Interest Groups

Topics: Government, Policy, Policy analysis Pages: 7 (2663 words) Published: March 1, 2006
Interest group representation in Canada identifies society's influence on the governing body and the policies decided upon in the legislative setting. The composition of interest groups has evolved over time and has lead to study of three distinct approaches to the power the representational groups have. The growth and change of interests in the Canadian state are dependent upon the structure between societal and government values. An interest group refers to a group of individuals bound together to excerpt pressure upon the government to achieve a common goal and acquire a common benefit. The Canadian government can not deal with the immense responsibility, which is delegated to it without interacting with every major sector of national institutional structure. The interaction gives interest groups a great deal of power because they provide the organization and the knowledge required by the government to oversee the numerous demands and then present the issues back to the government in an easily understandable process. Single issues or individual influence groups are the basic building blocks of modern pressure groups. Every interest is seen as expressing a combined purpose of individuals that have come together to achieve certain objectives. These groups have limited organizational skills and lack the knowledge of government to succeed in the few specific issues on their objective. Single issues interest groups usually have a fluid membership base, which use the media and extreme action to obtain their goals. The groups usually are fighting for a change in private or public policy they find unfair of unjust. These groups tend to disband when they reach their goals (or concede defeat). Although single interests groups are not completely ineffective, their tendency towards fanaticism makes them not well liked in the beacratic community and in turn do not stay around for to long. The main key to success for these groups lies within their effectiveness to appeal to public opinion. If the single interests group is around for enough time either by succeeding or refusing to give up they usually band together with other similar single interest groups to carry on the fight. Groups such as this are referred to as organizational interest groups and usually contain a higher degree organization than the single interests groups. Joining two or more groups with attention on structuarl interests can attracts a wider membership base that in turn provides a larger financial support to work with. With more money the group can take hire small staff of experts including lawyers, public policy experts, and public relations staff to help meet the changes in the government. The structure and basic goals of the organization do not change after the merger it simply becomes more complex. Organizational groups tend to avoid excessive behavior in the name of the cause and the use of media to gather public attention. Instead, the groups use formal briefs to get their point across to the general public. The organizational groups are competent in the political arena but are not as effective as the institutional groups. Institutional groups or superorganizational groups have an extensive membership basis that allows for a stable membership of like-minded people. Everyone within the institutional group does not partake in the same specific interest; the members are required to share the information with others in the group to act in a common fashion. The groups have considerable resources to carry out their concrete and immediate objectives. The resources include a highly trained staff that has extensive knowledge of the government that effects the appropriate government officials and can communicate easily with them. Unlike the single interests or organizational groups, institutional interest groups have the skills and knowledge needed to act as a go between, keeping the political process going among the disagreeing agencies. They have the ability to...

Bibliography: Alford, Robert R. and Roger Friedland, Powers of Theory. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1985. Banting, Keith, Michael Hawes, Richard Simeon, and Elaine Willis, eds. Policy Choices: Political Agendas in Canada and the United States. Kingston: Queen 's University, 1991. Brickerton, James, and Alain-G. Gagnon, eds. Canadian Politics. 3rd ed., Peterborough: Broadview Press, 1999. Knuttila, Murray. State Theories. 3rd ed., Halifax: Fernwood Publishing, 1992. Malvern, Paul. Persuaders. Toronto: Methuen, 1985. Nye, Joseph S. Jr., Kurt Biedemkopf, and Motoo Shiina. Global Cooperation. New York: The Trilateral Commission, 1991. Presthus, Robert, Elite Accommodation in Canadian Politics. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1973. Pross, Paul A., Group Politics and Public Policy. 2nd ed., Toronto: Oxford University Press, 1985. Seidle, Leslie F., ed. Equity and Community. Ottawa: Renouf Publishing, 1993. Thompson, Clive S., ed. First World Interest Groups. Westport: Greenwood Press, 1993. Thompson, Fred and WT Stanbury, The Political Economy of Interest Groups in the Legislative Process in Canada, Montreal: Institute for Research on Public Policy, Occasional Paper No. 9, viii. Young, Robert, ed. Stretching the Federalism. Kingston: Queen 's University, 1999. Word Count: 2470
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Interest Groups Essay
  • Pressure Groups Essay
  • Interest Groups Essay
  • Interest Groups Essay
  • Interest Rates and Bond Valuation Essay
  • Essay about To What Extent Do Pressure Groups Strengthen Pluralist Democracy‘to What Extent Do Pressure Groups Strengthen Pluralist...
  • Essay about Interest Groups
  • Term Structure of Interest Rates Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free