Interest Groups and Lobbying

A.Y. 2019/2020
6
Max ECTS
40
Overall hours
SSD
SPS/04
Language
Italian
Learning objectives
A corse aimed at giving analytical, methodological and empirical skills for knowledge, understanding and analysis of representative systems of the business interest associations and strategies of policy pressure facing with the government, from a multilevel approach concerning with both Italian political system and European Union. After a primer introduction to the main theoretical models for the analysis of the business interests representation (neocorporatist and pluralistic), the course will be focused on the relationships among business interest associations, interest groups, lobbies and the government, in both Italian and European institutional policy making context. Paying particular attention on the disintermediation processes occuring in the political and business interest representation arenas, as a consequence of the digital revolution, the course will be also focused on the strategic solutions through which business interest associations are seeking to get back a role in policy making and in the relationship with the government. Several Italian and European case studies will be examined to outline the evolutionary landscape of the new way of representation, looking for some cut edge solutions.
Expected learning outcomes
- Knowledge and Understanding: at the end of the course, the student will have got a set of analytical and methodological skills, as well as empirical knowledge, on the representation systems of the business interest associations, the policy pressure and lobbying strategies, in a multilevel perspective, so that he should be able to analyze and understand the dynamics of representation and advocacy acting within both the Italian political system and the European Union.
- Applying Knowledge and Learning Skills: the course toolkit should allow the student to make analysis by himself of a representation system of business interest associations, identifying the strategies implemented by associations, interest groups and lobbies to influence the government. In addition, the student should become able to outline the essential elements of a strategic plan for the advocacy of a social category's interest within a given representation arena.
- Communication Skills: the presentation and discussion of case studies in the classroom, should allow the student learning to communicate the contents and the results of the analysis of a certain representation arena, with reference to its actors and strategies, to several interlocutors, specialists and non-specialists ones.
Course syllabus and organization

Single session

Responsible
Lesson period
Third trimester
Course syllabus
The program consists of two Teaching Units (a-b), each of twenty hours.

Teaching Program - Unit (a)
The first Unit provides an introduction to the fundamental tools for both the study of the interest representation systems and the analysis of interest groups in their policy pressure activities. A multilevel perspective will be adopted, taking into account the decision-making processes that take place both at the level of the Italian political system and at the level of the European Union political system. It will be mainly enquired the changes in the Italian interests system between the so-called First and Second republics, as well as the disintermediation that increasingly occurs in the interest representation system in Italy and UE, with significant effects on the strategies of business associations and lobbies.

Teaching Program - Unit (b)
The second Unit, taking into accout different case studies, deals with the empirical and practical analysis of the most important policy pressure strategies adopted by lobbies and business associations in policy making. The case studies will concern both with the national level, in relations with the main institutions of the Italian political system (Parliament and Government), and the sovranational level, within the EU, in relations with Parliament, the Commission and the European Council.
Prerequisites for admission
A corse aimed at giving analytical, methodological and empirical skills for knowledge, understanding and analysis of representative systems of the business interest associations and strategies of policy pressure facing with the government, from a multilevel approach concerning with both Italian political system and European Union. After a primer introduction to the main theoretical models for the analysis of the business interests representation (neocorporatist and pluralistic), the course will be focused on the relationships among business interest associations, interest groups, lobbies and the government, in both Italian and European institutional policy making context. Paying particular attention on the disintermediation processes occuring in the political and business interest representation arenas, as a consequence of the digital revolution, the course will be also focused on the strategic solutions through which business interest associations are seeking to get back a role in policy making and in the relationship with the government. Several Italian and European case studies will be examined to outline the evolutionary landscape of the new way of representation, looking for some cut edge solutions.
Teaching methods
Frontal lessons, presentations by students, case studies, group discussions, also with the participation of testimonials from the political and institutional world. Teaching integration materials are available on the teacher's personal blog.

Expected learning outcomes:
- Knowledge and Understanding: at the end of the course, the student will have got a set of analytical and methodological skills, as well as empirical knowledge, on the representation systems of the business interest associations, the policy pressure and lobbying strategies, in a multilevel perspective, so that he should be able to analyze and understand the dynamics of representation and advocacy acting within both the Italian political system and the European Union.
- Applying Knowledge and Learning Skills: the course toolkit should allow the student to make analysis by himself of a representation system of business interest associations, identifying the strategies implemented by associations, interest groups and lobbies to influence the government. In addition, the student should become able to outline the essential elements of a strategic plan for the advocacy of a social category's interest within a given representation arena.
- Communication Skills: the presentation and discussion of case studies in the classroom, should allow the student learning to communicate the contents and the results of the analysis of a certain representation arena, with reference to its actors and strategies, to several interlocutors, specialists and non-specialists ones.
Teaching Resources
Unit (a):
1- L. Mattina, I gruppi di interesse, il Mulino, Bologna 2010.
2- A. Pritoni, Lobby Italia. Il sistema degli interessi tra Prima e Seconda repubblica, Carocci, Roma.

Unit (b):
1- F. Bistoncini, Vent'anni da sporco lobbista, Guerini e Associati, Milano 2011.
2- Other documentation (case studies) made available by the teacher.
Assessment methods and Criteria
Oral examination: a colloquium aimed at verifying the learning of analytical, methodological and interpretive skills to know and to manage the decision-making process for how it is carried out within the political institutions, mainly those of the Italian political system and its long term evolution.
SPS/04 - POLITICAL SCIENCE - University credits: 6
Lessons: 40 hours
Professors: Bistoncini Fabio, Fasano Luciano Mario
Educational website(s)
Professor(s)
Reception:
Students can contact the teacher by e-mail or by chat on Microsoft Teams to arrange for day and reception hours on line. Please indicate as e-mail subject: "Student reception: MEETING REQUEST". Prefer Microsoft Teams chat if my undergraduates or students
Room 313 - SPS Department of Social and Political Science, 3rd Floor. During Covid-19 Emergency only for my undergraduates and by previous appointment.