Users' Guide

The notes are organised under main headings such as Foreign Affairs, Economic and Monetary Affairs, Environment or Internal Market, so you can choose the headings that interest you. From these headings you can click on individual topics, for example under Foreign Affairs you will find subjects such as Security and Defence Policy or the Balkans.
The notes covering Parliament's general powers and responsibilities are based on the texts of the EU treaties. Those dealing with EU legislation (directives or regulations) are based on the texts of that legislation. At the end of each note you will find links to these texts and to further reading.
If you would like to study the successive stages by which a particular EU law was adopted, click on the links under the heading Overview of the procedure, where the parliamentary reports on which the note is based are listed. These links will lead you to the Legislative Observatory, which provides a step-by-step summary in English or French of the stages of the procedure. It also contains further links to relevant documents of the Commission, Parliament or Council.
If the law has already been adopted, you can find the final legislative text via the heading Official Journal - Final act. You will first arrive at the English version but you can then click through to any of the 11 official languages of the EU-15. If the final text has not yet been published in the Official Journal, the heading Text adopted by Parliament is given instead. If the procedure is unfinished, it will say Procedure not yet completed.
Resolutions or consultations, regulations or directives - all require a report by one of Parliament's committees, and that committee appoints an MEP as the 'rapporteur' to draft its report. You can find out more about a rapporteur, including his/her political group and curriculum vitae, by clicking on the links under Rapporteurs.
Parliament's political groups have added their own links to each note. You can click on these to find out about their work and activities and the broad spectrum of political positions in Parliament. You can read the groups' press statements on the subject, find additional background information or visit the groups' main websites.
The notes are being published on our Elections website as and when they are produced: first in the original language version and subsequently in translation in the remaining 19 languages.
Publishing deadline: 2 April 2004