Lobbying, Inside and Out: How Special Interest Groups Influence Policy Choices

35 Pages Posted: 17 Dec 2012 Last revised: 15 Jun 2018

See all articles by Stephane Wolton

Stephane Wolton

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Department of Government

Date Written: March 7, 2017

Abstract

A decision-maker chooses the scope of a reform and anti- and pro-change Special Interest Groups (SIGs) use inside lobbying (i.e. contributions, transfer of information) to bias its content and outside lobbying (i.a. political advertising) to affect its fate. In equilibrium, inside lobbying expenditures are associated with policy compromises, a mark of anti-change SIG influence; outside lobbying activities with comprehensive reforms, a sign of pro-change SIG power. Nonetheless, I find that regressions using inside lobbying as a proxy --- as most empirical studies do --- are likely to yield downwardly biased estimates of SIG influence even absent competition between SIGs or substitutable lobbying activities.

Keywords: special interest group, inside lobbying, outside lobbying, power, threat, promise

JEL Classification: D70, D72, D74, D78, D82

Suggested Citation

Wolton, Stephane, Lobbying, Inside and Out: How Special Interest Groups Influence Policy Choices (March 7, 2017). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2190685 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2190685

Stephane Wolton (Contact Author)

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Department of Government ( email )

Houghton Street
London, WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom

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