Analysing EU Influences: roles and rules for business interest and public interest lobbying

Trainer: Patrizia Heidegger

Various stakeholders seek to influence EU policy-making. There are an estimated 25.000 lobbyist in Brussels working for hundreds of European trade associations, for individual companies, law firms and consultancies. Hundreds of NGOs and not-for-profits have offices in Brussels to advocate for policy change. So do international and regional organisations, and governments. Who regulates lobbying? How do we ensure transparency and democracy? And what distinguishes business interest from public interest lobbying? Why does democracy need a strong civil society to make the voice of citizens heard in EU policy-making? We will explore these and more questions in our four evenings together, while taking a deeper look at the concrete example of the ‘green’ lobby, or how the environmental movement influences Brussels-level decision-making.