Influence and Interests in the European Union: The New Politics of Persuasion and Advocacy

Influence and Interests in the European Union: The New Politics of Persuasion and Advocacy

Influence and Interests in the European Union: The New Politics of Persuasion and Advocacy

Influence and Interests in the European Union: The New Politics of Persuasion and Advocacy

Synopsis

Interest representation has become vital for anyone caught up in EU policies and policy-making--it both shapes and is shaped by the development of the EU. "Influence and Interests in the European Union: The New Politics of Persuasion and Advocacy examines the complexities of interest representation and clearly explains the impact and uses of interest representation in the development of the EU system. Chapters are contributed by a variety of leading practitioners, academics, researchers and other experts in the field who draw on original empirical work and/or participant observation.

Excerpt

Jenny Fairbrass and Alex Warleigh

This chapter introduces the volume by furnishing a common framework for the chapters that follow. The focal point of the book is provided by the subject of interest representation in the European Union (EU). The volume comprises contributions from both academics and practitioners. Together the chapters build on an extensive body of existing literature in the selected field by providing fresh empirical data and advancing the theoretical debate. The volume reports on and evaluates recent and novel developments in the activities, practices and strategies of those (be they state or non-state actors) who wish to be 'represented' to those who 'govern' in the EU. Additionally, some of the future challenges (e.g. the impact of EU enlargement) to the relationship between 'state' and 'society' in the EU, as mediated by or through a variety of structures and institutions, are examined. In sum, this chapter explores what is meant by the new politics of persuasion, advocacy and influence in the EU context.

A NOTE ON TERMINOLOGY

There are a number of key terms used throughout this volume. Pivotal to it is the notion of 'interest representation'. Conventionally, the idea has tended to be associated with that process, usually found in representative democracies, whereby those who are 'governed' (i.e. civil society) convey their wishes, demands, views and opinions to those who 'govern' them (i.e. elected representatives and those who form the 'administration' or the 'state'). In much of the academic literature on the subject, the term interest representation refers to collective activity undertaken by organizations such as 'pressure' or 'interest' groups rather than actions on the

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