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The Research Executive Agency's (REA) refusal to grant public access to projects that received funding under the Horizon 2020 programme, with ethics requirements

The complainant sought from the Research Executive Agency a table of applications that received funding under the Horizon 2020 programme, with conditional ethics clearance, as well as the grant agreements related to these applications. The REA argued that the requested information is stored in several databases, and cannot be extracted by a routine search operation. Therefore, the REA stated it does not hold such table and the corresponding grant agreements could not be identified. As such, it could not provide the complainant with the documents requested.

The Ombudsman opened an inquiry and sought to clarify certain issues with the REA.