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Digital Economy & Society

High-Level Group on Media Freedom and Pluralism

A free and pluralistic media landscape can sustain European democracy.

The group, which is fully independent, was established in October 2011 by Vice-President Neelie Kroes, and is chaired by the former President of Latvia, Professor Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga. The other members are Professor Herta Däubler-Gmelin, Professor Luís Miguel Poiares Pessoa Maduro and Ben Hammersley.

The mandate of the group was to draw up a report for the Commission with recommendations for the respect, protection, support and promotion of pluralism and freedom of the media in Europe. The findings and recommendations of the Group are now public and are available on this page.

The Commission invited the group to analyse and provide recommendations on issues such as:

  • limitations to media freedom arising from political interference (state intervention or national legislation)
  • limitations to media independence arising from private and commercial interference
  • the question of the concentration of media ownership and its consequence for media freedom/pluralism and on the independence of journalists
  • existing or potential legal threats to the protection of journalists' rights and their profession in Member States
  • the role and independence of regulatory authorities
  • existing or potential measures in favour of quality journalism, ethics and media accountability, within the respective competences of national, EU and international authorities.

On January 21 2013, the High Level Group on Media Freedom and Pluralism presented its final report, with 30 recommendations. The report is also available in French and German.  

See also the public consultations results on:



Last updated on 28/04/2016 - 13:06


Robert Madelin's picture
These days, we witness a growing demand for transparency related to corporations. From taxation to corporate social responsibility; from labour standards to the origin of row materials: citizens are more and more interested in what is behind a product or a service offered. They expect companies including media to behave responsibly and be transparent about their structure and activities.
Lorena Boix Alonso's picture
Last Friday, 3 October 2014, the Commission organised an exchange of best practices on transparency of media ownership. The objective was to draw lessons from several Member States’ way to achieve transparency. The countries chosen were Austria, Croatia and Finland.
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