Court of Auditors Special Report no.14: ‘Have your say!’: Commission’s public consultations engage citizens, but fall short of outreach activities
1. The European Court of Auditors (ECA) has reviewed the EU Commission’s consultation processes. Its audit is based on a survey it carried out, a critical review of 26 Commission consultations and the input of external experts. The ECA’s findings, under the headings in the report (in italics), are set out below.
The Commission’s framework for public consultations
2. Two-thirds of respondents to the ECA survey were satisfied with the Commission’s consultation processes. Survey respondents reported that being able to participate in consultations enabled them to contribute to policy creation and promoted active citizenship.
3. The ECA assessed the Commission’s consultation framework against the OECD principles on open policy making and found that it contributed well to inclusive legislative development processes and early engagement with citizens.
4. Despite this, the ECA found that the Commission was not consistently evaluating its consultations, in line with its own guidelines, to draw lessons learnt or assess if a particular consultation had met its own objectives.