Department of Political Science


NEW BOOK: Business Lobbying in the European Union

19 February 2021

A new book from our colleague Professor David Coen, alongside Dr Alexander Katsaitis and Dr Matia Vannoni, offers unique insights into how businesses have influenced policy-making in the European Union through lobbying.

book coen


Business Lobbying in the European Union draws on more than 30 years of data, as well as interviews, case studies and surveys to map out the strategies used by businesses to lobby effectively in Brussels.  It provides a perspective into how business representation in the EU has evolved; as well as valuable insights into how to organise lobbying strategies and influence policy-making.

The book is co-authored by Professor David Coen, from University College London, alongside Dr Matia Vannoni, from the Department of Political Economy at King’s College London, and Dr Alexander Katsaitis, from the London School of Economics and Political Science.

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At a time when Europe and business stand at crossroads, this study provides a perspective into how business representation in the EU has evolved and valuable insights into how to organize lobbying strategies and influence policy-making. 

Uniquely, the authors analyze business lobbying in Brussels by drawing on insights from political science, public management, and business studies. At the macro level, we explore over 30 years of increasing business lobbying and explore the emergence of a distinct European business-government relations style. At the meso level, we assess how the role of EU institution, policy types, and the policy cycle shape the density and diversity of business lobbying activity. Finally, at the micro level we seek to explore how firms organize their political affairs functions and mobilized strategic political responses. 

The study uses a variety of methods to analysis the business government relations drawing on unique business and policy-maker surveys; in-depth case studies and elite interviews; large statistical analysis of lobbying registers to assess density and diversity across policy areas and EU institutions; and managerial career path and organizational analysis to assess corporate political capabilities. 

In contributing to discussions on corporate political strategy and interest groups activity, this monograph should be of interest to public policy scholars, policy-makers, and businesses managers seeking to understand EU government affair and political representation.


Table of Contents

  1. Business-Government Relations in the European Union: Strategy and Complexity
  2. The Evolving Nature of EU Business Lobbying
  3. Institutions & Business Strategies: Differences & Commonalities
  4. The Nature of the Policy Field and Business-Government Relations
  5. Agenda-Setting and Business-Government Relations Across the EU's Policy-Making Cycle
  6. Revolving Doors or Sliding Doors in Brussels? Lobbying Strategies and Capabilities
  7. Making Sense of the Complexity of Business-Government Relations in the EU