FIACAT & over 110 CSOs have signed a letter to Commissioner Hahn and Commissioner Jourov calling for contact details of Commission staff to be restored to the 'Whoiswho' directory The removal of details is a step back for institutional transparency



Mr. Johannes Hahn 

European Commissioner for Budget and Administration 

Ms. Vera Jourová 

Vice-President of the European Commission 

for Values and Transparency  

Brussels, 08 June 2023 


Dear Commissioner Hahn, 

Dear Commissioner Jourová, 


RE: Civil society call to restore the details of European Commission officials in the EU Whoiswho register 

We, European civil society organisations advocating for the accountability of institutions towards the public  and for civil dialogue, express our concern about the decision of the European Commission to remove the  details of civil servants below the Heads of Unit level from the official directory of the European Union  Whoiswho. 

Restricting access to officialslimits opportunities for civil dialogue and reduces institutional transparency at a time where this needs to be increasedmore than ever. This decision risks fostering inequity and bias, creating an environment where only those stakeholders with greater capacity and resources will be able to continue to engage with civil servants. Such an unbalanced representation of interests could open the door  to shady areas where undue influence can thrive, which is exactly what the Commission should be seeking  to avoid. 

Without access to contacts of key civil servants, activities such as sending relevant feedback, sharing  examples of gaps in policy implementation or inviting officials to events cannot take place. National civil  society organisations will no longer have the possibility to build and nurture relations with the desk officers  for their countries. Consequently, the Commission will be deprived of the input it seeks from the many and  diverse stakeholders civil society organisations represent, both when drafting and when implementing  policy. 

Moreover, restricting access to the full organigram will increase external pressure on the Heads of Unit  themselves, who will have to cope with the substantial amount of requests for information that will be  directed at them. 

The European Commission must create an open and transparent environment where access to information is made public as an essential pre-requisite for meaningful civil dialogue and democratic  participation. We call on the Commission to at least restore the details of civil servants that were made  available before the latest changes. 

We also wish further steps for even greater institutional transparency to be taken in the future, following  existing best practices from the Permanent Representations to the EU of Member States such as Sweden  or Finland who disclose names, phone numbers and email addresses of officials at all levels.

As the largest of the EU institutions, the only one with the right of initiative, and the one that has  traditionally demonstrated a greater level of transparency than the others, we believe the European  Commission should continue to set the example. 


Yours sincerely, 

Laura de Bonfils, Secretary General, Social Platform (letter’s initiator) 

Carlotta Besozzi, Coordinator, Civil Society Europe (letter’s initiator) 

Patrizia Heidegger, Deputy Secretary General, European Environmental Bureau 

Elizabeth Gosme, Director, COFACE Families Europe 

Antonella Valmorbida, Secretary General, ALDA 

Evelyne Paradis, Executive Director, ILGA-Europe 

Ariel Brunner, Regional Director, BirdLife Europe and Central Asia 

Anca Toma, Executive Director, European Patients’ Forum 

Jamen Gabriela Hrabaňová, Director, European Roma Grassroots Organisations (ERGO) Network Diana Dovgan, Secretary General, European Confederation of Industrial and Service Cooperatives (CECOP) Genon K. Jensen, Executive Director, Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL) 

Neva Nahtigal, Director, RREUSE 

Maciej Kucharczyk, Secretary General, AGE Platform Europe 

Patrizia Bussi, Director, European Network of Social Integration Enterprises (ENSIE) Gabriella Civico, Director, Centre for European Volunteering (CEV) 

Sabine Rehbichler, Managing Director, Arbeit plus 

Juliana Santos Wahlgren, Director, European Anti-Poverty Network (EAPN) 

Ghislain Stéphanie, Political Affairs Manager, Eurogroup for Animals 

Timothy Ghilain, Interim Chief Executive, European Association of Service Providers for People with  Disabilities (EASPD) 

Mathieu de Poorter, President, European Council of Associations of General Interest (CEDAG) Mikael Leyi, Secretary General, SOLIDAR 

Elisa Gambardella, Coordinator, SOLIDAR Foundation 

Lars Ebert, Secretary General, Culture Action Europe 

Catherine Naughton, Executive Director, European Disability Forum (EDF) 

Jagoda Munic, Executive Director, Friends of the Earth Europe

Ally Dunhill, Director of Policy, Advocacy & Communications, Eurochild 

Richard Köhler, Advocacy Director, TGEU 

Victor Petuya, President, European Parents' Association (EPA) 

Maria Nyman, Secretary General, Caritas Europa  

Stecy Yghemonos, Director, Eurocarers 

Ester Asin, Director, WWF European Policy Office  

Mark Jones, Head of Policy, Born Free Foundation 

Kim Smouter, Director General, European Network Against Racism (ENAR) aisbl Milka Sokolovic, Director General, European Public Health Alliance 

Staci McLennan, Director of Policy - Europe, International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) Valentina Bottarelli, Public Affairs Director& Head of European Advocacy, EURORDIS-Rare Diseases Europe Aurelie Baranger, Director, Autism-Europe 

Heather Roy, Secretary General, Eurodiaconia 

Max Rubisch, President, International Council on Social Welfare (ICSW) Europe 

Michele LeVoy, Director, Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM) Ken Godfrey, Executive Director, European Partnership for Democracy 

Grassy Lionel, Advocacy Director, FIACAT 

Leon Willems, Senior Advisor International Partnerships, Free Press Unlimited 

Meena Varma, Executive Director, International Dalit Solidarity Network 

Stephanie Futter-Orel, Executive Manager, Women Against Violence Europe (WAVE) Network Anita Bay, EU Director, Save the Children 

Balazs Denes, Executive Director, Civil Liberties Union for Europe (Liberties) 

Bent Noerby Bonde, Secretary General, Europe's People's Forum 

Piotr Sadowski, Secretary General, Volonteurope  

Maria van der Heide, Head of EU Policy, ShareAction  

Dominik Kirchdorfer, President, European Future Forum (EFF) 

Michael Thaidigsmann, Executive Director, EU Watch 

Ilaria Todde, Advocacy Director, Eurocentralasian Lesbian* Community (EL*C) 

Mae Ocampo, Executive Director, Protection International 

Milosh Ristovski, Secretary General, European Youth Forum

Aura Roig, Director, Metzineres SCCL 

Gianluca Coppola, President, European Digital Learning Network 

Paul Sommerfeld, Chair, TB Europe Coalition 

Ganna Dovbakh, Executive Director, Eurasian Harm Reduction Association (EHRA) Katrin Schiffer, Director, Correlation-European Harm Reduction Network  

Sudaba Shiraliyeva, Founder and Director, Center Women and Modern World 

Ines Bulic Cojocariu, Director, European Network on Independent Living - ENIL 

Miran Solinc, President, SKUC 

Annett Wiedermann, Director, YES Forum 

Chiara Martinelli, Director, Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe 

MartinePergent, President, International Patient Organisation for Primary Immunodeficiencies (IPOPI) Sini Pasanen, Executive Director, Positiiviset HivFinland 

Antoine Fobe, Head of Advocacy and Campaigning, European Blind Union (EBU) Rohwedder Jörg, Executive Director, Foodwatch International 

Colleen Daniels, Deputy Director, Harm Reduction International 

Alessandro Mostaccio, Secretary General, Movimento Consumatori APS 

Monica Verbeek, Executive Director, Seas At Risk 

Boleslwa Witmer, Steering Committee Member, Women for Water Partnership 

Matteo Vespa, President, European Students' Union (ESU) 

Domen Savič, CEO, Državljan D / Citizen D 

MichaelMeyer-Resende, Executive Director, Democracy Reporting International Jonathan Lee, Advocacy & Communications Director, European Roma Rights Centre Omri Preiss, Managing Director, Alliance4Europe 

Brikena Xhomaqi, Director, Lifelong Learning Platform 

Sarah de Heusch, Director, Social Economy Europe 

Tony Venables, Founder, ECIT foundation on European Citizenship 

Lavinia Liardo, Head of EU Policy and Advocacy, Terre des Hommes International Federation  Isaline Wittorski, Regional Coordinator, EUECPAT International 

Emili Pietro, Administrateur Delégué, Maison du Peuple d'Europe MPEVH 

Stefan Gies, Chief Executive, Association Européenne des Conservatoires, Académies de Musique et  Musikhochschulen (AEC)

Emilie Hornus, Secretary General, Youth Express Network 

Anelia Stefanova, Strategic Area Leader, CEE Bankwatch Network 

Mary Lynne Van Poelgeest, President, WFIPP 

Dam Philippe, EU Director, Human Rights Watch 

Miklos Barabas, Director European House 

JasmineO'Connor, Chief Executive Officer, Anti-Slavery International Céline Mias, Director and EU Representative, CARE International 

Lisa Goerlitz, Head of Brussels Office, DSW 

Claudia Marinetti, Director, Mental Health Europe 

Thomas Lohninger, Executive Director, - For Digital Rights Daniela Vancic, European Program Manager, Democracy International Elisa Lindinger, Managing Director, SUPERRR Lab 

Cherukéi Wobo, Policy & Advocacy Officer, Plan International EU Office Adrien Moyroud, Project Support Officer, Parkinson's Europe 

Giampaolo Silvestri, Secretary General, AVSI 

Fanny Hidvegi, Europe Policy and Advocacy Director, Access Now 

Jorgo Riss, Executive Director, Greenpeace European Unit 

Raul Sanchez, Secretary General, European Large Families Confederation (ELFAC) Felix Sames, Policy Manager, The Good Lobby 

Juan Rayon, President, Erasmus Student Network 

Alice Stollmeyer, Founder & Executive Director, Defend Democracy 

Anna Penfrat, EU Representative, Nonviolent Peaceforce 

Catherine Woollard, Director, European Council on Refugees and Exiles (ECRE) Tsveta Andreeva, Public Policy Manager, European Cultural Foundation Sonya Reines-Djivanides, Executive Director, European Peacebuilding Liaison Office Hanna Surmatz, Head of Policy, Philea 

Efthymis Antonopoulos, Senior Research and Policy Officer, Missing Children Europe Regina Ebner, Secretary General, European Association for the Education of Adults (EAEA) Ursula Pachl, Deputy Director General, BEUC 

Alexandrina Najmowicz, Secretary General, European Civic Forum