Lobbying

Three Years of Feminist Foreign Policy – What Difference Does It Make?

On the third of October 2014, Sweden made history. In a surprisingly sunny Stockholm, the newly appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs, Margot Wallström, proclaimed the first explicitly feminist foreign policy in the world. This subject was nothing new for the minister, who had recently served as the Special Representative of …

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Norway: Environmental Paragon or Charlatan?

The signing of the Paris Climate Accord last year is probably the boldest global statement ever made to tackle climate change. And, with much press coverage of how the United States could become the only country in the world not party to the accord, perhaps another nation could become the …

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If Mark Zuckerberg runs for president in 2020, what would it mean for Facebook?

Donald Trump’s current approval ratings are lower at this stage in the presidency than any other President in the last forty years. Emboldened by this perceived vulnerability, candidates are already beginning to position themselves in what is expected to be a crowded field to contest the Democratic Party nomination; a …

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Unscrambling Europe’s egg scandal

In recent years, the spotlight has been put on the hidden face of the food industry, especially when it comes to animal breeding. The conditions in which animals are kept has always been something controversial, but we are also discovering that practices, like the use of chemical products affect our …

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Can the world fight climate change without Trump?

In December 2015, 195 countries came together in Paris, France to adopt the Paris Agreement, which aims to mitigate the effects of climate change by limiting global warming to 2°C. The agreement, a first of its kind, was long in the making. After increasingly alarming atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide …

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Canada’s Cultural Genocide – The Challenging Road to Reconciliation

Canada’s colonialist history is commonly considered a relic of its distant past. It is the prevailing mindset among most Canadians that the damage done to indigenous communities in the process of European settlement has been adequately compensated for, and that the country is in the process of rebuilding relations with …

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The Politics of Meat

The Paris Climate Summit has brought about discussion of the various methods to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions. Despite the importance of this summit in helping reach a global consensus and promoting accountability in minimising global emissions, the issue of livestock and meat consumption has largely been under-addressed. Meat consumption …

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It’s a Koch brother’s world – Campaign finance law in the post-Citizens United era

Two of the richest people in the world, the Koch brothers have long helped shape the conservative arena of American politics. Going into the 2016 presidential race, they’ve recently announced that the political action network that they’re backing is going to spend 889 million dollars in the run-up to the …

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Lobbying in the Name of Democracy

View of the EU district, Brussels. Source: John & Mel Klots, FlickrThere are 15,000 active lobbyists in Brussels according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). These 15 000 lobbyists are divided between 3 000 different groups that are all stationed in Brussels. They work every day to try to influence the commissioners and lawmakers of the European Union, by trying to sway them into making decisions that would benefit their organizations. In anticipation of the first ever EU anticorruption report, which is expected to be published in November this year, one may start to question the influence of these groups and the EU’s approach to them. Can the lobbyists be considered representative of the people, thereby protecting public interests, where citizens are given a chance to communicate with the lawmakers directly? Or do they pose a potential threat to democracy? How fine is the line between lobbying and corruption?

By Erik Roshagen

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