Interest Group Access

  • Anne Binderkrantz SkorkjærEmail author
  • Helene Helboe Pedersen
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-13895-0_30-1

Definition

Access to key decision-makers is central for any actor trying to influence politics. Without access, it is difficult for organized groups to advance their viewpoints and influence political decisions. While the study of influence is notoriously difficult due to its conceptual and methodological challenges, the study of access is a more accessible research field. Studying interest group access is thus essentially important as well as empirically feasible for evaluating the political role of interest groups.

Although scholars have defined access in slightly different ways, a definition emphasizing the role of gatekeepers is commonly accepted. Access can thus be defined as instances where an interest group (or another political actor) has successfully entered a political arena such as parliament, the administration, or the news media passing a threshold controlled by a relevant gatekeeper, e.g., politicians or civil servants (Binderkrantz & Pedersen 2017: 310).

This chapter...

Keywords

Access Influence Interest groups Representation Democracy 
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References

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Further Reading

  1. Binderkrantz, A. S., & Pedersen, H. H. (2017). What is access? A discussion of the definition and measurement of interest group access. European Political Science, 16, 306–321.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Halpin, D., & Fraussen, B. (2017). Conceptualising the policy engagement of interest groups: Involvement, access and prominence. European Journal of Political Research, 56, 723–732.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anne Binderkrantz Skorkjær
    • 1
    Email author
  • Helene Helboe Pedersen
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Political ScienceAarhus UniversityAarhusDenmark