Preparatory Action on Transparency in Public Procurement


General information

The Publications Office of the EU is responsible for the implementation of the Preparatory Action “Transparency in public procurement”. A Preparatory Action (PA) is designed to test a novel policy idea in an area where the European Union has competency but no relevant basic act exists which would allow the Union to spend any money.

A significant amount of public investment is spent through public procurement, and e-procurement is beneficial in fighting fraud, results in savings for all parties, increased transparency, and simplified and shortened processes.

Transparency is at the centre of this Preparatory Action and the common denominator of all actions foreseen for its implementation. The Publications office identified four areas of activity that revolve around TED data: availability, quality, readability and interoperability. Various projects will concur to the implementation of the PA. A visual illustration of the foreseen actions is displayed below.

In order to foster data quality, our project focuses on data curation, through the use of Artificial Intelligence and machine learning.

The result of our work on data quality will positively impact data readability, where we put forward projects on data visualization. We expect to implement user-friendly, clear and self-explanatory visualization of relevant data in TED, using graphics, dynamic tools and machine translation.

Projects on data quality will further automatize exchange and validation of data between national authorities and TED in order to limit discrepancies and errors, reduce red tape and facilitate reuse. This in turn will favor data interoperability, specifically by making TED data available as Linked Open Data (LOD). Once this is achieved, it can enable practical applications, such as looking at how much of the EU budget is spent through public procurement and how EU funds are spent in specific regions.

Last but not least, the PA intends to promote data availability by means of awareness raising campaigns for the Public Procurement Data Space (PPDS) as well as by collecting and sharing best practices, ideas and reaching a broader audience.

Overall, through the PA we expect to promote innovative projects to increase the completeness, accuracy, accessibility and readability of TED data, thus completely covering the mandate entrusted to us by the European Parliament.