Just into its first working week, the new European Commission, the group of 20 that manages the European Union's (EU) day-to-day operations, is distinguished in part by its background in industry and economics. Romano Prodi, the commission's president, is a former Italian minister for industry and a professor of industrial organization and policy. Mario Monti, the EU's antitrust chief, is a former economics professor. Pedro Solbes Mira, who oversees economic and monetary affairs, is a former Spanish minister of economics and finance. And trade commissioner Pascal Lamy was most recently director-general of Crédit Lyonnais, the French financial giant.