cooperationI spent most of this afternoon, together with my counterpart at the Committee of the Regions, Gerhard Stahl, in a joint meeting with the Directors and Deputy Directors of our so-called ‘Joint Services’. These meetings are regular occurrences and an obligation under the Cooperation Agreement that both Committees signed in order effectively to govern their pooled resources. So ,we discussed our joint budgetary policy, business continuity, a strategy for the maintenance and renovation of our buildings, personnel policy (our flexitime pilot project is going rather well) and preparations for the political-level meeting, the Political Monitoring Group, that caps our cooperation and provides political guidance. Inevitably, the meetings are a long slog, but the atmosphere is excellent and I persist in believing that our two Committees are setting an example to the other institutions.