The Institute for Public Policy (Romania) and its partner, Green Policy Institute (Bulgaria), have published a comparative report on the transparency and effectiveness of the use of EU Structural Funds in Romania and Bulgaria, available here.  Despite large allocations from EU Structural Funds for the period 2007-2013 (Romania, with a population of approximately 21 million, has a total financial allocation of €19.8 billion, while Bulgaria, with a population of approximately 7.6 million, has a total financial allocation of approximately €8 billion), the rate of absorption of the EU money into local economies is below 20% in both countries. The report makes a set of recommendations to increase the effectiveness of funds’ management during the current programming period, and for future steps to be taken in the next programming period. The report results from a BTD-supported project aiming to provide an accurate and objective overview of the structural funds’ management; to advocate for increased government accountability to citizens and the European Commission regarding the management of EU funds; and to support increased civil society participation and a results-oriented focus in the next programming cycle.