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Greening the Common Agricultural Policy: the European Environmental Bureau lobbying action

In this work I analyze an important manifestation of the interest representation and the lobbying action: lobbying pursued by environmental organizations. In my study I explore the development of this phenomenon within the European Union framework.
The research starts from two main aspects: the influence and strength that Non-Governmental Organizations have in carrying out diffuse interest, and the exam of the particular action of environmental NGOs. Key questions of the study are the following: how might NGOs be rated in terms of their likely efficacy as lobbyists? Are they as strong as other lobbying groups? And, above all, how much environmental groups can compromise with the productive sector? In other words, is it appropriate to speak about compromise when safeguarding a diffuse interest like the environment?
The case study is about the introduction of green payments in the Common Agricultural Policy and it clearly shows environmental claims opposed to the requirements of economy and production. It considers, in particular, the lobbying action of the European Environmental Bureau, an important federation of environmental national groups.
The purpose of the study is to show in the first place that non-governmental actors are gaining greater importance in influencing decision makers, especially at the European level, even if their instruments are relatively blunt compared to those of more powerful lobbying groups such as big corporations. Secondly, to show that, among non-governmental actors, environmental groups are those with more relevance, given the attention that is paid to environmental issues, especially by the EU. Lastly, to demonstrate that the claim of environment defense cannot be unconditionally carried out without considering certain political conditions, otherwise the good purpose of the action will result ultimately futile.

Mostra/Nascondi contenuto.
9 Introduction When speaking about lobbyism the common image we have of a lobbyist is a man in suit and tie wandering the halls of power with his briefcase in seeking to jump on politicians and persuade them to legislate in favor of a particular interest. It is not wrong. Lobbyism is an activity mostly based on contact and building the right network of contacts would certainly be an advantage for interest groups. Hence, the work of a lobbyist is also that of meeting decision makers and submit them the arguments on why is convenient to act on a precise subjects. The important thing is that this whole process is carried out in all transparency and full legality. Some legislative frameworks provide specific regulations about the interest representation activity in order to fulfill transparency: in this regard some countries set up registers for lobbyists along with code of conducts 1 . The common image of a lobbyist is also that of unscrupulous men defending the business interests of big and powerful corporations. Guys like Nick Naylor 2 , to put it simply. However, lobbying does not concern only the representation of private, let alone malicious, interests, but also diffuse and social interests engage profoundly in lobbying and in the face- to-face interaction with decision makers. Therefore, the reality of social activism is no longer only that of people doing propaganda in the streets and delivering leaflets or that of environmentalists chaining themselves to trees. Instead, people representing social interests have acquired the instruments and the knowledge of the institutional interest representation; they have become professionals of advocacy, which is the activity aimed at influencing decision makers on behalf of collective interests. Thus, many Non-Governmental Organization s ’ e m p l oy e e s ha v e no c onc e rns i n defining themselves as lobbyists 3 . 1 F o r e x a m p l e , l o bbyi s t s ’ r e g i s t e r s a r e pr o vi de d i n t h e U ni t e d S t a t e s , i n C a n a da , a n d i n t h e E ur o pe a n Uni o n . S e e Petrillo P. L., Democrazie sotto pressione, Giuffré, Milano, 2011. 2 Nick Naylor is the protagonist of the famous movie of 2005 directed by Jason Reitman, Thank you for smoking, on the lobbying activity of the tobacco industry. 3 Faustine Defossez, the European Environmental Bureau policy officer on Agriculture defined herself a lobbyist even though she made a distinction from other lobbyists because «we do not have an economic interest, we fight for the general interest». Interview to Faustine Defossez, May 27, 2014.

Tesi di Laurea Magistrale

Facoltà: Scienze Politiche

Autore: Michele Carretti Contatta »

Composta da 186 pagine.


Questa tesi ha raggiunto 162 click dal 10/09/2015.


Consultata integralmente 2 volte.

Disponibile in PDF, la consultazione è esclusivamente in formato digitale.