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Category Archives: The EU

Social network analysis: Core elites & peripheral monkeys

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The great thing of working with social network analysis is that is a truly inter- and transdisciplinary theoretical and methodological approach. Network analysts come from such diverse backgrounds as sociology, physics, psychology, biology or, as in my case, political science (and more). This interdisciplinary approach can sometimes lead to quite funny moments when all these […]

EU Commissioner Viviane Reding wants to scrap useless EU websites

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On the agenda of the EU Commission meeting of 30 November 2011 (meeting minutes, PDF), Commissioners discussed the rationalisation of IT in the Commission to save up to 10 million Euros until 2014. In the minutes of the meeting, there’s also also an interesting statement by EU Communications (and other issues) Commissioner Reding: “Ms REDING … […]

Horizon 2020 and plagiarism: The Guttenberg paragraph

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As a follow-up to the 7th Framework Program, which is currently the main EU instrument to support research and development, the Commission has proposed Horizon 2020. On 30 November, the Commission published its concrete proposal on “the rules for the participation and dissemination in ‘Horizon 2020 – the Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (2014-2020)’“. […]

Accessing EU Council negotiation documents on environmental agreements – a confirmatory application

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Accessing EU documents for your research projects can be work-intensive and time-consuming as I have experienced with the EU Commission as well as with the EU Council in the course of this year. One recent confirmatory application made by an (undisclosed yet apparently) Belgium-based researcher to the Council for a large number of documents is […]

The EU is a nanny state – but doesn’t care for its image

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The story about the EU allegedly going after professional nannies considering them “food business operators” in the meaning of the EU foodstuff hygiene regulation is heatedly discussed in Germany, in particular around Berlin – in fora (also here), in private blogs and  in politicians’ blogs. Even the German Federal Association of Day Nannies has covered the […]

Follow-up: Nannies are not considered subject to EU foodstuff regulation by the Commission

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Earlier this week I blogged about Berlin authorities claiming that day nannies would be considered “food business operators” under EU law and had to follow detailed reporting duties under this law. Mr Vincent, the spokesperson of the Commission Directorate General for Health & Consumers whose response I was still awaiting on Tuesday now has made […]

Nannies as food business operators under EU regulations? – No response from Dalli’s spokesman Frederic Vincent

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On Thursday, 1 December, I contacted Commissioner Dalli’s spokesman Frederic Vincent via email with the following request: “Dear Mr Vincent, according to German press reports, day nannies in Berlin have been contacted by the local youth welfare offices asking them to follow detailed reporting rules as they are to be considered food entrepreneurs under the […]

Revolution in EU Commission transparency ahead?

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The EU Commission, in a radical move towards transparency, has decided to publish one Commission meeting protocol from 1958 on its website. Rumours that one document from 1959 will be published next year cannot be confirmed so far. PS.: A proper Commission document register can be expected for 2015 the earliest if I’m informed correctly.

Commissioner Lewandowski’s #fail: Names more important than substance

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On 23 November 2011, the EU Commission published its plans for “ERASMUS for All“. And what was the most important thing for Commissioner Lewandowski – and the only substantive point of discussion at the level of EU Commissioners on 23 November – regarding this proposal? To change the name of the “Marie Curie Program actions” […]

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