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Backlash in Gender Equality and Women’s and Girls’ Rights

15-06-2018

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the FEMM Committee, is designed to identify in which fields and by which means the backlash in gender equality and women’s and girls’ rights in six countries (Austria, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Romania, and Slovakia) is occurring. The backlash, which has been happening over the last several years, has decreased the level of protection of women and girls and reduced ...

This study, commissioned by the European Parliament’s Policy Department for Citizens’ Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the FEMM Committee, is designed to identify in which fields and by which means the backlash in gender equality and women’s and girls’ rights in six countries (Austria, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Romania, and Slovakia) is occurring. The backlash, which has been happening over the last several years, has decreased the level of protection of women and girls and reduced access to their rights.

Vanjski autor

Borbála JUHÁSZ, indipendent expert to EIGE dr. Enikő PAP, legal expert on gender issues, NANE Women's Rights Association National experts: Christiane Ugbor, Sophie Hansal (Austria), Dr. Gabriella Ilonszki (Hungary), Siusi Casaccia (Italy), Zuzana Maďarová (Slovakia), Laura Albu (Romania), Małgorzata Tarasiewicz (Poland)

Media pluralism and media freedom in the EU

25-04-2018

Media freedom and pluralism are among the rights and principles enshrined in the European Charter of Fundamental Rights and in the European Convention on Human Rights, as well as part of the Copenhagen criteria for membership of the EU, related to democracy and human rights. Despite that, there are currently concerns regarding threats to media freedom and pluralism in the EU. The own-initiative report on Media Pluralism and Media Freedom in the EU, due to be voted in plenary in May, aims at contributing ...

Media freedom and pluralism are among the rights and principles enshrined in the European Charter of Fundamental Rights and in the European Convention on Human Rights, as well as part of the Copenhagen criteria for membership of the EU, related to democracy and human rights. Despite that, there are currently concerns regarding threats to media freedom and pluralism in the EU. The own-initiative report on Media Pluralism and Media Freedom in the EU, due to be voted in plenary in May, aims at contributing towards free and pluralistic media systems across the EU that play a key role in any democratic society.

The added value of the European Citizens' Initiative (ECI), and its revision

13-04-2018

The European Citizens' Initiative (ECI) is aimed at bringing the EU closer to its citizens, by enabling them to invite the European Commission to make a proposal for a legal act. Introduced by the Treaty of Lisbon, the ECI should provide every citizen with the right to participate in the democratic life of the Union. However, the ECI in practice has had various procedural hurdles, preventing the fulfilment of the regulation's objectives. The ECI is thus not fulfilling its potential with regard to ...

The European Citizens' Initiative (ECI) is aimed at bringing the EU closer to its citizens, by enabling them to invite the European Commission to make a proposal for a legal act. Introduced by the Treaty of Lisbon, the ECI should provide every citizen with the right to participate in the democratic life of the Union. However, the ECI in practice has had various procedural hurdles, preventing the fulfilment of the regulation's objectives. The ECI is thus not fulfilling its potential with regard to bringing the EU closer to its citizens. Against this background, the present study outlines the weaknesses in the existing ECI procedure. Moreover, it assesses, with a view to their added value, the main reform proposals that have been put forward to improve the ECI's functioning.

European Citizens' Initiative (ECI)

29-01-2018

The European Citizens' Initiative (ECI), introduced in 2009 with the Lisbon Treaty, is a key element of participatory democracy, allowing citizens to play an active role in the EU's democratic life, through addressing a request to the European Commission to make a proposal for a legal act. The procedure and conditions for ECIs are governed by Regulation (EU) No 211/2011, in force since April 2012. In September 2017, the European Commission presented a proposal for its amendment, picking up on a number ...

The European Citizens' Initiative (ECI), introduced in 2009 with the Lisbon Treaty, is a key element of participatory democracy, allowing citizens to play an active role in the EU's democratic life, through addressing a request to the European Commission to make a proposal for a legal act. The procedure and conditions for ECIs are governed by Regulation (EU) No 211/2011, in force since April 2012. In September 2017, the European Commission presented a proposal for its amendment, picking up on a number of suggestions for improvement. This is a further update of an 'at a glance' note published in July 2017: PE 608.644. For more detailed information on the proposed amendment of the ECI Regulation, please see EPRS' 'EU Legislation in progress' briefing, Revising the European Citizens' initiative, PE 614.627.

EU support for human rights defenders around the world

07-12-2017

Support for human rights defenders (HRDs) is a long established component of the EU's external human rights policy and one of its major priorities. With the adoption of Guidelines on HRDs in 2004, the EU established a set of concrete measures for ensuring the protection of HRDs at risk, including the provision of emergency aid. The guidelines encourage EU diplomats to take a more proactive approach by establishing contact with HRDs and intervening on their behalf when they are at risk. Furthermore ...

Support for human rights defenders (HRDs) is a long established component of the EU's external human rights policy and one of its major priorities. With the adoption of Guidelines on HRDs in 2004, the EU established a set of concrete measures for ensuring the protection of HRDs at risk, including the provision of emergency aid. The guidelines encourage EU diplomats to take a more proactive approach by establishing contact with HRDs and intervening on their behalf when they are at risk. Furthermore, the European Commission manages a financial instrument in support of HRDs working in the world's most dangerous situations. Today, EU support is all the more important, as the environment in which HRDs operate is increasingly restrictive and HRDs have been facing a growing number of threats. The European Parliament has been a long-time advocate of a comprehensive EU policy on HRDs and has actively contributed to its shaping. It has drawn attention to the difficulties confronting HRDs in many countries through its urgency resolutions on human rights breaches in the world, some of which have focused on individual HRDs and the particular threats they face. It has also organised hearings with HRDs, issued statements about cases of HRDs at risk, and highlighted the plight of HRDs during visits by its delegations to the countries concerned. The Parliament's Sakharov Prize is the EU's most visible action in favour of HRDs. It has a significant impact on laureates, providing them with recognition and, in many cases, indirect protection. This an updated version of a briefing from December 2015: PE 573.879.

Growing impact of EU migration policy on development cooperation

17-11-2017

The sudden substantial increase in the number of migrants in recent years has had a profound effect on the external relations dimension of European Union migration and asylum policy. The main components structuring EU external migration policy – the Global Approach to Migration and Mobility (GAMM), European Agenda on Migration, and proposed migration compacts – explicitly underline the link between development and migration. Grounded in the need to address the root causes of migration and to maximise ...

The sudden substantial increase in the number of migrants in recent years has had a profound effect on the external relations dimension of European Union migration and asylum policy. The main components structuring EU external migration policy – the Global Approach to Migration and Mobility (GAMM), European Agenda on Migration, and proposed migration compacts – explicitly underline the link between development and migration. Grounded in the need to address the root causes of migration and to maximise its development impact, the development-migration nexus has evolved from the traditional treaty-based development policy approach, with its requirement of ensuring that all EU policies contribute to development objectives, to a more complex configuration. That, accordingly, many fear, may lead to the ‘instrumentalisation’ of development aid for migration management purposes. The European Parliament has taken a clear stand on this issue, calling, in a number of its recent resolutions, for the retention of poverty alleviation as the main goal of EU development policy, even when its instruments are used at the same time to tackle the root causes of migration. Along with the non-governmental organisations (NGOs) active in this field, the European Parliament opposes aid conditionality dependent on partner countries cooperating on readmission and return, as laid out in the migration compacts. Addressing the current migration challenge without jeopardising development policy achievements and objectives is one of the key issues of the revised European consensus on development, from June 2017. This is an updated edition of a briefing published in October 2016: PE 589.815.

The EU and faith-based organisations in development and humanitarian aid

08-11-2017

All over the world, faith-based organisations (FBOs) are active in the fields of development and humanitarian aid. Their faith-based character can stem from various dimensions (link to a religious organisation, funding, mission statement or main beneficiaries), but collectively they are important actors on the ground. Nonetheless, there is no fixed definition of an FBO, and in practice there are many different forms of FBO active in providing aid and development assistance. Indeed faith-based organisations ...

All over the world, faith-based organisations (FBOs) are active in the fields of development and humanitarian aid. Their faith-based character can stem from various dimensions (link to a religious organisation, funding, mission statement or main beneficiaries), but collectively they are important actors on the ground. Nonetheless, there is no fixed definition of an FBO, and in practice there are many different forms of FBO active in providing aid and development assistance. Indeed faith-based organisations are among the biggest NGOs active in the development and aid fields. In the past 20 years, national and international funders have developed an interest in better understanding and cooperating with FBOs. The World Bank, and a number of EU Member States have developed programmes and expertise in this field. Part of the reason for the growing interest in the work of FBOs is the recognition that religious affiliation often plays a major role in the beneficiary societies, and that working with religious leaders in those communities is often the most effective way of reaching local people. The European Union itself also cooperates with FBOs in development and humanitarian aid, through various programmes with civil society and on human rights. Nevertheless, the EU does not keep precise statistics, because the faith-based character of the beneficiary is not among the criteria for selecting them as partners.

Proceedings of the Workshop on Post-2020 Audit Reform: Mission Possible

16-10-2017

Audit work has changed over the years. Compliance audits look principally at the legality and regularity of payments, but they say nothing about whether the political and economic objectives were achieved. A bridge in the middle of nowhere may have been built in respect of public procurement rules and contract obligations. These compliance audits are increasingly supplemented by performance audits, in which you try to answer the question whether the objective was achieved in an economic, effective ...

Audit work has changed over the years. Compliance audits look principally at the legality and regularity of payments, but they say nothing about whether the political and economic objectives were achieved. A bridge in the middle of nowhere may have been built in respect of public procurement rules and contract obligations. These compliance audits are increasingly supplemented by performance audits, in which you try to answer the question whether the objective was achieved in an economic, effective and efficient manner. In spite of the growing complexity of the audit process the administrative burden for beneficiaries should remain reasonable. The key question is: How do we strike the right balance between providing easy access to European public funds for beneficiaries, while guaranteeing sound financial management. One element which has to be put in place for this purpose is a single audit chain, where one level builds on the work of the other.

Vanjski autor

Mr Lazaros S. LAZAROU, Member of the European Court of Auditors, Dean of Chamber V Financing and administering the Union Mr Olivier WAELBROECK, Director, Directorate D for Central Financial Service, DG BUDG, European Commission Ms Christina BORCHMANN, Director, Directorate H for Assurance and Audit, DG AGRI, European Commission Mr Franck SÉBERT, Director, Directorate C for Audit, DG REGIO, European Commission Mr Stanislav BURES, Head of Department, Audit authority, Ministry of Finance of the Czech Republic Ms Malina KROUMOVA, Deputy Minister, Head of the Central Coordination Unit, Ministry of Regional Development and Public Works, Bulgaria

Youth Employment Initiative (YEI) in Croatia

15-09-2017

The paper provides analysis of recent development in youth (un)employment and the implementation of the Youth Employment Initiative (YEI) in Croatia. The analysis covers recent trends in the employment and unemployment indicators, policies adopted to fight youth unemployment and inactivity and the analysis of YEI role in the context of the goal to reduce unemployment. This document was provided by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs of the European ...

The paper provides analysis of recent development in youth (un)employment and the implementation of the Youth Employment Initiative (YEI) in Croatia. The analysis covers recent trends in the employment and unemployment indicators, policies adopted to fight youth unemployment and inactivity and the analysis of YEI role in the context of the goal to reduce unemployment. This document was provided by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs of the European Parliament.

Vanjski autor

Valerija BOTRIĆ, The Institute of Economics, Zagreb.

Implementing the Paris Agreement – New Challenges in View of the COP 23 Climate Change Conference

15-09-2017

This study summarises the developments leading to the adoption of the Paris Agreement on climate change in 2015 and provides an overview of its contents. The further implementation process and the roles of the main Parties and other stakeholders are discussed, as well as related international developments and the challenges of the climate change conference in Bonn in November 2017. The study was provided by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and ...

This study summarises the developments leading to the adoption of the Paris Agreement on climate change in 2015 and provides an overview of its contents. The further implementation process and the roles of the main Parties and other stakeholders are discussed, as well as related international developments and the challenges of the climate change conference in Bonn in November 2017. The study was provided by Policy Department A at the request of the Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety (ENVI).

Vanjski autor

Lorenz MOOSMANN, Henrik NEIER, Nicole MANDL, Klaus RADUNSKY

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