PRESS RELEASE, 27 August 2001

EIPA AWARDS ALEXIS DE TOCQUEVILLE PRIZE 2001 TO EUROPEAN OMBUDSMAN

The European Institute of Public Administration has awarded the Alexis de Tocqueville Prize 2001 to European Ombudsman, Jacob Söderman, for his considerable contribution to improving public administration in Europe.

EIPA's Scientific Council and Board of Governors chose Mr. Söderman for his tireless work to improve access to documents for European citizens and to increase transparency as regards the functioning of the European Union institutions. As European Ombudsman since 1995, he has helped to enhance the consideration given by the European public administration to people's rights. He has contributed to increasing knowledge of the EU administration. Furthermore, his reports are a major element of European administrative science. A legal expert by training, Mr. Söderman has been parliamentary ombudsman of Finland, as well as a member of the Finnish Parliament and of the Finnish Government (Minister of Justice, Minister of Social Affairs and Health).

2001 marks the eighth occasion that EIPA will award the Alexis de Tocqueville Prize to commemorate the eminent political scientist, historian, philosopher and politician. Previous recipients include the Italian Professor Sabino Cassese and the Spanish Professor Eduardo García de Enterría, two outstanding scholars in public and administrative law who were awarded the Prize in 1997 and 1999 respectively. In 1989, H.E. Otto von der Gablentz received the Prize for his work in modernising the operations of the diplomatic corps within the framework of bilateral relations between EC Member States. Lord Rayner was the first to receive the Prize in 1988 for his key role in modernising the central government and Civil Service of the UK.

The award ceremony will take place in Maastricht on 21 November 2001 and will form part of the 20th anniversary celebrations of EIPA.

For more information, please contact:

Professor Gérard Druesne, Director General EIPA (+31 43 - 3296202)

or visit:

http://eipa.nl

For more information about the European Ombudsman, please visit:

http://www.euro-ombudsman.eu.int



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