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Emily O'Reilly

The European Ombudsman, Emily O'Reilly, works with the institutions, agencies and bodies of the European Union to achieve the highest standard of administrative practices possible for the benefit of European citizens. She does so through addressing people's concerns voiced in complaints made to her Office and on her own initiative through her strategic work. The Ombudsman believes that the European Union already has high administrative standards however needs to set the 'gold standard' in terms of public administration and in its interaction with citizens. Therefore, she supports the institutions, bodies and agencies of the European Union through suggestions and recommendations on how to improve their work.

Emily O'Reilly

My ambition is to support the EU institutions in becoming more effective, transparent and accountable by strategically increasing the visibility and impact of the work of the European Ombudsman.

Emily O'Reilly, 30 June 2014


The European Ombudsman is an independent and impartial body that holds the EU’s institutions and bodies to account, as well as promoting good administration. The Ombudsman helps people, businesses and organisations facing problems with the EU’s administration by investigating complaints about maladministration by EU institutions and bodies, but also by proactively looking into broader systemic issues.


Emily O’Reilly was first elected as the European Ombudsman in July 2013. Following the European Parliament elections, she was re-elected for a five year mandate in December 2014 and again in December 2019. Previously, she had been Ireland's first female Ombudsman and Information Commissioner, having been appointed in 2003, and Commissioner for Environmental Information from 2007. Emily O’Reilly is an author and a former journalist and broadcaster, whose career has attracted significant domestic and international recognition.

Ethics and Conduct

European Ombudsman Emily O'Reilly strongly believes that, in order to fully guarantee public trust, the EU’s institutions must operate as a citizen-friendly, accountable and transparent service, and adhere to the highest ethical standards. The Ombudsman’s Office is committed to fully respecting, among others, the principles of integrity and accountability in all our activities. In addition to adopting the Code of Conduct for the Ombudsman in February 2015, the material in the Ethics and conduct section of the website aims at fulfilling this commitment, including by providing full transparency about the Ombudsman's conduct and use of resources.