Advancing the Empirical Research on Lobbying

47 Pages Posted: 29 Nov 2013 Last revised: 30 Dec 2014

See all articles by John M. de Figueiredo

John M. de Figueiredo

Duke University School of Law; Duke University - Fuqua School of Business; National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER); Duke Innovation & Entrepreneurship Initiative

Brian Kelleher Richter

Multiple version iconThere are 3 versions of this paper

Date Written: November 27, 2013


This essay identifies the empirical facts about lobbying which are generally agreed upon in the literature. It then discusses challenges to empirical research in lobbying and provides examples of empirical methods that can be employed to overcome these challenges — with an emphasis on statistical measurement, identification, and casual inference. The essay then discusses the advantages, disadvantages, and effective use of the main types of data available for research in lobbying. It closes by discussing a number of open questions for researchers in the field and avenues for future work to advance the empirical research in lobbying.

Keywords: Lobbying, Interest Groups, Empirical Methods

JEL Classification: H11, P16, K0

Suggested Citation

de Figueiredo, John M. and Richter, Brian Kelleher, Advancing the Empirical Research on Lobbying (November 27, 2013). Available at SSRN: or

John M. De Figueiredo (Contact Author)

Duke University School of Law ( email )

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Duke University - Fuqua School of Business ( email )

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