Who says what to whom? Alignments and arguments in EU policy-making

Rainer Eising*, Daniel Rasch, Patrycja Rozbicka, Danica Fink-Hafner, Mitja Hafner-Fink, Meta Novak

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the EU multilevel polity, domestic interest groups seek to shape EU legislation by accessing both national and EU institutions. Previous studies indicated that institutional and issue contexts, as well as organizational characteristics shape their strategies of interest representation. However, we know much less about how alignments and arguments impact on their participation in EU and national policy consultations. Addressing this gap, we investigate the lobbying strategies of almost 2,900 national interest organizations from five member states (Germany, the Netherlands, Slovenia, Sweden, and the United Kingdom) on 20 EU directive proposals bringing also a new empirical scope to the study of multilevel interest representation. The findings indicate that alignments and arguments shape the participation of domestic interest groups in consultations on EU policies. We infer from our study that some general predictions of interest group behaviour are overstretched and outline four variations of interest representation routines.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)957-980
JournalWest European Politics
Issue number5
Early online date26 May 2017
Publication statusPublished - 3 Sept 2017

Bibliographical note

This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in West European Politics on 26/05/2017, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/01402382.2017.1320175


  • multi-level governance
  • national interest groups
  • alignments
  • arguments
  • strategies


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