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European glossary of European Commission

You will find here all the keywords and definitions related to European affairs

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    22 permanent and thematic work committees within the European Parliament in order to organize the work of this institution. The members of this institution are elected according to their political affiliation and of their expertise.


    All legal persons/entities participating in the submission of a project’s proposal. The partners of the project must sign a Partnership Declaration by which they agree to contribute to the implementation of the project, as described in the grant’s application.


    It means one or more national, regional or local authorities or bodies designated by the Member State for the purposes of drawing up and submitting payments applications and receiving payments from the Commission. The Member State shall determine all the modalities of its relationship with the paying authority and of the latter's relationship with the Commission.


    The Phare programme was launched in 1989 following the collapse of the communist regimes in central and eastern Europe. It wass intended to help these countries reconstruct their economies. Originally, it affected only Poland and Hungary but it has gradually been extended to cover thirteen central and eastern European countries today (Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia). Phare was the main financial instrument for the pre-accession strategy for the ten central and eastern European countries (CEECs) which have applied for membership of the European Union. Since 1994, Phare's tasks have been adapted to the priorities and needs of each CEEC. It has been replaced by IPA in the new 2007-2013 programmation.


    The European Union takes decisions in three separate 'domains' (policy areas), also known as the three 'pillars' of the EU. - The first pillar is the 'Community domain', covering most of the common policies, where decisions are taken by the 'Community method' – involving the Commission, Parliament and the Council. - The second pillar is the common foreign and security policy, where decisions are taken by the Council alone. - The third pillar is 'police and judicial cooperation in criminal matters', where – once again – the Council takes the decisions. Within the first pillar, the Council normally takes decisions by 'qualified majority' vote. In the other pillars, the Council decision has to be unanimous: it can therefore be blocked by the veto of any one country. If the Council so decides, it can use the 'Community bridge'to transfer certain matters from the third to the first pillar.


    In order to improve the follow up of the project implementation at an organisational level, it is recommended to create a transversal team to the project: the monitoring committee. This committee is generally made up by a representative of each of the main partner organisations involved plus an external body to the project (acting as political or scientific observer).


    The EU-BALKANS Summit of Zagreb in 2000 asserted the vocation of the countries of the Balkans Region: Albania, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro, as well as the region of Kosovo to join Europe. This vocation was called back in Thessalonica in June, 2003. The opening of the negotiations with Croatia encourages these potential candidates to pursue their reforms.


    The pre-accession strategy sets out a framework for each candidate country’s accession process. The pre-accession strategy presents procedures and priorities, it lays down the instruments on which the process is based: * bilateral agreements between the European Union and the candidate countries * Accession Partnerships and National Programmes for the Adoption of the Acquis (NPAA) * opening in Community programmes and agencies * pre-accession assistance * eventually other specific instruments designed to improve a particular area such as political dialogue.


    Pre-accession assistance is meant to provide support for the accession process contributing financial aid to the candidate countries to prepare them for accession and to benefit from Community funds. Concretely, it provides support for implementation of the accession partnership concluded with each applicant country.


    The Prefinancing is a financial advance by the European Commission in order to implement the project without delay.


    Committees gathering State Member representatives. They aim at ensuring and controlling the management and follow-up of the programmes.


    One of the Structural Funds' principles which results in multiannual development programmes, the result of a process leading to decision taken through partnership. The process has a number of stages culminating in the measures being taken over by public or private promoters.


    A project proposal designs the full application file submitted to the EC in reply to a call for proposals. A proposal is composed of administrative forms, budget forms and the technical work description. These forms are specific for each funding programme, call and for each funding scheme (only in FP7). Once the proposal accepted and selected the EC will name it "project".

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