The European union interest system in Comparative Perspective: A Bridge Too Far?

David Lynn Lowery, Caelesta Poppelaars, Joost Berkhout

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


Can we meaningfully compare within a single theoretical framework the politics of interest representation in the European Union with its counterparts in the United States and other national political systems? We address this question by first considering several candidate explanations for the lack of broad-ranging comparative research on interest representation, focusing in the end on the problem of context. We then argue that much of the recent progress in the literature is a result more of segmentation of theoretical issues. The third section discusses how this successful strategy of segmentation has unfortunately raised new theoretical barriers to comparative analysis. This argument is explored by comparing work on organised interests in the EU with two other cases - the hyper-pluralistic interest politics of the United States and the neo-corporatist politics of the Netherlands.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1231-1252
Number of pages22
JournalWest European Politics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Oct 27 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Political Science and International Relations


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