The latest edition of the EUR-Lex newsletter is now available. The August edition highlights some improvements made to the site e.g. legislation results lists now include ‘No longer in force’ and ‘Not yet in force’, in addition to ‘In force’, clarifying the legal status of the documents concerned. They are colour-coded: green – in force; yellow – not yet in force and red – no longer in force.
A new feature on EUR-Lex will be of interest to anyone following an EU legislative procedure closely. There is a now an option in “My EUR-Lex account” enabling you to follow legislative procedures via RSS. Just click on the “Follow this procedure” button in the “procedure view” to create a custom RSS feed that will alert you whenever a new event has been added.
EUR-Lex accounts are free and easy to set up. Just click on the “Register” button on the top right of the Eur-Lex homepage.
Find out more about RSS feeds on EUR-Lex here or have a look at this short tutorial, but keep in mind that it was produced before the new feature was added.
The EU Publications Office maintains a Summaries of EU Legislation page on the EUR-Lex site. It provides straight-forward and easily navigable explanations of the main aspects of EU legislation, policies and activities. Included in the 32 topics covered on the site are: agriculture, education, environment, human rights and justice. There is a search function allowing you to search within summaries. Currently there is a short user survey being run for those interested in providing some feedback.
EUR-Lex is the official EU database for accessing EU law. It is available in 24 languages and includes treaties, legislation, international agreements, preparatory acts, case law and parliamentary questions. It also gives access to the Official Journal of the European Union.
Help on using the different search options and features on EUR-Lex is available by watching these informative online tutorials. We have also produced our own guide.
However if you are just looking for someplace where EU is explained for a general audience in a concise and jargon-free language a good place to start is here.
Here is an example of one of the online tutorials. Why not have a look.
Last October we told you about a useful source of EU information called Info-Europa, a weekly newsletter that collated the latest information on EU legislation and proposed legislation. It was put together by Patrick Overy, who is based at the European Documentation Centre at the University of Exeter. Sadly this newsletter is being discontinued after 420 issues as the London Office of the European Commission which hosts this newsletter is re-designing its website and will no longer be able to host it in future.
An annual roundup of publications from 2015 based on last year’s newsletters is now available on Exeter’s EDC pages. Find it here. This list of official publications is categorised by subject and contains all major Commission documents in the following series: COM(Commission), JOIN (Joint Action), SEC (Secretariat) and SWD (Staff working document), together with a selection of major new pieces of legislation and press releases from the RAPID database and publications from other EU agencies, including the European Environment Agency and Eurostat.
The format of Info-europa is based on the Spanish newsletter still being produced weekly by Alfonso Moreira of the European Documentation Centre at the University of Valencia . To subscribe send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or contact email@example.com.
A good way to keep update is a source we have mentioned before from the European Documentation Centre at the University if Cardiff, European Sources Online, which updates information on a daily basis.
And here are some other sources we haven’t mentioned before:
Statewatch which monitors all aspects of civil liberties and human rights in Europe. Regular newsletters are mailed to subscribers. The service is free to use but donations are welcome to support their work;
If you have hyperlinks in your work referring to the old website, please be aware there will be no automatic redirection between the old site and the current one. You will need to replace them with links leading to the new version of EUR-Lex.
Having provided access to both the old and new versions since the new one was rolled out earlier this year, EUR-lex have recently announced that the old version will be taken down permanently on 31st December 2015. Any links to the old site will not work after that date.