The driving forces of stability. Exploring the nature of long-term bureaucracy-interest group interactions

C.H.J.M. Braun

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

This article explores the nature of long-term interactions between bureaucrats and interest groups by examining two behavioral logics associated with stability in public policy making. In addition to the implicit short-term strategic choices that usually feature in resource-exchange explanations of interest group access to policy makers, this article shows that bureaucracy-interest group interactions are likely to be dictated by routine behavior and anticipating future consequences as well. By drawing on survey and face-to-face interview data of Dutch senior civil servants and interest groups, the analyses reveal that a practice of regular consultations, the need for political support, and a perceived influential position together explain why bureaucrats maintain interactions with interest groups. The combination of these behavioral logics adds important explanatory leverage to existing resource-exchange explanations and shows that organizational processes as well as long-term strategic considerations should be taken into account to fully explain bureaucracy-interest group interactions. © 2012 SAGE Publications.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2
Pages (from-to)809-836
Number of pages27
JournalAdministration and Society
Volume45
Issue number7
Early online date7 May 2012
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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