manages the programmes: Comenius, Grundtvig, Arion, Lingua and Minerva. Other parts of the National Agency include the University of Kent at Canterbury which manages Erasmus in the UK.
ECCTIS Ltd are responsible for UK NARIC which provides information on the comparability of education qualifications across different countries.
The National Foundation for Educational Research hosts the National Eurydice unit for England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Eurydice is the information network on education in Europe. A seperate Eurydice unit for Scotland is located within the Scottish Executive Education department. You can contact the Eurydice unit in Scotland by email.

Centre International de Formation Européenne
Established in 1954, the CIFE is a private non-profit making international organisation which includes several European studies courses as well as conferences, seminars and publications.
The programmes of the CIFE encompass educational and research activities concerning European unification, world unification, federalism, regionalism and changes within the structures of contemporary society in accordance with a federalist prospective.
The CIFE receives the support of the European Union and other international organisations, of numerous national governments as well as regional and local authorities, foundations, and private contributors.

College of Europe
is a postgraduate institute for European studies, situated in Bruges.

Connect Youth International
is the UK coordinator of the EU's Youth Programme, which promotes foreign exchanges for young people.

Education and Culture Directorate-General
is the European Commission's department responsible for the ERASMUS and SOCRATES programmes. See also its Education and Training 2010 website.

portal site to improve the exchange of information and the sharing of knowledge on e-learning in Europe.

eTwinning - School partnerships in Europe
portal site offers information in 20 languages to help schools start an eTwinning partnership. It also provides school staff with a European helpdesk to support eTwinning activities and answer questions on teaching issues.

provides information, guidance and networking services on EU programmes and funding. It works with FE colleges, higher education, community education, adult education, youth work, careers services and voluntary organisations.

The European Choice - A Guide to Opportunities for Higher Education in Europe
is primarily aimed at students who are interested in spending up to a year in another European higher education institution, undertaking study that is fully recognised as part of their UK degree course.

European Electronic Training Village
was set up by the European Centre for the Development of Vocational Training (CEDEFOP). It is dedicated to bringing vocational training experts together to share the latest information and to solve problems.

EURES - European Employment Service
is a European labour market network designed to increase the mobility of workers in the European Economic Area. It links more than 450 "Euroadvisers" - specialists in employment matters - throughout Europe.

European Offender Employment Forum
is a pan-European network whose aim is to tackle crime in Europe by reintegrating offenders into society. At this site you can find out what EOEF does, how it does it and how to join in its activities. You can also read about the latest news on initiatives in the offender employment field and learn about the results of EOEF events.

European Schoolnet
aims to promote the use of information and communications technologies (ICT) among schools in Europe. It also provides a framework for collaboration between European Ministries of Education, bringing together national education networks in Europe and around the world. See also My Europe

European Training Foundation
works in the field of vocational education and training in Central and Eastern Europe, the Newly Independent States and Mongolia, as well as the Mediterranean partner countries and territories. The Foundation also provides technical assistance to the European Commission for implementing the Tempus programme.

European Youth Portal
If you are thinking of going to another European country to study or work, or on holiday... if you are looking for activities or opportunities in Europe... if you have something to say, or ask, about European issues, this portal could be a good place to start! It offers you information, news and discussions - all about Europe and relevant to young people.

is a European network to promote the exchange of information on education systems and on national policies in the field of education.

Jean Monnet Programme
aims at stimulating teaching, research and reflection in the field of European integration studies at the level of higher education institutions within and outside the European Community.

Languages and Europe
EU Web portal on languages. An easy point of entry for the general public, the media or students for information about languages from the European Union. The subjects covered range from the Union's policies to encourage language learning and linguistic diversity, by way of a review of language skills in the EU today, to the rules for the use of the EU's own official languages and a round-up of employment opportunities for professional linguists with the EU's institutions.

NARIC - National Academic Recognition Information Centres
is a network that aims to improve academic recognition of diplomas and periods of study in the Member States of the EU, the EEA countries and the associated countries in Central and Eastern Europe and Cyprus.

PLOTEUS (a Portal on Learning Opportunities Throughout Europe)
It aims to help people find information about educational opportunities in other member states and complements EURES, the jobs portal. It also has useful information on moving to another country and exchanges.

aims to improve the quality and the "European dimension" of higher education (university and non-university sectors) through a broad range of activities: from student and teacher exchanges to joint development of curricula; from language courses to thematic network projects between departments/faculties across Europe; from preparatory visits to recognition of study periods undertaken abroad (ECTS).


This independent charity was founded by John Sewell OBE in 1958. It is non-political and non-sectarian and aims to promote understanding and discussion of European,Trans-Atlantic, and world affairs by encouraging interest in them on the part of young people, educators and other interested adults. We organise sixth form conferences in schools for young people on a variety of subjects, and we have now also started to organise conferences in universities where pupils are bought into the university as part of the universities Outreach programme. We also organize Study Tours to the institutions of Europe for teachers and lecturers where we visit NATO, SHAPE, the European Parliament, the European Commission, and the Council of the European Union.

The Council for International Education is an independent, not-for-profit organisation committed to promoting educational mobility and providing support to international students and the professionals who work with them.

University Association for Contemporary European Studies (UACES)
brings together academics involved in researching and teaching on Europe with practitioners active in European affairs. It provides a forum for debate, a clearing house for information about European studies, and is itself directly involved in promoting research and establishing teaching and research networks. UACES is one of the world's premier European Studies associations. See (looking for an expert on Europe - online directory of experts which is free to search)

UACES Student Forum
The student branch of the University Association for Contemporary European Studies, which provides students with useful resources and networks for their research. The UACES Student Forum was created in 1999 to provide UACES with a specialist body for its many members still in full-time education. The aim of the Student Forum is to provide a voice for graduate students within UACES and to facilitate dialogue and the exchange of information between students at different institutions.

Youth Forum
tries to serve the interests of young people from all over Europe, promoting their participation in building a common Europe and seeking to get young people involved in the shaping of a Europe based on the values of human rights, democracy and mutual understanding.



Consumer Affairs
is part of the European Commission's Health and Consumer Protection Directorate-General. The content of the directorate's website covers labelling of goods, timeshares, misleading advertising etc.

UK European Consumer Centre
UK ECC provides free and confidential information on consumer rights in the EU and assists consumers with cross-border disputes. The Centre is a member of the European Consumer Centre Network.

European Consumers' Organisation
is a Brussels-based federation of independent, national consumer organisations from all the Member States of the EU and from other European countries. They aim to influence, in the consumer interest, the development of EU policy and to promote and defend the interests of all European consumers.

European Health Forum Gastein (EHFG)
was founded in 1998 as a European health policy conference to provide a platform for discussion for the various stakeholders in the field of public health and health care. The EHFG has become a unique annual event, bringing together experts, interest groups, politicians and decision-makers representing politics and administration; patients and consumers; business and industry, as well as science and academia to debate key health issues.

European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction
has a website with information on drugs and drug addiction.

International Roaming Tariffs
"International roaming" is the ability of mobile phone subscribers to use their phones whilst travelling abroad. This website set up by the European Commission aims to make consumer prices for this service more transparent.

Public Health
is the European Commission's website on public health issues.

Your Europe
is a web portal with details of EU and national public services for businesses and citizens. It offers practical information on laws and services in the European Union and in its member states and links to selected official or commercial sites to give further information. Navigation and introductory text is available in all official languages; languages and content for some countries varies.

Your Voice in Europe
is a web portal to make it easier for European citizens to make their voices heard in EU policy making. The new site replaces the previous version with a one-stop shop in all eleven EU languages allowing the public, businesses and all other stakeholders to tell the Commission what they think about new policy initiatives.


R and D/ Information Society

is the Community Research and Development Information Service. It helps you find projects, partners and results in your area.

the European Registry for Internet Domain Names. Operates the .eu top level domain as of 7 April 2006.

Europe's Information Society
provides an entry point for all European Commission policies and activities related to the Information Society.

ICT Results
This website provides online news and analysis on the emerging results from Information Society Technologies research. The service reports on prototype products and services ready for commercialisation as well as work in progress and interim results with significant potential for exploitation.


Agriculture, Environment, Fisheries and Rural Affairs

Agriculture and Rural Development Directorate-General

Environment Directorate-General

European Centre for Nature Conservation
was established in 1993 to further European nature conservation by bridging the gap between science and policy.

European Environment Agency (EEA)
was launched by the EU in 1993 with a mandate to orchestrate, cross-check and put to strategic use information of relevance to the protection and improvement of Europe's environment.

European Food Safety Authority
provides independent scientific advice on all matters with a direct or indirect impact on food safety.

Fisheries Directorate-General

Regional Policy - Inforegio
main EU regional policy website.


Culture and Sport

Culture 2007 Programme
an EU programme established for seven years (2007-2013). It aims to promote cultural diversity and the development of new forms of cultural expression.

EUCLID - UK Cultural Contact Point
gives free advice to individuals and arts and heritage organisations wanting to tap the EU's cultural funds and programmes (see Culture 2007 above). This site also includes a comprehensive list of European performing arts networks.

is the Council of Europe's fund for the co-production, distribution and exhibition of European films. Set up in 1989 it currently has 25 member states.

Europe and Culture
see also 12 Star Culture a monthly magazine devoted to European culture

European Audiovisual Observatory
was set up in 1992 to gather and distribute information and data on economic, legal and financial matters relating to the film industry, television, video and new media in 33 European member states and within the European Union.

European Council of Artists (ECA)
works for the interests of professional artists, writers and performers in Europe and for cooperation between them. It was founded in 1995 and is based in Denmark.

European Cultural Foundation
was founded in 1954 by Denis de Rougemont whose aim was to add a human dimension to the economic, technical and legal initiatives of the new Europe: to create "a Europe of the spirit and of the heart". The statutes of the ECF state: "The Foundation shall have as its aims to promote cultural and educational activities and research of a multinational nature and of a European character". It is based in the Netherlands.

The European Forum for the Arts and Heritage
exists to identify and highlight the needs of the European artistic community to European decision-makers, and to encourage their participation in decision-making. It also aims to improve the exchange of information on the arts and heritage in Europe, between the cultural sector and those involved in cultural policy-making; and to act as consultant in the field of arts and heritage to European, national and regional policy and decision-making bodies.

European Union Baroque Orchestra
is chosen from the most talented young students across Europe who are setting out on professional careers as baroque orchestral musicians. The 25 successful players, selected by audition, are members of the orchestra for six months, starting with training and rehearsals for an international concert tour.

European Union Youth Orchestra
was established to show through music the cooperation and unity of European young people and to be a symbol of the European ideal. The orchestra's 140 members are selected each year from over 4,000 applicants aged between 14 and 23 from the fifteen EU countries.

aims to strengthen the competitiveness of the European audiovisual industry with a series of support measures relating to: training professionals; developing production projects and companies; and distributing works for cinema and broadcasting.

Sport and the European Union
Many of the rules, policies and programmes of the EU, although not directed specifically at sport, have an impact on the sports world or are of interest to it.


EC Offices in the Member States

EC Delegations around the World

Click here for a complete list of delegations on the web.


UK Members of the European Parliament

UK Members of the European Parliament
This website has contact details for MEPs


Business Advice

Business Europe (formerly UNICE: Union of Industrial and Employers' Confederations of Europe)
is the self-styled "voice of European business".

Directory of Special Interest Groups
contains more than 800 non-profit organisations working at Community level and covering approximately 100 branches of activity.

is an association of more than 1,300 Chambers of Commerce and Industry covering 32 European countries plus Israel. These represent over 14 million businesses and have two main tasks: to advise Governments at local, regional and national levels, and to provide services for businesses across all sectors.

represents retail, wholesale and international trade to the institutions of the European Union. Its aim is to formulate policies and promote the common interests of its members, and to keep them informed of European dossiers that have an impact on their activities. Membership spans 20 countries in Europe, including national trade associations, companies and national and European sectoral trade associations of the retail, wholesale and international trade sectors.

FedEE - Federation of European Employers
was developed out of a Commission-funded network founded at a meeting of several multinational organisations in May 1989. Today it operates as an independent, politically neutral and non-profit organisation providing a direct voice for major employers at a European level.

aims to support an effective Single Market by encouraging suppliers and contracting entities to adopt best practices and use electronic commerce and information technology to provide all the information needed to deliver value for money in public procurement. For suppliers this site gives background information about the procurement market and information about procurement opportunities across the EU and beyond. For procurement professional it presents background information on rules and procedures, discussion forums on how to improve procurement skills, and links to different sources on best practice.

Tenders Electronic Daily is now available free of charge. It contains European calls for tender published in the Official Journal Supplement S of the European Communities. TED is the one-stop official information source for up-to-date information on public procurement opportunities from the European Union, the European Economic Area and beyond.

Your Europe - Business

is a web portal with details of EU and national public services for businesses and citizens. It offers practical information on laws and services in the European Union and in its member states and links to selected official or commercial sites to give further information. Navigation and introductory text is available in all official languages; languages and content for some countries varies.


Miscellaneous European Sites

Centre for European Policy Studies
is an independent, non-profit organisation that aims to "produce sound policy research leading to constructive solutions to the challenges facing Europe".

Council of Europe
is an international organisation, based in the French city of Strasbourg. Its main role is to strengthen democracy, human rights and the rule of law throughout its 41 member states.

EFTA - European Free Trade Association
has four member states: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. The EFTA secretariat assists the member states in activities under the Stockholm Convention (the legal basis for EFTA), in the day-to-day management of the Agreement on the European Economic Area (EEA) and in the coordination and development of trade agreements with third countries.

European governments on the WWW
if you are searching for the French Ministry of Agriculture or the Spanish Justice Department or any other European ministry then look no further.

EIPA - European Institute of Public Administration
is based in the Netherlands and provides information, training, research and consultancy within the field of European affairs. It organises seminars that are open to civil servants, judges, lawyers and academics from within and outside the EU.

European Policy Centre
contributes to "the construction of a Europe equipped to face the challenges of the 21st century. To achieve this, the EPC encourages a structured debate among all significant interest groups."

European Movement
is Britain's pro-European campaigning organisation.  It argues that the European Union should become more democratic, effective and accountable, and that Britain should play a full role in reforming and developing the EU.

European Standardisation Committee (CEN)
promotes voluntary technical harmonization in Europe in conjunction with worldwide bodies and its partners in Europe and the conformity assessment of products and their certification.

The Federal Trust
is Europe's oldest think-tank on European integration. The Trust works through research and education towards widening and deepening the European Union, as well as enhancing the UK’s policies on Europe.

FedEE - Federation of European Employers
developed out of a European Commission funded network, founded at a meeting of several multinational organisations in May 1989. Today it operates as an independent, politically neutral and non-profit organisation providing a direct voice for major employers at a European level.

stands for Interoperable Delivery of European eGovernment Services to public Administrations, Business and Citizens. It uses the opportunities offered by information and communication technologies to encourage and support the delivery of cross-border public sector services to citizens and enterprises in Europe, to improve efficiency and collaboration between European public administrations and to contribute to making Europe an attractive place to live, work and invest.

OSCE - Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe
is a security organisation whose 55 participating states stretch from Vancouver to Vladivostok. In its region it is the primary instrument for early warning, conflict prevention, crisis management and post-conflict rehabilitation.

WEU - Western European Union
was created in 1948 by a "treaty of collective military aid and economic and social cooperation" in Brussels. More than 50 years later, and with an enlarged membership, it continues to take a leading role in the debate on security and defence in Europe.

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Last update: 09/04/2014  |Top