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The B.E. Journal of Economic Analysis & Policy

Editor-in-Chief: Jürges, Hendrik / Ludwig, Sandra

Ed. by Auriol , Emmanuelle / Brunner, Johann / Fleck, Robert / Mendola, Mariapia / Requate, Till / Schirle, Tammy / de Vries, Frans / Zulehner, Christine

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Volume 1, Issue 1 (Nov 2001)

Lobbying and Legislative Bargaining

Elhanan Helpman
  • 1Harvard University, Tel Aviv University and CIAR,
/ Torsten Persson
  • 2Institute for International Economic Studies and London School of Economics,
Published Online: 2001-11-03 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2202/1538-0637.1008


We examine the effects of the interaction between lobbying and legislative bargaining on policy formation. Two systems are considered: a US-style congressional system and a European-style parliamentary system. First, we show that the policies generated are not intermediate between policies that would result from pure lobbying or from pure legislative bargaining. Second, we show that in congressional systems the resulting policies are strongly skewed in favor of the agenda-setter. In parliamentary systems they are skewed in favor of the coalition, but within the coalition there are many possible outcomes (there are multiple equilibria) with the agenda-setter having no particular advantage. Third, we show that equilibrium contributions are very small, despite the fact that lobbying has a marked effect on policies.

About the article

Published Online: 2001-11-03

Citation Information: Advances in Economic Analysis & Policy, ISSN (Online) 1538-0637, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2202/1538-0637.1008. Export Citation

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