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What is IPM (Interactive Policy Making)?


The objective of the Interactive Policy Making (IPM) initiative is to use modern technologies, particularly the Internet, to allow both Member State administrations and EU institutions to understand the needs of citizens and enterprises better. It is intended to assist policy development by allowing more rapid and targeted responses to emerging issues and problems, improving the assessment of the impact of policies (or the absence of them) and providing greater accountability to citizens.

This system has been put in place to facilitate the stakeholders' consultation process by the use of easy-to-use and straightforward online questionnaires, making it easier both for respondents to participate and for policy makers to analyse the results. 

IPM is financed by the ISA (Interoperability Solutions for European Public Administrations) programme, which has been implemented to improve electronic cooperation among public administrations in EU Member States. 

Launched in 2001, IPM has allowed the successful launch of more than 370 public consultations available on the web portal Your voice in Europe, which is the single access point for European Commission consultations.

IPM also serves internal communication and staff management, as internal surveys are regularly conducted within the European Commission, and is used by Commission services to prepare events and conferences (registration, etc), to conduct website user surveys, etc.


IPM Software

IPM (Interactive Policy Making) is an online survey management system developed by the Commission's Informatics Directorate (DIGIT). The software is web-based and does not require any specific installation on the client side. A standard Internet browser and an Internet connexion are the only requirements to make use of IPM.

The IPM software is made of different modules aimed at the management of the life-cycle of online questionnaires: creation, test, translation, launch and analysis of results. It handles different types of single or multiple response questions, as well as free text fields. Results can be displayed as histograms, percentages or in full details and can be exported to Excel. Its user interface is available in 22 languages. Moreover, each questionnaire can be translated into any of the official languages of the EU.

  • Creation: the "form manager" defines the properties of his online questionnaire and designs the structure in terms of sections and questions, establishes the types of questions (radio buttons, check boxes, drop-down lists, free text boxes, etc.) and dependencies between questions.
  • Test: the questionnaire can be tested over a sample of users before publication.
  • Translation: a master Excel or XML file is extracted from IPM. The translation process is done off-line. As soon as they are ready, the translation files are uploaded in IPM.
  • Production: the questionnaire is launched and the URL address of the questionnaire is forwarded to potential respondents. Access to the questionnaire is either direct, or restricted by username/password.
  • Analysis of results: the "form manager" can view the results in real time. Raw results, percentages and histograms are available; a built-in filter mechanism allows the creation of subsets of results, and data can be exported to Excel for further analysis.


IPM Open Source

The public administrations, businesses and citizens of the EU Member States can download an Open Source Software version of IPM, which is developed by the Commission’s Directorate General for Informatics under the ISA (Interoperability Solutions for European Public Administrations) programme. It is offered free of charge through the EUPL (European Union Public Licence). 

For download and more information about IPM and its Open Source Software, please consult the IPM pages on Joinup



If you have a question about IPM, or encountered a problem while using IPM or replying to an IPM online questionnaire, please don't hesitate to email us at:

For more information about the IPM Open Source Software version, please contact us at:


 Last update: 09/01/2012 | Top