Historical Archives Service (HAEU)

Source: Europa Nu.

The Historical Archives Service conserves, manages and makes available for further use the Commission historical archives. The archives can be consulted in a centrally-located reading room near the main EU offices in Brussels. The archives repositories are situated on three sites, two in Brussels and one in Luxembourg.

The mission of the Historical Archives Services is twofold:

  • assisting the Commission services in the management of their archives
  • ensuring the opening to public access of the archives older than 30 years.

The Historical Archives Service works for a diversity of users: staff from the Commission and other EU institutions, national civil services, universities, journalists, lawyers, etc.

Internal duties

  • managing transfers of archives from the Commission services
  • ensuring the proper storage and processing of these archives
  • assist Commission staff in retrieving information from the archives.

Archival processing

  • selecting which files have historical, legal or administrative value and should thus be stored permanently
  • eliminating all those archives who do not have value anymore (while still keeping a record of their existence)
  • describing the selected archives, to support users' researches
  • ensuring the proper preservation of the archives and producing microfiches to facilitate consultation.
  • declassifying documents to allow their disclosure
  • transferring the original files to the European University Institute in Florence for long-term storage.

Services for the public

  • making available for consultation documents over 30 years old in a public reading room
  • producing search tools to help users

The legal basis of the Historical Archives Service (and of the archives services of the other EU institutions) is Council regulation 354/83 (amended by regulation 1700/2003).