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Understanding EU Decision-Making: Principles, Procedures, Practice

Understanding EU Decision-Making: Principles, Procedures, Practice

“I’m going to that meeting in Brussels next week. Is it an expert group or a comitology committee?”
“I need to brief the boss about what to expect. Will the Commission ask her to vote?”
“How can I know where our issue is in the EU decision process, and what comes next?”

Simple questions, the answers to which may be complex, and yet can make your job easier. This course will get you up to speed on the essential elements of how the EU system works: the different powers that the EU has, who does what, and how you can have a role in shaping EU decisions. It is concise but thorough, and focusses in detail on EU law-making.

You will also receive insights as to what to expect from the new European Parliament and European Commission.

Who is this course for:

  • Officials who have taken on a new role in Brussels
  • Officials who have to take part in meetings in the Commission or Council
  • Anyone who needs to know how EU decision-making works in practice

Course methodology

  • Extensive insights with multiple examples and real life cases
  • Group exercises
  • Role plays and simulation games
  • Inputs from experienced EU practitioners.

After-course support

In order to help retain and deepen the knowledge acquired afterwards, you will receive a copy of Edward Best’s 2016 book Understanding EU Decision-Making, published with the support of the EU Publications Office.

Don’t have much exposure to EU decision-making, or want to refresh your knowledge?

You can also participate in the optional preliminary module the afternoon before the course date, covering the basics. If you are not sure you are familiar with the basics, and as you have to be in town by this date anyway, we recommend that you attend this module, to be able to make the most of the intensive course and immerse yourself in the detailed exercises over the following days.

In the basic module, you will be introduced to:

  • the legal bases for what the EU can and cannot do
  • the main ways in which decisions are taken
  • the different powers that Member States have given to the EU
  • the roles and structures of the EU institutions

If you feel you need to participate in this module, you can register for the Course plus preliminary module.


4 Mar 2020 @ 09:00 am

6 Mar 2020 @ 01:00 pm

Duration: 2 days, 4 hours


EIPA Maastricht

22 Onze Lieve Vrouweplein

6211 HE Maastricht


Organised by


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