Guide to Decision Making in the EU

  1. Legislative Procedures
  2. Comitology

Legislative Procedures

The EU’s legislative procedures can be classified under two headings:

  • Ordinary Legislative Procedure – previously known as co-decision, referring to joint decision-making by the European Parliament and Council.
  • Special Legislative Procedures – covers the consultation, cooperation and assent procedures as provided for in previous Treaties.

In addition to these, the EU also has a detailed Budgetary Procedure.

For more on legislative procedures, please see our guide.


When a measure is agreed in ordinary legislative procedure, certain technical or implementation aspects can be left to be determined, after the measure’s approval, by the Commission. The Commission is assisted by committees composed of Member State representatives. This consultative process is known as comitology. For more about comitology, please refer to our guide.