Integrity Pacts – Civil Control Mechanism for Safeguarding EU Funds

Integrity Pacts – Civil Control Mechanism for Safeguarding EU Funds

Inguna Kramina
DG REGIO unit E.1


The pilot project on the use of Integrity Pacts is a cooperation between DG REGIO and Transparency International. The aim is to involve civil society in public procurement processes funded by Cohesion Policy. An Intergrity Pact (IP) is an agreement between a public buyer, companies bidding for a contract and a civil society organisation. The public authority and the businesses agree to abstain form corrupt practices and allows for an independent civil society monitor to follow the procurement process and get access to documents and information from the planning throughout the implementation of an EU (Cohesion funded) project.

The pilot is being tested in 17 procurments within different sectors in 11 Member States. In 2019 the project won the EU ombudsman award for Good Administration in the category of “excellence in open administration”.

Participation Spectrum

When and Where

Start Year
End Year

Policy Context

Policy Stage
Context of activity
CSO are involved from beginning til the end of public procurements
Science or Policy Field
Specific Topic
The project is under the unit for Administrative Capacity Building and covers two issues: work against corruption/fraud and work to improve public procurement.


Communities or representatives involved
Various civil society organisations.
How were the Participants selected?
Through what means citizens knew about the call for participation?
CSOs were selected after an open call where procurement processes in 11 MS where authorities were willing to test the IP model were announced. Social media have been used both by Transparency International and DG REGIO to promote the project.


Methodologies used
Methodology description
The Integrity Pact methodology was developed by Transparency International. We have used their methodology but adapted to a Cohesion Policy setting starting with an open call for authorities with suitable projects that would be interested in taking part in the pilot, followed by an open call for civil society organisations that could provide monitoring of the selected projects.
Tools Used
Spaces Used


Main Outcomes and Lasting Achievement
The pilot will provide insight in how the IP model works in a Cohesion Policy context. Based on the results of the pilot DG REGIO will assess how to scale up and continue the use of the IP model or elements of it in our future policy.
How were the outcome taken up within the process they were carried out?
The pilot is still ongoing, so it's too early to say. But preliminary results are looking promising, and DG REGIO is alreday considering ways of building on the pilot.
Feedback provided
Other Feedback
TI Secretariat manages the day-to-day contact. In addition we have annual meetings.
Were the methodologies used elsewhere?
The IP model has been taken up in other places both within and outside of EU. The model was developed by Transparency International and had been tested several places ahead of our joint pilot.


Reason for such challenges and solutions
Many of the procurements that are being followed up through the pilot are facing delays (not due to the project). Because of this the pilot has been extended to last until the end of 2021, rather than originally until 2016. It can also be a challenge to find CSOs with the right competence and capacity to follow such complex projects.
Lessons Learn
Too early to say, the project is still ongoing.
Too early to say, the project is still ongoing.