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Opinion: Criteria, structure and examples of external contributions

Definition and criteria for inclusion

  • An opinion piece (OpEd) is an external contribution which looks at a particular European policy issue from a more detached point of view, taking a general interest perspective.

  • OpEds often come from think tanks or researchers, but also from leading opinion makers, EU institutions, national ministers or members of parliament. They may also originate from civil society, including non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and private interest groups. Authors should clearly indicate in a transparent way the interests and organisations they represent.

  • To qualify for publication, OpEd articles need to take a stance on EU policy, often making recommendations on a particular issue. Lobbying pieces which self-promote an organisation will not be published as an OpEd.

  • An editor’s approval is always needed before publication.

Structure and publication

  • OpEds should be grammatically well-written and ideally be 700-800 words in length. Pieces containing language mistakes or exceeding 1,000 words will not be processed.

  • EURACTIV may rarely edit OpEds, but does not commit to doing so.

  • OpEds are preferably original pieces published in extenso, with the author’s explicit approval. When republishing from external sources, EURACTIV provides a hyperlink to the original website (e.g.: Project Syndicate, think-tanks and NGOs such as EURACTIV’s content partners, etc.)

  • The title and abstract of OpEds reflect EURACTIV’s choice in underlining the relevance of the piece submitted. The title is kept the same as the original if it does fit EURACTIV’s criteria, i.e: short, easy to understand and snappy. The abstract is a summary in maximum 60 words, connecting with current EU policy debates.

  • Submitted pieces feature a topical picture that illustrates the contents addressed in the piece, not that of its author. Selected by the editor, suggestions of potential pictures (with full indication of rights holders) can be made to

Examples and languages

  • OpEds can be submitted in English, French or German. Titles and abstracts may be translated by EURACTIV in the other language versions. Opinions in further European languages are welcome by most members of the EURACTIV Network.

  • All contributors are invited to read how others have structured their OpEds by visiting EURACTIV’s Opinions page. It will help. Here are some examples of previously published pieces:​​​


  • Whenever needed, the liaison contact is

  • For OpEds with a suggested publication date, do send us a copy of your (near) final text at least 2 working days in advance.

  • EURACTIV does not need to justify its choices, but will usually reply within 3 working days.

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