Information or context: what accounts for positional proximity between the European Commission and lobbyists?

Patrick Bernhagen, Andreas Dür, David Marshall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

22 Citations (Scopus)
5 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Why are legislative proposals closer to the positions of some organized interests than others? The literature proposes that policy-makers are attentive to the demands of lobbyists that provide relevant information. At the same time, being part of a policy community is also claimed to enable lobbyists to shape
policy formulation. We argue that both factors reinforce each other: informational resources are particularly effective in reducing the gap between the Commission’s policy position and the position of lobbyists if both actors are part of the same policy community. Analysing data on over 100 policy issues in the European Union, we find that the context of a friendly Directorate-General reinforces the effectiveness of lobbyists’ informational resources. However, on its own, a context of friendly relations between the policy-maker and the lobbyist contributes little to explaining why the European Commission’s policy position is closer to some actors than to others.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)570-587
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of European Public Policy
Volume22
Issue number4
Early online date19 Feb 2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Keywords

  • EU Commission
  • information
  • institutional
  • context
  • lobbying
  • policy communities
  • spatial analysis

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