On 7 November, in a week where the Paradise Papers brought forward new questions about corporations, tax and the relationship between business and state, EPACA hosted a panel discussion on the future of transparency in Europe. The discussion, which featured a keynote speech from European Ombudsman Emily O’Reilly, focused on how the Transparency Register can be improved as a tool to ensure policy debates are held in an open and honest way.
Brussels, September 2017 – The European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association (EPACA) welcomes the adoption of the own-initiative report on transparency, accountability and integrity in the EU institutions.
European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association adopts updated Code of Conduct
Brussels, Thursday 16 March 2017 — Today, the European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association held its Annual General Meeting and unanimously adopted an updated version of its Code of Conduct. The EPACA Code of Conduct is the benchmark for other European codes on public affairs and interest representation, in both Brussels and member states. It regulates EPACA members’ conduct towards other stakeholder, and emphasises transparency.
Brussels, 16 March 2017 – The first prize of the seventh John Houston EPACA ESSAY CONTEST 2016 was handed over by Jean Claude Lahaut, member of the EPACA Professional Practices Panel to François Barry from Cambre Associates during EPACA’s Annual General Meeting, 16 March 2017. The jury is composed of the members of the EPACA Professional Practice Panel: Lisette Tiddens-Engwirda, Jean Claude Lahaut. The John Houston EPACA 2017 Essay Contest, with the topic “A world of distrust: how does it affect Public Affairs”, aimed to highlight the Public Affairs profession and bring recognition to young practitioners. Young talents under the age of 30 and working for consultancies member of EPACA were invited to take part in shaping our profession by sharing their views and experiences in an essay competition. The Jury was the members of our Professional Practices Panel. François Barry was unanimously designated by our Jury as the winner. His essay showed both talent and originality! Runners up in the contest were Saagar Dattani, from GPlus Europe ranking second, and Andrea Tognoni from Cambre Associates ranking third. We congratulate them for the excellent quality of their essays.
Brussels, Thursday 16 March 2017 — Today, the European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association held its Annual General Meeting and unanimously adopted an updated version of its Code of Conduct.
Brussels, 31 January 2017 – On 31 January, the European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association (EPACA) hosted an event as part of the EPACA Skills Development Programme – A comparative look at various codes of conduct in member states. The event focused on the national codes of conduct of the UK, France, and Ireland, with panellists from the respective national Public Affairs Associations. The debate served to highlight the different registers and requirements in place in relation to lobbying transparency. The differences can be seen not only at EU level where Member State approaches vary, but also domestically where certain countries – the UK in particular – operate a variety of systems.
Brussels, 20 January 2017 – Yesterday, the European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association (EPACA), the Society of European Affairs Professionals (SEAP) and The European Centre for Public Affairs (the ECPA) hosted a joint event – The Lobbyist of the Future. With Lies Craeynest, Policy Advisor, Oxfam, Renatte Georgescu, European External Affairs at Unilever and Vice-President at SEAP and Karen Massin, CEO Brussels at Burson-Marsteller and Board Member at EPACA, and a group of headhunters the debate centred on the future of lobbying in an evolving environment.
Brussels, 17 January 2017 – The European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association proudly invites young Public Affairs professionals to participate in the sixth John Houston EPACA Essay Contest. Following the tradition of the contest, EPACA wishes to continue to promote the Public Affairs profession by recognizing original thought and writing talent. We encourage young Public Affairs professionals to help shape attitudes both within our profession and outside, by sharing your views and experiences in an essay competition.
The event will focus on the national codes of conduct of Austria, France, Ireland and the UK with panelists from the respective national Public Affairs Associations. Our aim is to bring together key people from the member states, to explore the issues under consideration and stimulate a discussion about the future of transparency in the EU and on a national level. The discussion will be moderated by EPACA and we will be inviting our members to contribute to the conversation.
The European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association welcomes the Commission’s proposal for an inter-institutional agreement on a mandatory Transparency Register. EPACA urges the three institutions to engage in constructive negotiations with the objective to create a robust and inclusive register that strengthens the transparency in EU’s decision-making. It is reassuring to see that the Commission continues its efforts to strengthen the Transparency Register. We are especially encouraged by the inclusion of the Council, and that the proposal suggests that only registered entities can interact with key members or officials from the three institutions.
Brussels, 6 September 2016 – On 6 September, the European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association (EPACA) and Transparency International hosted a joint event – Transparency, Accountability and Integrity in the EU Institutions: The future of the Transparency Register. With panellists representing the European Commission, the European Ombudsman, and academia, the debate centred on the ongoing work to revise the EU Transparency Register.
Brussels, 6 June 2016 – Today, organisations representing a large cross-section of lobbyists called for strong reform of the EU’s lobby register. The joint letter, initiated by Transparency International EU and signed by EPACA, calls for mandatory rules for all lobbyists and demands greater transparency around who EU officials and politicians meet with. The fact that consultancies, in-house lobbyists, lawyers and the leading Transparency NGO share the same basic views on the future of the register is a great start, we very much look forward to the continued discussion with the EU institutions” said Karl Isaksson, EPACA’s Chairman.
Brussels, 30 May 2016 – Today, EPACA submitted its views on the Public Consultation on a proposal for a mandatory Transparency Register after consultations with the membership. We continue arguing for greater transparency and a level-playing field.
Brussels, 7 May 2016 – The Public Affairs Community of Europe (P.A.C.E.), which gathers lobbyists’ national associations in the EU and public affairs professionals, held its sixths EU annual meeting on May 6th – 7th in Bucharest, hosted by the Romanian Lobbying Registry Association.
Brussels, 2 May 2016 – EPACA Chairman Karl Isaksson attended as panelist the EU Lobbying Transparency Public Debate – HAVE YOUR SAY
Karl Isaksson was invited by First Vice-President of the European Commission, Mr Frans Timmermans, and MEP Sylvie Giullaume to speak at a public debate hosted on 2 May in the European Parliament. The European Parliament and the European Commission are committed to being open about the interest groups and organisations with which they interact and have set up the joint Transparency Register to help make the EU decision-making process more transparent and allow for public scrutiny. The European Commission is presently running a public consultation to prepare a proposal for an Interinstitutional Agreement on a mandatory Transparency Register.
Madrid, 16 March 2016 – EPACA Chairman Karl Isaksson attended as panelist the event organized by Kreab “Corporate Transparency Summit”
Corporate Transparency Summit is the annual landmark event on corporate transparency in Spain. It seeks to become a space for collectively thinking and learning about the rules of the game of the new “observation society” and about the implications that the increasing demand for transparency has for companies.
Brussels, 10 March 2016 – The first prize of the sixth John Houston EPACA ESSAY CONTEST 2016 was handed over by Lisette Tiddens-Engwirda, member of the EPACA Professional Practices Panel to Katalin Jakucs from Kreab during EPACA’s Annual General Meeting, 10 March 2016. The jury is composed of the members of the EPACA Professional Practice Panel: Lisette Tiddens, Alain Perroy, John Bowis and Tom Spencer.
Brussels – 15 January 2016
The European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association proudly invites young Public Affairs professionals to participate in the sixth EPACA Essay Contest.
To honour the memory of EPACA’s first Chairman, we have renamed the competition the John Houston EPACA Essay Contest. Few people played an equally huge role for the Public Affairs industry in Brussels. John was instrumental in creating the first Code of Conduct back in 1995, laying the foundation for the strong industry ethics we still abide by. The lobby environment in Brussels would certainly be different if it weren’t for John’s great work.
EPACA held today a skills development workshop, dedicated to “How to work with the Brussels media corps” at the Press Club Brussels Europe.
This workshop aimed to develop a practical understanding of the workings of the Brussels media corps – print, broadcast and online: what are their needs and how to and how NOT to work with them!
Brussels – 27 October – On 27 October, the European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association (EPACA) hosted an Ethics in Practice Workshop on the EPACA code of conduct and guidelines. EPACA holds a yearly event on the code which is the backbone of the organization.
Karl Isaksson, Chairman of EPACA, gave the opening remarks by providing the history of the organization and the origins of the EPACA code. Worth noticing is that it was the industry who took the initiative 20 years ago in order to set some basics rules to how lobbying and public affairs work should be conducted.
Brussels – 19 June 2015 – EPACA has over the past decade been at the forefront in promoting the highest professional standards for the Brussels public affairs sector.
Launching the EPACA Charter is the logical next step in consolidating this work.
Brussels, 9 May 2015- The Public Affairs Community of Europe (P.A.C.E.), which gathers lobbyists’ national associations in the EU and public affairs professionals, will organize its fifth EU annual meeting on May 7th -8th in Vienna, hosted by the Austrian Public Affairs Association (www.oepav.at).
Brussels, 11 May 2015 – EPACA Chairman Karl Isaksson attended as panelist the event hosted by the European Ombudsman “Is Brussels the new Washington, D.C.?” Lobbying transparency in the EU.
Brussels is fast becoming the second most important lobbying hub in the world, after Washington, D.C.. Lobbying obviously plays an important role in functioning democracies. High ethical standards and pro-active transparency about lobbying are, however, key for citizens’ trust in EU decision-making.
Brussels, 20 March 2015 – The first prize of the fifth EPACA ESSAY CONTEST 2015 was handed over by Lisette Tiddens-Engwirda, members of the EPACA Professional Practices Panel to Anne Sauviat from FleishmanHillard during EPACA’s Annual General Meeting, 20 March 2015.
The jury is composed of the members of the EPACA Professional Practice Panel: Lisette Tiddens, Edit Herczog, John Bowis, Tom Spencer and Alain Perroy.
Brussels, 13 March 2015 – The European Youth Forum and leading employers last night launched their Employers’ Guide to Quality Internships, a “how-to guide” for employers wishing to establish quality schemes – with the aim to address and increase the quality of internships across Europe. The Employers’ Guide to Quality Internships has been developed with the contribution of the European Youth Forum partners Abbvie, Adecco Group, EPACA, EUK Consulting, Microsoft and TITAN CEMENT GROUP, who attended the launch event.
Nicosia, 26 February 2015 – EPACA Chairman, Karl Isaksson, was interviewed by the Financial Mirror, when he was in Cyprus to speak at a seminar on “Lifting the Lid on Lobbying” hosted by Transparency International-Cyprus at the Classic Hotel in Nicosia.
Brussels, Tuesday 27 January 2015 – viEUws just published in-depth video story “Juncker’s new lobbying rules”
Karl Isaksson was interviewed by viEUws on “Juncker’s new lobbying rules”
The European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association proudly invites young Public Affairs professionals to participate in the fifth EPACA ESSAY CONTEST 2015.
Following the outstanding success of the last couple of years’ competitions, EPACA wishes to continue to promote the Public Affairs profession by recognizing original thought and writing talent. We encourage young Public Affairs professionals to help to shape attitudes both within our profession and outside, by sharing your views and experiences in an essay competition.
Brussels 2 October – Emily O’Reilly marked her first year in office as the European Union’s Ombudsman on Wednesday (1 October) but her gloves are only coming off now. The EPACA Charler launch in mentioned in the article. The Irish woman has launched more investigations than any of her predecessors in their first year. But identigying problems and launching investigations is the easy part of the job. “Now the hard work begins,” she acknowledged. “Next year will be the time to execute”.
Brussels, 10 July 2014 – The Joint Transparency Register has made the public affairs sector more open, but there are limits to what it can achieve. The European Union’s flagship measure for controlling how stakeholders participate in the legislative process is the Joint Transparency Register, a public database jointly run by the European Parliament and the European Commission.
Brussels, 15 April 2014 – The European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association (EPACA) today welcomed the European Parliament’s adoption in plenary of the report on the modification of the Transparency Register’s inter-institutional agreement.
EPACA has been supporting partner of the Model European Union (MEU) 2014, a large scale simulation of how the EU decision-making process works.
EPACA joined the seventh edition, which took place last week at the European Parliament in Strasbourg, as a representative of an important jigsaw of the EU decisional puzzle. A workshop with a group of the MEU delegates gave us the opportunity to explain the role of the European Public Affairs Consultancies and their representative body, EPACA, and to discuss the challenges faced by public affairs professionals.
Seminar on Integrity in Lobbying
Karl Isaksson attended as panellist, the High-Level Panel on National, Supranational and Transnational Lobbying Practices and Risks
Brussels, 31 March 2014 – The first prize of the fourth EPACA ESSAY CONTEST 2014 was handed over by Lisette Tiddens-Engwirda and Alain Perroy, members of the EPACA Professional Practices Panel to Alessia Mortara from FleishmanHillard during EPACA’s Annual General Meeting, 28 March 2014.
Brussels, 28 March 2014 – EPACA held its General Assembly followed by a Guest Speech by Carl Dolan, Director at Transparency International EU liaison office, where gave us an update on their recently published EU Corruption report, titled “We Have an EU Corruption Report: So Now What?”, followed by a Q&A session?
BRUSSELS – Political advocacy, or lobbying if you like, is of paramount importance to ensuring that political decision-makers understand the implications of the legislation they adopt. The EU’s political system is a very open one where most decision-makers, be it civil servants in the European Commission or politicians in the European Parliament, appreciate input from external stakeholders and are open to facts and arguments. This input makes for better legislation.
The joint working group of the European Parliament Bureau and the European Commission has finalised its work on the revision of the EU Transparency Register. The main outcome is an understanding among the working group members that the register should become mandatory, even if their conclusion are that it is not legally possible at the present time.
BRUSSELS – It is no secret that there is a big divide between EU decision-makers and the public.
The European Transparency Register, the EU’s database for lobbyists, is currently under scrutiny as it set to be reformed by the end of 2013. Above all, the register needs more resources and to get rid of its loopholes, if Brussels wants a fair public affairs level playing field, Karl Isaksson says.
Brussels, 8 July 2013 – “If Winter comes can Spring be far behind?”
Tom Spencer, member of the EPACA Professional Practice Panel, launched an article on his blog.
Brussels, 28 June 2013 – EPACA Management Committee member, Rory Macrae, spoke today, the 27th of June 2013, at the ‘Global Europe’ workshop at the University of Kent, Brussels School of International Studies (BSIS).
Paris, 27-28 June 2013 – EPACA Vice-Chair, Rob Mack, was on the panel at the OECD Forum on Transparency and Integrity in Lobbying: How to Win Back Trust?in Paris 27-28 June, discussing ‘Compliance and enforcement: How to make transparency and integrity in lobbying a reality?’
In a letter published in European Voice last week, (“Impossible to ignore lobbying concerns”, 23-29 May), Koen Roovers from ALTER-EU claims that EPACA, the European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association, fiercely opposes stronger rules on the lobbyist profession.
Review process leads to strengthened commitments
EPACA, the European Public Affairs Consultancies’ Association, today officially published their revised Code of Practice. The code has been amended to reflect more closely current public affairs practices. It extends the scope of the code to cover all activities undertaken by EPACA members in the context of their public affairs work.
Brussels, 15 March 2013 – EPACA held its General Assembly followed by a Panel Discussion, where Gerard Legris from the Transparency Register, Jana Mittermaier from Transparency International and Julio Bacio Terracino from OECD, discussed “The Future of Public Affairs and Lobbying”.
Brussels, 18 March 2013 – The first prize of the EPACA contest 2013 was handed over by John Bowis and Tom Spencer, members of the EPACA Professional Practices Panel to Ariane Pond-Hubert from Sarah Biontino Consultants during EPACA’s Annual General Meeting.
EPACA believes that any further amendments to the Transparency Register and its requirements upon registrants should be legislated and mandatory, with clearly explained requirements that apply equally to all lobbyists. As such, we do not necessarily oppose the disclosure of more information per se. Rather, we oppose the disclosure of more information through the current voluntary structure of the register.
Brussels, 12 January 2013 – EPACA members gathered on 9 January for an informal discussion with representatives from the European Parliament on best and worst lobby practices.
Brussels, 10 January 2013 – EPACA’s Chairman, Karl Isaksson, participated a panel discussion entitled “Bringing Closed-Door Dealings to Light: How Transparency Can Change Lobbying Practices” about transparency practices in different parts of the world, held during the 15th International Anti-Corruption Conference in Brasilia in November 2012.
Brussels, 14 March 2012 – The first prize of the EPACA contest 2012 was handed over by Alain Perroy, member of the EPACA Professional Practices Panel and Jose Lalloum to Nora Delaney from from APCO Worldwide during EPACA’s Annual General Meeting.
Brussels, 10 May 2011 – Both organisations, EPACA and SEAP, support current efforts within the European Parliament to review its internal rules to improve ethics and the transparency of the Institution.
As we have stated before, any efforts to develop policies on transparency within the EU institutions that go beyond the content of the draft agreement on the establishment of a joint ‘Transparency Register’ would be best handled through mandatory legislation with specific, clear definitions applied equally to all lobbyists, whether housed in an NGO, a consultancy, a law firm, an association, a company, a think-tank or anywhere else.
Brussels, 21 March 2011 – EPACA stands for an ethical and irreproachable approach to lobbying.
The behaviour revealed by the Sunday Times investigation, if replicated by a real lobbyist, would clearly be a severe violation of the EPACA Code of Conduct: offering financial inducement is just as immoral and reprehensible as it is to accept it.
Brussels, 23 March 2012 – EPACA notes the Commission’s decision not to review further the complaint made by EPACA about CEO’s untransparent lobbying.