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Books & Reports of Note
OECD - Lobbyists, Government and Public Trust, Volume 1 - The report presents the building blocks to develop a framework for lobbying that meets public expectations for transparency, accountability and integrity. > Read more. And in response to this document the UK APPC takes its stance: > Read more
EU and US approaches to lobbying - Really useful article from EurActiv discussing how lobbying differs in these two capitals. > Read more
Alone in Berlin by Hans Fallada: Published after the authors death in 1947 its astonishing it’s English translation came out only last year. This is a book everyone interested in Politics and History must read. Powerful, moving and gripping. In the same league as A Frank Diaries, 1984 and If not now, When? > Amazon
David Brain, President & CEO (EMEA) for Edelman on this year’s Trust study.
Edelman Trust Barometer 2010: Trust in Business Rises Globally. > Read more
Results of a survey of Public Affairs practitioners conducted by ComRes on behalf of PubAffairs. > Read more
Results of a survey of Public Affairs practitioners conducted by ComRes on behalf of PubAffairs. > Read more
How business interacts with government: McKinsey Global Survey results. > Read more
World Map of Lobbying Regulation – An essential overview for everyone. > Read more
'Edelman: Public Engagement in the Conversation Age' – 13 essays on how to keep ahead in a changing world. PR is changing. ‘Embrace the chaos.’ > Read more
Delib: ‘Empower or lose power’: New ‘democratic consumerism’ has begun to change business. Starbucks, Dell, Asda and even the NHS are jumping on the bandwagon, but Britain has to pay catch up. > Read more
Acclaimed sociologist Frank Furedi writes on the 'Tyranny of Expertise' – ‘he argues that 'experts are increasingly wheeled out to close down debate rather than provide enlightenment.' > Read more
Exclusive to PAW: Christian Gladwell, a UK-based Social Media expert, explains how corporate communicators engage in social media in this age of the 'citizen journalist > Read more
UK: Top 100 Public Affairs Professionals list – compiled by CIPR’s Government Affairs Group and Total Politics. > Read more
Photo Credit - College Hill
An Edelman/PublicAffairsAsia survey reveals that two-thirds of PA professionals with responsibility in China believe that social media has more influence over Chinese public policy than any other media. > Read more
The 2009 Country Brand Index, a report which rates 109 countries across 29 image attributes. Content includes The Olympic Effect on Brand China, The World’s Worst Country Brand and the relationship between Country Branding and Social Media. > Read more
Burson-Marstellar have launched a survey on crisis preparedness in business, revealing that only 53% of business decision makers polled currently have a crisis plan in place. > Read more
The Political Economy of Expertise examines the use of expert research and testimony by legislatures, particularly in the realm of interest groups and their role in improving policies. > Read more
EU: Burton-Martseller’s ‘A Guide to Effective Lobbying in Europe 2009’ reveals the attitudes of European political and policy elites across 15 EU countries. Click here for an article as well as a link to download the report. > Read more
Future Files: This book came out in 2008 but is still making waves in the world of communications. Richard Watson, explores many of the possibilities of the next fifty years, covering culture, science, politics, money and transport. > Read more
India: Michael Connellan writes for PAW on lobbying, communications and the economic recession in India: ‘nothing, simply nothing, is ever allowed to be boring in India.’ > Read more
The Veronis Suhler Stevenson (VSS) Communications Industry Forecast 2009-2013 provides strategic intelligence regarding all media industries, and is considered by many in the field to be the foremost source for understanding the future of the communications industry. For a summary > Click Here
Copenhagen: What’s the Worst That Could Happen has been called ‘required reading’ for climate change summit leaders by the Huffington Post. It turns the debate from ‘who should I believe?’ to ‘what shall I do?’ > Read more
Asia: A study by Fleishman-Hillard has reported that multinational corporations based in Asia may be risking their global business growth potential by having insufficient public affairs and communications departments. > Read more
US: Has Obama begun the first ever twitocracy? Mark Sabah, Head of Public Affairs and Communications at Delib, has written a briefing on President Obama’s attempt to establish transparent, participatory and collaborative government. > Read more
Photo Credit - Flickr
Lobbying the European Union has been lauded by Oxford University Press as ‘The essential volume in the EU.’ It specifically focuses on how special interests organise and select different coalitions as they interact with the process of policy making in Brussels. > Read more
US: The Foreign Lobbying Influence Tracker has collected data from the US Justice Department. It is an excellent source of information on donations to legislators from countries, clients and lobbying firms. > Read more
Video: Gordon Brown makes an appearance in Oxford at the award-winning TEDGlobal conference, where he gives a speech on the past progress and future potential for social media. He touches on the 2006 revolutionary “coup de text” in the Philippines as well as the present need for online organisation in the effort against global warming. To watch > Click here
A report from Penn State University delves into how Public Relations professionals outrank surgeons and accountants in ‘moral development.’ The report concludes that this is largely to do with the need to develop trust-based professional relationships, particularly with sceptical journalists. > Read more
2009 EDELMAN TRUST METER: The mid-year report shows surprising changes in the measurements for trust for government and business. In past reports, these two measurements have tended to move in opposite directions. Now they appear to be rising simultaneously. > Read more
‘Communication Power’ by Professor Manuel Castells. This book takes a critical look at the convergence of technology, communication and power within our new communication age. Within the realm of politics and business, Castells argues that battles are won only by those who know how to strategically wield the instruments of mass media. > Read more
The American Political Science Association publishes a study analyzing Washington lobbyists and finds patterns of polarized partisanship in lobbyists’ donations, challenging a common misperception that they often change sides.
A report on communications in India, from Michael Connellan, a young UK journalist, working for Ellwood & Atfield’s pro bono client, Jeevika Trust. Michael was recruited by E&A along with Angie Windle to work in Delhi for one year.
Video clips: YouTube: Comments on how political developments are affecting the public affairs industry around the globe from Fleishman-Hillard’s global public affairs practice meeting..
The Waxman Report: How Congress Really Works. The man who destroyed big tobacco’s reputation, banned smoking on aeroplanes, and secured federal aid for AIDS victims, provides insight into how Congress can be run to challenge entrenched special interests.
A series of three books on Interest Groups and Lobbying in the US, Europe and Latin America, Africa and the Middle East, edited by Conor McGrath. The series aims to allow comparative insight into the nature of contemporary lobbying around the globe.
The role of professional public affairs practitioners and the government relations processes in modern China – A collection of comments from the Public Affairs Asia China Government Affairs Forum
US: Case study on the health care industry’s campaign contributions and lobbying spending in the battle over health care reform. The report tracks the flow of money and discusses the potential impact on reform.
Case study on the lobbying efforts of the short-term consumer loans industry in the face of potential federal regulation. A rather academic but interesting attempt to demonstrate how a low federal profile industry seeks to influence Congress.
Report by the OECD Global Forum on Public Governance includes the most comprehensive survey to date of attitudes among European lobbyists towards self-regulation and regulation, and makes several recommendations on how professional lobbyists can reduce influence-peddling and strengthen public trust in government.
Herman Schepers of Waggener Edstrom Worldwide, examines the institutional challenges which lie ahead for the EU.
Brussels: Weber Shandwick’s Inside the Swedish Presidency of the EU: A guide outlining Sweden’s perspective of the challenges ahead.
UK: Towards A Public Affairs Council, Issues Paper - Working Party from APPC, CIPR and PRCA has considered a wide range of issues concerning the purpose of an umbrella group, which it has provisionally labeled the Public Affairs Council (PAC); how it might be formed; what the criteria for membership might be; and how it might operate.
Lobbying in America: A Reference Handbook by Ronald J.Hrebenar and Bryson B. Morgan. A comprehensive presentation of the way lobbying and interest-based political activism works in the United States.
Survey: European Parliament Digital Trends by Fleishmann-Hillard. New study reveals the extent of MEPs use of digital tools, concluding that public affairs professionals in Brussels need to build digital communications into their public affairs strategies if they are to remain effective advocates for their organizations.
Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) Podcast: Focuses on Hispanic Public Affairs, sharing insights on how to execute effective campaigns to influence Latino communities, mainstream constituents, government and institutions.
Essays by global Thought Leaders in public affairs and corporate communications. Published by PublicAffairsAsia. An excellent collection of nine top-level contributions from a wide range of Asian and global thought leaders. It also contains an introduction from Global Alliance chairman Colin Farrington.
Public Affairs Asia 2009 Survey: China to lead Asia PA growth….. China is set to lead the growth in public affairs and government relations activity in Asia, according to an exclusive survey of the region’s consultancy CEOs
The Future of Public Trust, Public Affairs In A Time of Crisis, Tom Spencer & Conor McGrath of RCPA publish a timely collection of essays including contributions from many of the leading thinkers and practioners across Europe
Lobbying, The art of political persuasion, by Lionel Zetter, It's a global industry which thrives wherever democratic governments are established.
'Business Regulation and Public Policy' by Professor John Hudson, It is the most authoritative guide to the costs government regulation imposes on business, ….. and the attempts being made, particularly by the EU, to reduce them.
Lobbying and Advocacy, Winning Strategies, Resources, Recommendations, Ethics and Ongoing Compliance for Lobbyists and Washington Advocates
> Read More
The 2009 Edelman Trust Barometer is the company’s ninth survey on trust and credibility.
> Read More
Do Political Connections Affect a Company's Value? This is the question analyzed in two current research papers Political Connections and the Allocation of Procurement Contracts.
> Read More
Regulations dealing with lobbying activity are relatively rare... Canada, USA, Germany and the EU are the only jurisdictions where lobbyists are subject to regulations. This report provides a systematic overview of the rules currently existing within these four systems.
> Read More
This Report sets out the current state of play in respect of the rules and practices regulating lobbyist activity in parliamentary systems in advanced democracies worldwide.
> Read More
Comparative Lobbying Practices: Washington, London, Brussels by Conor McGrath
> Read More
Articles & News
UK PAC - The UK Public Affairs Council brings together the APPC, CIPR and PRCA. This new organisation has been set up to promote independent regulation of the public affairs sector. > Read more
Brussels - Edelman, the world’s largest independent public relations firm and The Centre, Brussels’ first “think-do tank” announced today that they are merging their organisations in Europe’s capital city. > Read more. USA: The Hill: EdelmanTo Be or Not To Be... A Lobbyist!? "To register or not to register?’ That is increasingly becoming a question I hear in K Street lobbying circles.” > Read more
London: First Tories now Labour crack down on Lobbying, from a Statuary Register to banning Quango’s hiring Lobbyists. Public Affairs Central: Budget lobbying crackdown all it’s cracked up to be? > Read more. And the Telegraphs take on it: > Read more
Brussels - PA firms optimistic about growth prospects. > Read more
New trends in EU trade associations, a must read for those working in Brussels or leaders who’s organizations invest in Brussels based representative bodies. > Read more
Asia Public Affairs Awards, the PA community recognises great work and achievement, Gold Medal goes to, Weber Shandwick. > Amazon
EU: The number of think-tanks in Europe has more than quadrupled in recent years, are they at risk of turning into lobbyists as they face issues related to funding, autonomy and innovation. Will they be becoming more like US advocacy think tanks? > Read more
The Obama administration's call for a lobbying crackdown created confusion on K Street yesterday even as it spawned cheers among environmental and watchdog groups. > Read more
Obituary: Anne Wexler: Superlobbyist. 'The day after Reagan took office, Anne Wexler officially opened her own lobbying shop. Washington was never the same again. > Read more
‘Zhu Zhu Hamsters Dodge the Wheel of Death’: A crisis communications success story. > Read more
Photo Credit - Flickr
EU: Who will direct lobby transparency efforts after Commission President Barroso sets his agenda in Europe? > Read more
The Top 10 Reasons Media Relations Will Get Easier in 2010: This blogger asks ‘could there be a better time to be working in media relations?’ > Read more
100 Top Global Thinkers according to Foreign Policy - Gordon Brown managed to squeak in at #74. It may be one of his last victories against David Cameron, who failed to make the list altogether. > Read more
Photo Credit - Flickr
Photo Credit - Flickr
EU: 'Financial experts' with vested corporate interests make up a good part of the Commission's advisors for financial reforms. Lawmakers have backed a thinktank report condemning this practice. > Read more
26 November - It's Thanksgiving weekend! Lobbying is to thank for making Thanksgiving a national holiday. > Read more
US: Should churches be allowed to lobby as well as claim tax-exempt status? It’s one or the other, some say. > Read more
Photo Credit - Flickr
London - The libel capitol of the world, but for how much longer? Justice Secretary Jack Straw has vowed to change this, following a report summarising the impact of English libel law the freedom of expression. > Read more, and for a US perspective read the TIME Magazine article
Photo Credit - Flickr
EU: 21% of MEPs have Twitter accounts, according to Public Affairs 2.0 and Digimahti. Of course ‘using’ Twitter and ‘using it regularly’ are two very different matters. > Read more
China: New social media devices are changing the way businesses connect with their customers. But will Twitter and Facebook be able to overcome the ‘Great Firewall of China’? > Read more
Canada: Federal agencies banned from hiring lobbying companies. Is it a genuine attempt to save taxpayer money, or a feeble attempt by the PM to combat recent criticism? > Read more
EU: More than 80% of non-governmental experts in official financial advisory groups are industry lobbyists, according to a report by Alter-EU. > Read more
DC: Does Obama's 'reform' merely consist of encouraging lobbyists to admit they are lobbyists? Where’s the ‘change’ in Washington? > Read more
UK: Crisis Comms: Kids fingers amputed by Maclaren prams. The company failed to respond appropriately and were left to deal with damaging media coverage and Twitter post such as ‘Oh my God! Amputations from a stroller?!’ For the FT article (subscription required) > Read more or for coverage from TIME magazine click here.
Photo Credit - Flickr
A day in the life of a finance lobbyist: it’s all blackberry, all the time. > Read more
Video: Jere Sullivan, Vice Chair, Edelman Public Affairs
Edelman's 'Capitol Staffers Index Survey' study explores the use of digital media by legislative staff members in London, Brussels and DC.
For the outside link, click here
Foreign policy communication is in the spotlight following a bloody summer in Afghanistan. This article, published in the October/November 2009 edition of CIPR’s Profile magazine, lays out the ‘four pillars’ of strategic communication. > Read more
CIPR faces a substantial £700,000 debt for 2009. This is mainly due to moving costs and a downturn in trading income from the last quarter. > Read more
In the UK, the ‘tyranny of expertise’ has come to the public’s attention following the sacking of Professor David Nutt from the government’s Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs. This columnist calls it ‘very bad for democracy.’ > Read more
Sir Martin Sorrell of WPP predicts a LUV-shaped recovery for the different economic regions of Western Europe, North America and BRIC. > Read more
Photo Credit - CNBC
Lobbying expenditure hits new record for July, August and September, The Center for Responsive Politics reports. > Read more. Strangely enough, the same group reports a record number of lobbyists have quit the federal register this year. > Read more.
Japan: The new PM will usher in a new public affairs landscape as he institutes a new government. Policy will no longer be driven by civil servants, but by elected members of parliament. > Read more
DC: Big Coal’s lobbying activities are being further investigated by a House committee, after speculation arose regarding the accuracy of the group’s reports on spending. > Read more
US/Sudan: An American lobbyist worked secretly for the Sudanese government and is now being served with an eight-count indictment. Sudan has been under a US embargo since 1993, making it illegal for Americans to work for the Sudanese government. . > Read more
UK: A lobby register should be voluntary, not statutory according to the Cabinet Office. The Commons public administration and select committee have responded by calling for a bill to force lobbyists to reveal their clients. > Read more
US: Northwest Airlines faced a communications nightmare after two of their pilots missed their destination by 150 miles before having to turn back. Read one communication blogger’s opinion on the airline’s response – or lack thereof. > Read more
Crisis Communications: A reflection and analysis of the evolution of crisis management from 1999 to 2009. > Read more
EU: Two-thirds of Brussels-based lobby groups are not in the register.Despite this shortcoming, the commission has celebrated the progress of the register as the 2000th entry is added. > Read more
US: Obama’s waging a war on Fox news—but the hero-villain roles could be a strategy to benefit both sides. > Read more
US: Hollywood’s top lobbyist is set to leave the life of glitz and glamour. His next step? To pursue a career in ‘global hunger and agricultural’ issues. > Read more
US: Goldman Sachs will need an image makeover as they prepare to hand out record bonuses. The company suffered fierce criticism during the financial crisis, most famously being called a ‘vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity’ by Rolling Stone magazine.
For Reuters, > Click here
For Rolling Stone > Click here
The $2m tweet: Crisis communications in a pizza box. Will issues of libel in social media spell the end of PR as we know it? > Read more
US: A nuclear energy lobby group has hired a hockey team to promote low-emissions nuclear power through games and radio ads. > Read more
India v. China: India has ‘smoother’ lobbying skills than China, specifically when it comes to influencing American policy makers and business people. > Read more
DC: Will Obama reconsider a ban on registered lobbyists? The Retail lobby has begun arguing against the ban, arguing it punishes those who sign up according to the Lobbying Disclosure Act. > Read more
US: Crisis communications were at work at the US Open Tennis Championships, after Serena Williams threatened the lines person with bodily harm. > Read more
DC: Lobbying can at times be a sordid affair, but it is not a crime, as some would like to portray it. Kevin Ring, once a successful lobbyist, was described as 'crooked' but was he simply good at his job? > Read more
US: The history of lobbying in the US - from the first lobbyist in 1792 up to today, the Christian Science Monitor reports. > Read more
DC: Lobbyists are expected to terminate their registrations after Obama announced that federal agencies should keep from appointing them to advisory boards. > Read more
UK: Lobbyists with Labour backgrounds are being laid off and replaced with lobbyists with Conservative credentials-and some are calling it a challenge to David Cameron. Will he be able to keep his Tory candidates from taking up part-time lobbying? > Read more
UK: More than two dozen lobbyists and PR consultants stand a good chance of becoming Tory MPs in the next general election. > Read more
EU: Forget a voluntary lobby register, a mandatory register is needed - and urgently. The EU system is 'pitiful' when compared to the US system. > Read more
DC: The White House will push to keep lobbyists out of federal advisory boards, though it did not promise a formalized ban. > Read more
Germany: Politicians have expressed concern that drug prices are rising. They blame the pharmaceutical lobby for pushing prices well above prices in neighbouring countries. > Read more
Sweden: Social media are expected to transform campaigning for the 2010 general election. Nearly 80% of local politicians are confident that it will play a vital part as they battle for votes. > Read more
Michael A. Levi of Foreign Affairs shares his view on the upcoming Copenhagen conference. Levi claims the ‘odds of signing a comprehensive treaty in December are vanishing.’ Instead, a complete shift in strategy is needed. > Read more
UK: Peter Bingle: Are the Tory Party for the public affairs industry? It's a very different Tory Party than before, with Cameron and Osborne old hands at dealing with public affairs agencies and in-house teams. > Read more
France: An analysis of Air France's crisis communications following the crash of flight AF 447 Rio-Paris highlights how communications have evolved over time. > Read more
China: Several enterprises are taking steps to integrate corporate social responsibility into their business practices. Read this interview by Gefei Yin, the Vice President of the Development for Chinese CSR. > Read more
India seems to be adopting an American approach to lobbying. The country has always been infamous for flagrant corruption, but is now making a switch from threats bribes to persuasion and PowerPoint presentations. > Read more
DC: New rules and regulations for ‘special interests’ are having unexpected consequences. Critics claim that the changes have hindered the Obama administration from filling important government jobs. > Read more
Also in DC, one year following the $700b rescue package to bailout the financial sector the Treasury Department has published new rules on lobbying the government for bailout money. > Read more
UK: The ‘Fat Duck’ was once rated the #1 restaurant in the world. This year, it became a case study for how not to manage a crisis. > Read more
UK: Peter Bingle: How prepared is the public affairs industry for a Conservative government? New challenges lie ahead for many left-leaning consultants and PA professionals. > Read more
Brussels: It is no surprise that companies use the media to influence legislation. But considering these companies rarely declare media-led campaigning, does that make media work the biggest lobbying loophole at work in Brussels? > Read more
DC: A former lobbyist is standing trial as part of a ‘pay-to-play’ conspiracy involving illegal gratuities meant to influence government action. K Street watches on. > Read more
‘Is India going for an image makeover?’ – After being blamed for a breakdown of global trade negotiations in 2008, India is making an attempt to clear its name. > Read more
UK: The ‘cash for bangers’ scheme has been hailed as a success, but lobby groups are calling for an extension the programme, which is set to finish once the £300m has been exhausted. > Read more
EU: Lobby transparency has fallen in the list of priorities for this coming autumn, as Stockholm becomes absorbed with the more immediate concerns of the Lisbon Treaty and the appointment of the new EU president. > Read more
China: In a campaign to challenge Chinese policies, the EU has issued a 600-page complaint arguing that protectionism will seriously damage trade between the two major economies. > Read more
Frank Furedi writes on ‘Specialist Pleading’ – ‘The problem is not the status of the expert, but its politicisation…. Expert advice is used to legitimise government policies that have a significant effect on people’s lives… There is a tendency for politicians to retreat behind the complexity of expertise… rather than… striving to achieve the resolution of problems. > Read more
US: Spending on lobbying has doubled in the last eight years, according to figures released on the OpenSecrets.org website. > Read more
Crisis Communications: Two “PR Nightmares” have started people asking: could crises actually be a brilliant means of creating publicity? > Read more
Canada: Lobby groups argue that the new Lobbying Act is too harsh, like “taking a sledgehammer to kill a fly.” The act proposes a 5-year restrictive ban on lobbying. > Read more
Australia: Two senior lobbyists have called for an expansion for lobby registers to also include in-house government relations staff, rather than limit it to just ‘pure lobbyists.’ > Read more
UK: Fred Goodwin, the shamed RBS boss, has returned to the UK for ‘reputation rehab.’ He has hired the former head of PA for British Airways in order to try and salvage what he can of his public image. > Read more
September is ‘Preparedness Month’: Perhaps it’s time to take a new look at your crisis communications plan. With the growth of communications tools on the internet, news spreads quicker—and bad news doubly so. > Read more
Blocking Facebook: are new social media opening up companies too much to public criticism? Many Communications professionals fear a loss of control, and are having certain sites such as Facebook and Twitter blocked. > Read more
EU: Online “buzz” does in fact translate into higher voter turnout. European politicians are far behind their US counterparts in using the internet to connect with constituents, a report shows. > Read more
Australia: A new ‘lobbying code of conduct’ will be drafted in Queensland. This comes following a battle to keep lobbyists from holding government positions. > Read more
Australia: An account of life as a lobbyist is given by Con Sciacca, former Labor MP. > Read more
UK: Every year, the government spends £38m lobbying itself. A new report reveals the details of spending on different advocacy and political consultants. > Read more Is spending taxpayer money on lobbying immoral? One Guardian columnist thinks so: > Read more
Is Twitter an essential tool for large companies? "We’re getting to a point if you’re not responding [on Twitter], you’re not being seen as an authentic type of brand..." > Read more Is Twitter an essential tool for politicians? David Cameron makes a real twit (or a tw*t) of himself answering that one. > Read more Many business experts claim Twitter is just another internet fad, and will "end up roadkill." > Read more
AUSTRALIA: Ministers and MPs are forbidden from attending fundraising functions within the business community following a week of controversy regarding business links to Queensland’s government. > Read more
AFRICA: What to do (Gap), and what not to do (Levi Strauss) if one of your company’s factories causes serious environmental damage in Africa: PR Week explores a classic crisis management case study. > Read more Also, check out video coverage of the story on YouTube. > Read more
CANADA: PAW notes further problems and delays in lobby registration. The spotlight on registries began in the US, then the EU and now Canada: Premier Ed Stelmach has been criticised for the two year delay in setting up an effective registry for lobbyists in the province.> Read more
US: In a direct departure from his previous commitment to a “transparent” administration, the White House have denied a request for access to a list of visiting healthcare lobbyists. The Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington plan to sue for access to the records. The group has expressed concerns over the amount of financial support that many large healthcare-related businesses gave Obama during the 2008 presidential campaign> Read more
UK: Should companies donate to politics as private individuals? Shareholder group Pirc has criticised Caledonia Investments for seeking to donate £750,000 to the Tory election campaign. > Read more
AUSTRALIA: A possible ban on ‘success fees’ for lobbyists securing Queensland government contracts > Read more Meanwhile, in South Australia, plans for a registry of lobbyists looks set to collapse following widespread rejection from both sides of the political spectrum. > Read more
UK: Government fails to define ‘lobbying’ after 7 years of campaigning by Government watchdog, the Advisory Committee on Business Appointments…”There is no simple definition of the term lobbying ... This needs to be rectified"…
Brussels: Michiel Van Hulten Brussels MD for Burson-Marsteller and Former MEP, on how PA professionals will approach work with the new parliament and how influential the new Conservative group may be.
Hiring the homeless – another bizarre way to buy influence on Capital Hill as lobbyists pay line-standers to ensure they get seats at Senate hearings.
The Reputation Index: Marks & Spencer, Google and Cancer Research top the table as a panel of Westminster decision-makers rate the influence of 50 brands for PRWeek and PoliticsHome
UK: Cabinet Minster Angela Smith, Tom Watson’s replacement on the lobbying brief remains unconvinced on the case for a mandatory register of lobbyists
Brussels: National capitals remain key lobbying arenas despite the increasing importance of Brussels, says Julia Harrison, Managing Partner of Blueprint Partners
The Huffington Post goes lobbyist-spotting as it crashes a typical politician’s fundraiser in Washington. Needless to say the reception was frosty.
Australia: Government figures reveal the register of lobbyists represents a small part of the lobbying industry in Canberra.
Russia: ‘Mainstream political journalism in Russia is more dead than alive.’ A look at the role of the Kremlin and Russian oligarchs.
A lesson in openness from Sweden as 7000 politicians, decision-makers, journalists, trade unionists, lobbyists and a couple of ambassadors attend Almedalen Week, the annual conference hosting more than 1000 free political events.
Dublin: The case for a register of professional lobbyists in Ireland
US: The irony of Obama’s agenda on lobbying: By handing his progressive agenda to Congress, Obama is inadvertently allowing special interests to sabotage the reforms they fear most.
China’s market place of ideas: think tanks still require the government’s approval to survive as China’s new ‘super think tank’, the China Centre for International Economic Exchanges (CCIEE), seeks an international role in the quest to remedy the global financial crisis.
Arianna Huffington, founder of the Huffington Post, argues that the internet has the potential to be a ‘countervailing force’ against entrenched interests, drawing attention to the way it motivated citizens to triumph over the banking lobby on credit card reform.
Australia: One year on – the Australian Lobbyist Register is criticised for failing to represent the true extent of lobbyists in Canberra.
UK/Brussels: Elaine Cruikshanks, CEO of Hill and Knowlton's Brussels office warns Tory MEP’s will lose EU influence by leaving the European People’s Party (EPP).
US: The media’s love affairs with Obama and its implications for democracy. Is his celebrity status over shadowing the policy issues?
Public Affairs Council launches a new discussion forum, ‘Council Conversation’ to facilitate exchange between public affairs practitioners.
US: Representation by the Lobbyists, For the Lobbyists - the People be Damned - A strongly worded interpretation of the relationship between the lobbying industry and American democracy.
Are churchgoers lobbyists?: In another battle over this controversial question, US District Court of Connecticut must chose between the letter of the law or the spirit of it. > Read more…Attorney General Richard Blumenthal, representing the Church, argues forcing the Church to register as a lobbyist would violate the First Amendment protecting freedom of speech. > Read more
UK: A call for further transparency in the Lords, as Lady Cumberlege and several other peers are suspected of being heavily involved in the commercial lobbying industry.
An overview of the complex relationship between China and the media.
UK: Labor Party, announces fines of up to £5000 for MPs breaking rules on paid lobbying or failing to comply with registration rules. The new Parliamentary Standards Bill also threatens up to a year imprisonment and/or fines for MPs who knowingly make false expenses claims.
Brussels: 73 of newly elected MEPs pledge to ‘provide leadership in lobbying transparency and ethics’.
Brussels: Mixed messages from the EU on transparency: EU Commission’s DG Environment gives Friends of Europe a prominent role in ‘Green Week’, in spite of Kallas’ attempts to pressure the think tank into registering.
Asia: Monsanto’s Director of Corporate Affairs in South East Asia, Shanti Shamdasani, sets a challenge for PA professionals, arguing corporations are missing out by failing to connect with Asia’s increasingly active multilateral institutions.
Japan: Q&A on the Japanese Business Federation (Nippon Keidanren), Japan’s most powerful business lobby.
Michael Cherenson, Chair and CEO of the Public Relations Society of America urges the business community to embrace social networking technology in order to restore trust in institutions.
USA Today analysis reveals lobbyists’ subtle methods of swaying lawmakers despite a ban on gifts and limits on campaign contributions. Lobbyists are spending money to honor members of Congress and donating to charities associated with them.
Brussels: Corporate Europe Observatory accuses British American Tobacco of exploiting loopholes in the EU’s voluntary register of lobbyists. A research group campaigning for transparency in Brussels, charges BAT with disclosing only part of its lobbying budget in order to downplay its attempts to influence policy.
US: Obama bending his own rules? Two consumer groups, The Center of Digital Democracy and Consumer Watchdog, have criticised Obama for appointing Google’s top global public policy official, Andrew McLaughlin, as his deputy technology officer. They argue the appointment violates Obama’s ethics rules aimed at shutting the revolving door.
Brussels: EU Commission is willing to introduce a mandatory system if necessary, Kallas’s spokesperson confirms. The voluntary system is due for review in July. > Read more... Lobby registry ‘as useful as a phonebook without numbers’ - The Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ethics Regulation (Alter-EU) continues its fight for increased lobbying transparency in Brussels and calls for a compulsory register to be set up. > Read more
The faulty logic of a US-EU comparison - The US's failure to control the influence of big business on policy is not an argument against the EU tightening its own lobbying rules.
Opinion : NZ Herald : A New Zealand perspective on transparency – After Parliament Speaker, Lockwood Smith, defends the privacy of professional lobbyists, NZ Herald Editorial argues in favour of a register of lobbyists although claims Obama’s lobbying lock-out go too far.
UK: Cabinet decision on mandatory register for lobbyists faces possible further delays as Tom Watson, Minister for Digital Engagement and Civil Service Issues, stands down over the expenses scandal. Senior lobbying industry figures discuss the potential impact.
Brussels: As the European Parliamentary elections approach, the role of industry lobbyists in EU decision-making becomes an issue in the Netherlands, Austria and elsewhere.
An attempt to create a level playing field in Washington. The White House extends the stimulus lobbying ban. Now both registered and non-registered lobbyists are prohibited from making oral communications with the federal agencies tasked with awarding economic recovery funds > Read more… PAC President, Douglas Pinkham, suggests alternative to White House lobbying rules > Read more... Meanwhile, lobbyists have been training clients to attend meetings on their own as they exploit a stimulus lobbying loophole. > Read more
Greenpeace International recruits new Director of Communications from big oil. (Who said advocacy sills weren’t transferable?)
US: Washington Post: Cutting off competence - The unintended consequences of Obama’s lobbying lockout > Read more New York Times: Nonprofit Groups Seeking Exceptions to Lobby Rule - …The fact that Mr. Malinowski lobbied on behalf of genocide victims rather than military contractors, investment firms or pharmaceutical companies made no difference. Mr. Obama’s anti-lobbyist rules do not distinguish between those who advocate for moneyed interests and those who advocate for public interests
US: USA Today: analysis shows more than one in four members of Bush’s Cabinet have landed jobs with consulting or lobbying firms. Despite Obama’s attempts to shut the revolving door, no restrictions yet exist prohibiting former executive branch officials from serving as consultants on their former departments and agencies.
Asia: A Good Crisis For Japan?President and Chief Executive Officer of BKSH & Associates, Scott Pastrick, argues that the crisis gripping Japan presents an opportunity to overhaul the country's political economy and its public affairs.
Brussels - Think-tanks should join EU lobby register, Kallas insists The European Commission sees think-tanks as interest representatives and thus expects them to sign up to its voluntary lobbyists register
London, The Times: Lobbyists must register donors and their support. Everyone involved in lobbying politicians, from multi-client consultancies and advocacy groups to in-house public affairs workers and think-tanks, has the power to affect every facet of our lives on critical issues such as health, finance, nutrition and education.
NewsWeek: All Lobbyists are Not Created Equal - The rules miss the distinction between lobbying that's good for democracy and lobbying that perverts it.
London: No10 top aide leaves in SmearGate: Is Damian McBride beyond the pale for public relations? A PM's former adviser ought to be highly employable. Not always…
London: ‘Smeargate’ exposes Labour’s digital defects - This is a new war, fought against bloggers who operate independently of political parties or media owners. They are not reliant on being spoon-fed stories
London: Scent of victory puts PR firms on the hunt for Tory big beasts - Agencies want recruits with access to a possible Conservative regime
Asia: Lobby groups welcome G20 Asian and global lobby groups have welcomed the outcome of the G20 meeting despite warning that it has "fallen short" on measures needed to respond to the global economic situation.
Washington: Unlikely alliance of activists challenge Obama. President Obama's war with K Street is escalating….
Washington: DC Lobbyists fight back on behalf of stimulus package They ask “What disqualifies lobbyists from exercising their First Amendment rights?"
Brussels: Kallas expects Swedish progress on EU lobby rules
Moscow Times: The landscape of government relations in Russia is changing drastically. …… it is quite interesting to observe the sharp change in lobbying practices…
Washington: Lobbyist ban limits Obama's options. As he strives to build an administration beyond his top Cabinet officers, Obama is finding that he has limited his pool of potential appointees because of a ban on individuals from agencies that they have lobbied within the past two years.
Brussels: The European Commission's register of lobbyists has been up and running for six months, but the participation by lobbying firms has so far been poor – and law firms seem to have engineered an almost total boycott of the register.
Obama flip-flop on lobbyist ban is good news for Boston-based military contractor. The new president, promising change, is instead doing business as usual when it comes to the military-industrial complex.
Brussels, Tom Spencer writes... Business needs public affairs more than ever in a down turn
LABOUR peers are prepared to accept fees of up to £120,000 a year to amend laws in the House of Lords on behalf of business clients, a Sunday Times investigation has found.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Under orders to move quickly on the faltering economy, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is expected to unveil new rules Tuesday to limit special-interest influence involving the $700 billion financial rescue program.
China: The year that was 2008 was certainly an Olympic year for China. There has been a number of changes in the past year that have shifted the economic and political landscapes for those multinational companies (MNC) and NGOs operating there
India: Election has the Obama effect as web-lobbying takes off. With the largest democracy of the world going to polls this month, campaigning has ventured into the new dimension of web-lobbying
THE INFLUENCE GAME: Lobbyists work inauguration WASHINGTON (AP) — The sushi was plentiful, the jazz ensemble loud and the guest list included just what the party-givers wanted: members of Congress
Schwarzenegger’s advice to health lobbyists: comprimise with Obama. In Calfornia, Gov. Arnold Schwarznegger held a forum for health lobbyists and used his experience to suggest compromise is the key….
Myth No. 1 is that lobbying is anti-democratic, because it frustrates "the will of the people." Just the opposite is true: Lobbying is an expression of democracy.. Writes Robert J. Samuelson in the Washington Post
With a new administration coming into the White House and a UK election within 18 months, there is demand from firms to get close to the new power-brokers.
Lobbying rules 'must be stricter' Lax rules are allowing former ministers to exploit contacts built up in public office for private gain, a committee of MPs has warned.
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Lax rules are allowing former ministers to exploit their insider knowledge for profit "with impunity", a committee of MPs warned as it called for tougher regulation of lobbying.
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The Obama administration has announced new and much-needed limits on lobbying for those who take jobs in the administration
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WASHINGTON: Edelman has added two prominent political strategists to its public affairs practice.
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A Foot in the Revolving Door, Mr. Obama takes his shot at limiting influence-peddling.
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How Washington Lobbyists Fought to Flack for a Stalinist Dictatorship
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Civil society demands more lobbying transparency. European civil society, transparency and consumer groups yesterday (30 October) unveiled guidelines for a new EU lobbyists' register to replace the "weak and unclear" model introduced by the European Commission in June.
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Firms still spending heavily to sway votes. Although American corporations have been under intense financial strain …
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Lobbies & Campaigns
USA: Lobbying Blitz Takes On Obama’s Wall St. Overhaul. With the Obama administration looking to score another major legislative victory, an array of pro-business groups are mounting a well-financed campaign to scale back or block plans to overhaul regulation of the financial industry. > Read more
UK Scandal or Saga? Hoon, Byers and Hewitt. If you have missed it, PAW links you to a selection of comments and news about the recent “sting” that has embarrassed some senior politicians as well as led to some important debate about lobbying, representation and democracy. Observer: 'Cash for promises' scandal has stirred up murky waters. A fine line distinguishes legitimate efforts to influence policy from those that are corrupt > Read more. London - PRWeek: Leading lobbyists took to the airwaves to defend the reputation of the public affairs industry after the expose by reporters posing as a fake lobbying firm for Monday's Dispatches programme. > Read more
USA - NPR: Lobbying Giants Cash In On Health Overhaul $1.2 billion was spent by 1,750 businesses and organizations in 2009 alone on lobbying teams to work on the health care overhaul > Read more
The Wall Street Journal: Toyota Scrambles to Build D.C. Crisis Team > Read more
The Sydney Morning Herald: Australia: Lobbyists say they are misunderstood and the idea that a consultant can fix problems for clients simply by contacting a "mate" in government is unrealistic. > Read more
London: Cameron & Tories promise clampdown on Lobbying. > Read more
Sir Martin Sorrel – ‘Few signs of the Obama administration in Davos.’ > Read more
China learns to ‘work’ Capitol Hill: Beijing’s multimillion-dollar image-and-influence campaign pays off. > The Guardian
UK: Prince Charles accused of lobbying ministers. His advisers pressed Cabinet ministers on subjects ranging from the design of hospital buildings to ways of increasing housing supply. MPs said that he needed to ensure that he did not cross the line separating his ceremonial role from democratic politics. > The Guardian or > The Times
Copenhagen: The business lobby and green lobby are up in arms as Business Europe leads the way in urging companies work against proposed increases in carbon-reduction requirements. > Read more.
'Making Money out of Climate Change' explains lobbying in Copenhagen. This resource lists many of the key players. > Read more.
’We’ve learned our lesson' - The Internnational Institute of Finance claims that banks have 'worked hard to move away from a culture of risk-taking.' > Read more
Photo Credit - Flickr
UK: The pre-budget report rewards lobbying by groups representing bingo, patenting and energy. The biggest losers of the report were most likely banks, whose lobbying against what they coined a 'supertax' fell on deaf ears. > Read more.
‘Beware global warming – and the lobbyists’ - Mr Joss ‘Green Movement Poster Boy’ Garman writes for the Times on how lobbying has impacted climate change policy in the DC, London and now Brussels. > Read more.
Lord Nigel Lawson’s book ‘An Appeal to Reason’ claims that alarmist politicians are creating a crisis out of nothing. Though published in 2008, it’s been newly reviewed in the Telegraph in time for Copenhagen. > Read more.
BBC Radio 4: Where does science end and morality begin? Michael Buerk chairs a debate on climate change. > Read more.
‘Obama’s Climate Push Plays Catch-Up With Corporate Lobbyists’ - Bloomberg reports on corporate presence at the Copenhagen summit. The CEOs of GE, Coca-Cola, HSBC, Nestle and Nike will be meeting with Obama on the 9th of December. > Read more.
US: 'Lobbying then and now'- an interesting article arguing that the country's first lobbyists were often dedicated to 'uncompromising professional integrity,' but modern-day lobbying trends tend to lead to a cacophony of 'advice' and thus bad policymaking. > Read more.
UK: Supermarket chains are lobbying against the creation of an independent ombudsman, whose aim would be to intercede in the dispute between the chains and suppliers. > Read more.
Russia: From top car lobby to political movement? The Federation of Russian Car Owners recently won a substantial policy battle, and now have set their sites towards elected politics. > Read more
Will healthcare advocates soften their messages during the Christmas season? Harsh attacks are not well-received during the holidays. > Read more. Meanwhile, Obama has received a helpful vote which will open formal debate over the healthcare bill. > Read more.
US: Economist for sale - The US Chamber of Commerce is offering $50k to any 'respected economist' willing to publish a report which would smear health care reform. > Read more
UK: The Square Mile now has its own lobby. TheCityUK, backed by Sir Win Bischoff (Lloyds) and Bob Wigley (Merrill Lynch), has been set up to represent the views of the financial services industry. > Read more
France: Cheers! The wine industry is hitting back against the ‘prohibitionist agenda ravaging France.’ The group will fund studies to show the health benefits of drinking wine. > Read more
US: The Coal industry has spent $447m in lobbying, PR and grassroots outreach to tout the industry's new 'clean coal' efforts. However, only 2% of profits are being spent on research for clean coal. > Read more
DC: Bank lobby, healthcare lobby... God lobby? Religious organisations are being utilised by business lobbies because of their large grassroot networks. > Read more
Lobbying efforts on behalf of hedge funds seem to have backfired. The newest legislation includes pay curbs that were not originally included in the earlier versions of the legislation > Read more
US: A Sweet Deal - Why would Dunkin' Donuts lobby the Federal Reserve? > Read more
Photo Credit - Flickr
‘China has scores of people studying, analysing and lobbying the EU. India seems to simply ignore it.’ Is there an issue of chronic underprioritisation between India and Brussels? > Read more
The two biggest financial lobby groups have merged to create the Association for Financial Markets in Europe, after major financial regulations have driven banks to combine their efforts. > Read more
EU: New lobbying rules will include national embassies and add a new category for think-tanks. These changes come after a first-year review of the lobby register brought to light some ‘fundamental flaws.’ > Read more
UK: Peers will likely be banned from taking money for lobbying in parliament, following new proposals. The proposals also recommend an investigation to be made by an independent commissioner regarding expenses claims. > Read more
India and Pakistan: Lobbying in DC has fluctuated in the last quarter for these two neighbouring countries. India has decreased spending whilst Pakistan has increased. > Read more
DC: ‘Lobbyist Full-Employment Act’ – also known as healthcare reform. Overhauling the entire healthcare system will generate an enormous amount of business for healthcare lobbyists. One lobbyist has stated ‘If we were to pass this bad boy, we’re going to be working on this thing for 10 years solid.’ > Read more
UK: Hedge funds and private equity companies lobby the House of Lords to block an EU directive they view could be ‘deeply damaging.’ The measures have been proposed in response to criticism regarding regulations for investment companies.> Read more
UK: In front of 1100 guests, PR Week editor Danny Rogers fumbled and evaded challenges from an unwelcome group of airport activists. This year’s PR Week awards show was interrupted by ‘Plane Stupid’ activists, who managed to storm the Virgin Atlantic table during event before five police cars responded. > Read more
Japan: Trade unions have stepped up lobbying as the new Japanese government begins to make changes in issues such as national wage. They expect ‘unprecedented influence’ in government policy. > Read more
US: Lobbyists go straight to the Office of Management and Budget to influence decisions regarding greenhouse gases. The OMB does, after all, write the final drafts on federal rules regarding regulations.> Read more
Obama pushes back against lobbyists trying to water down regulations reform of the financial sector. A senior advisor to the president stated ‘We are disappointed… considering the obvious need for change on that front.’ > Read more
US: Boeing steps up lobbying after massive losses as the Obama administration cuts back on defence spending. > Read more
UK: Tories shun APCO lobbyists on the eve of the start of Conservative conference, stating ‘conflict of interest.’ > Read more
An Australian climate change group has hired Burson-Marsteller to head up a PR drive in the US and China ahead of the Copenhagen climate change conference. > Read more
Czech Republic: The lobby register bill has been sent back for rewriting by the Czech Chamber of Deputies. One MP said 'it included apparent nonsense. > Read more
Pakistan has hired Cassidy and Associates, one of DC's biggest lobbying firms, to lobby its case in the Kerry-Lugar aid bill, which is set to triple US assistance to Pakistan. The firm is reportedly working for $700k a year plus expenses. > Read more
US: Genesis Healthcare has been lobbying its aged residents regarding a reform bill. Some say the group has been intentionally scaring the elderly into writing letters to their representatives in Congress. > Read more
US: Hedge funds are trying to separate themselves from Wall Street banks in an attempt to avoid new regulations from Washington. > Read more
UK: The London Stock Exchange is quitting the industry's European association to directly lobby regulators considering a crack down on off-exchange trading. > Read more
US: The beverage industry is launching a PR campaign against proposed taxes on sugary drinks—though not as militantly as one might expect. > Read more
Honduras: The new government has hired PR firm Chlopak, Leonard, Schechter & Associates to bolster its image in Washington. > Read more
DC: The natural gas lobby is gearing up for a major campaign to influence climate change legislation in the Senate, after natural gas was virtually absent during the June vote in the House. > Read more
Copenhagen: A group of UK lawyers plan to lobby the G20 over climate change. Why? ‘The legal profession has been at the forefront… way before… Kyoto came into force.’ > Read more
DC: Lobbyists may get three days to review health care legislation, following a request for a delay by Senate Finance Committee member Pat Roberts. Video provided. > Read more
DC: Following delays in approval of climate change legislation, the White House has begun lobbying Congress by sending envoys to meet quietly with dozens of senators. > Read more
EU: A powerful trade union group has been intervening in a serious dispute between the EU and the Sri Lankan government. The EU is considering withdrawing trade preferences and concessions because of Sri Lanka's human rights record. > Read more
Canada: A ban on panhandling (begging) has caused a civil rights group to step up in defence of the rights of the homeless to use begging as a form of advocating and conveying their struggle to the public. > Read more
New Zealand: A new advocacy group is launching a campaign targeting the alcohol industry, which they blame for the country’s ‘drinks culture,’ and associated problems, such as binge drinking and fractured families. > Read more
DC: The natural gas lobby has been enjoying a winning streak on Capitol Hill, but will they soon be overtaken by the coal lobby? > Read more
US: Five large banks are stepping up their lobbying efforts and campaign contributions in an effort to fight off a bill which would regulate derivatives trading. With derivatives being a target of blame for the recession, the banks will face a difficult fight. > Read more
Japan’s large business lobby group is campaigning hard against the newly-elected national government. The premier-in-waiting has proposed a target which would reduce gas emissions by 25% by 2020, rather than the 8% proposed by the pro-business party. > Read more
The World Energy Council is lobbying for an establishment of global rules regarding trade and investment in energy before the Copenhagen climate meetings. > Read more
India: UK is lobbying India to liberalise their legal market in order to allow more British lawyers to practice there. Many local lawyers have opposed liberalisation, citing lack of reciprocity as a major disincentive. > Read more
Kenya: A top Washington PR firm has been hired by the Kenyan government to improve its image in the US over the next two years. > Read more
EU: London Mayor Boris Johnson is heading to Brussels to lobby the EU over alternative investment legislation. > Read more
Japan: Following national elections, the newly-elected government already has the business lobby up in arms over a proposed ban on a temporary worker scheme for factories. > Read more
The Netherlands have entered the top ten countries which spend the most money lobbying the US. This comes as an effort to establish Amsterdam as a main business centre. > Read more.For the full Top Ten list, Click Here.
‘The Great British Lobby’ has descended upon Washington DC in an attempt to influence the parts of US legislation which impact UK businesses. Companies such as Virgin Airlines and Anglo-American are counted amongst those who can be found in the Congressional halls. > Read more
India: With an increase in cases of swine flu, the Indian government has put together a communications team to prevent panic among the public. > Read more
Ireland: Would the Lisbon Treaty threaten European farms? One large farm lobby group sees the treaty as a step toward Turkey joining the EU, which could lead to a large influx of competing farmers. > Read more
France is set to join the list of countries introducing lobby registers, but with a twist—instead of being focused around organizations, it will be individuals that will need to register. Those who sign up will be agreeing to abide by a code of conduct in order to remain within the register. > Read more
US: Obama’s climate bill is being met with a $44.5m campaign on behalf of oil, gas and coal. This makes for a 50% increase in total lobbying budget for the industry. The world waits and watches as the bill will be a game-changer for the December UN climate negotiations in Copenhagen. > Read more
Singapore: Body Shop and Ruder have combined forces to launch a campaign against sex trafficking of young people and children. Body Shop’s Singapore stores will feature anti-trafficking window displays and leaflets while receiving strategic counsel and PR support from Ruder Finn. > Read more
UK: A large beer lobby group has launched a ‘super complaint’ as the price of an average pint shoots up. Camra, the Campaign for Real Ale, centred its attack on the “beer tie” arrangement which it claims has forced many pubs out of business. > Read more
US: UPS workers have been forced by their company to write letters to Congress as part of a lobbying campaign against FedEx, causing uproar from both UPS employees as well as FedEx officials. UPS claims these activities were voluntary, but some employees have quit as a result. > Read more
Germany: Five Parliamentarians have kept secret close ties with the country’s arms lobby, whilst also holding membership with the Bundestag’s defense committee. > Read more
US: The debate has heated up between agriculture campaigners. The upcoming bill regarding climate, due for completion this coming Fall, has left some predicting ‘agriculture loses.’ > Read more
US: The Health Insurance lobby takes on its critics and looks ahead to August as a critical month in the healthcare reform battle. > Read more
US: Obama grants the pharmaceutical industry a seat at the negotiation table, despite having condemned it in the past as a major source of the healthcare industry’s problems. > Read more
Russia hires Western PR firm to promote its image. Firms such as Ketchum Inc have signed contracts to help the country create a stronger reputation as a dependable energy supplier as well as an attractive destination for foreign investments. > Read more
EU: Cefic, the main chemicals lobby group in the EU, has been suspended for eight weeks for “making a joke” of the new EU lobby register system. > Read more
US: Green activists strip naked to protest at fraud committed by lobbyists. Forged constituency letters were used to strengthen the oil lobby’s argument against anti-climate legislation. Protesters have responded by demonstrating outside the firm’s headquarters wearing nothing but signs reading "Oil & Coal – Naked Fraud!" > Read more
US: Obama’s fight against “narrow interests” has failed. One ex-Clinton lobbyist claims that lobbying is as strong as ever - and the healthcare lobby is becoming stronger. > Read more
RUSSIA: VoIP technologies such as Skype are once again causing national security controversies, mainly stemming from the difficulties they pose for government wiretapping and communications monitoring. Vladimir Putin’s political party is teaming up with a large business lobbying group to combat VoIP technologies with new laws and regulations. > Read more
DC: The main lobbying group for pharmaceuticals is poised to launch a $100 million advertising campaign, mainly involving TV commercials, in an attempt to promote the importance of the industry to state economies. It is being strategically planned for the same time healthcare legislation will be debated and voted upon in Congress. > Read more
India: Billionaire Vijay Mallya, owner of the country’s largest airline, has been lobbying the government for more freedom for overseas airlines to have a stake in the Indian civil airlines. > Read more
US and INDIA: The US-India nuclear deal will soon open up India’s defense and security markets to US defense companies, thanks to advocacy group US-India Business Council. > Read more
The US is lobbying the EU to alter proposed regulations that would effectively block many US-based hedge fund and private-equity industries doing business in the EU. > Read more
US: Gun lobby stops short of third victory in Senate. A bill which would have allowed more freedom for gun carriers to take concealed weapons across state lines is blocked by big city mayors, police and victims groups. > Read more
US: Banks markedly decreased their spending on lobbying in the first quarter of the year following major pressure from the US Treasury Department. However, figures from the second quarter are showing a spike in spending on advocacy, causing further debate over how bailout funds are being spent. > Read more
Sri Lankan Government hires Washington lobbyists, Patton Boggs, to keep US attention away from its northern conflict.
UK: Using the class issue to support the aviation lobby – The Guardian deems Ed Miliband’s argument ‘yet another well-orchestrated sob story from the world's fastest-growing source of greenhouse gas emissions’
India: Essar and Shell lobby the Indian government for oil subsidies to create a level playing field. Private oil marketing companies are struggling to compete with government owned subsidised firms.
US: Small businesses are no longer speaking with a single voice on health care – lawmakers may now not be so wary about going against the crowd
UK: Treasury Minister, Lord Myners, promises to lobby for ‘major surgery’ on proposed EU legislation on hedge funds and private equity
Germany: A smart lobbying move to secure Germany’s gas supply? Germany’s former Chancellor and former Foreign Minster are lobbying against each other for competing pipelines.
US: Three of every four major health-care firms have at least one former insider on their lobbying payrolls > Read more... Washington Post argues for a ‘Fairness Doctrine’ for health care lobbying whereby for every penny lobbyists spend they must pay an organisation which opposes them, or plough money into non-partisan Congress watchdog groups. > Read more
Brussels: The Guardian argues the Commission is under the influence of big tobacco as it passes ‘timid’ anti-smoking legislation.
New Zealand: Government under the influence of the Australian bank lobby? Bank workers’ union Finsec criticised the government’s decision to halt an inquiry into banks’ interest rates and is calling for the government to release details of discussions they had with the banks.
US: The latest on the finance lobby’s opposition to Obama’s regulatory reforms: Coalition of Financial Services interests could spend several million dollars on its major lobby campaign against the proposed Consumer Financial Protection Agency > Read more... Debt settlement firms join the lobbying > Read more
Moscow: Nanotechnology firm lobbies the Kremlin to seek tax breaks for Russian technology. The lobbying efforts come as Russia wraps up plans to create $1bn venture fund with U.S. companies to invest in Russia.
US: Pharmaceutical industry lobby loses money and influence as Hoffman La Roche ends its membership of PhRMA.
Brussels: Environmental NGOs lobby against the Commission’s plans to finance a new coal plant in China. Groups including Greenpeace and Friends of their Earth argue that spending on the plant, which will use new technology to produce ‘near zero’ carbon emissions levels, would be better spent on renewable energy for China.
US: Name that lobbyist: a novel idea to turn the camera away from the Senators and on to an audience packed with lobbyists at a Senate Committee meeting. > Read more... Huffington Post argues this tactic diverts attention from the real problem – the centrist Democrats and Congress representatives who accept donations from the private healthcare and insurance industries. > Read more
US: Yet another bizarre way of accepting contributions from lobbyists: Washington lawmaker is to throw a campaign fundraiser in the guise of his 41st birthday party.
US: Corn Ethanol lobby succeeds on Capitol Hill despite facing opposition from oil producers, food manufacturers and environmental groups. House Democrats have conceded by delaying the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ethanol emissions rulemaking for at least five years.
US: Facebook hires new lobbyists in Washington and Brussels. > Read more... The Guardian argues Facebook is one of many businesses that prefer to lobby in Brussels, where they can operate further from the public eye than in other environments like Westminster > Read more
India – Delhi: From tent owners and caterers to electronic goods dealers, lobbyists campaign for concessions as the annual Budget is announced at the Sheila Dikshit Government, Delhi.
US: Lobbyists oppose some of Obama’s financial regulatory reforms. If the plan is stalled into next year, as predicted, it will give the financial industry time to step up their lobbying efforts… > Read more. Leading industry figures react to Obama’s proposed plan: a collection of comments. > Read more
UK: Business leaders step up efforts to lobby the Conservatives ahead of the autumn party conferences. The Institute of Directors, the CBI and the British Chamber of Commerce are among those who object in particular to Tory policies on planning and airport expansion.
Brussels: FT: Hedge funds prepare to lobby EU over draft regulations. The new rules propose limits on fund leverage and require funds to be registered in the EU countries in which they have investors.
US: Obama’s overhaul of the health care system sparks a 41% increase in lobbying among medical insurers and drug companies who are fighting the proposed public insurance plan > Read more ...Bill Moyers interviews Robert Reich, former Secretary of Labor, on health care reform, the role of lobbyists in the ongoing debate, and how Obama may fight back.> Read more
CNN: Big Tobacco: A history of its decline. The story of the how the pioneer of special-interest lobbying has tried to adapt to the changing market.
Reuters: “Strange bedfellows” – Environmental organization and big oil gang up on coal. Lobbying duo, the Sierra Club and Chevron suggest uniting against the coal lobby in Washington, potentially marking a larger movement towards cooperation.
One of Europe’s most powerful lobbyists, Ivan Hodac, fights to protect Europe’s automotive industry. Ivan Hodac is the industry's chief lobbyist and Chief Executive of the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA).
UK: Tory MPs accuse Government of covering up BAA lobbying over Heathrow’s third runway proposals.
China’s lack of transparency means HP and Dell are left to lobby after surprise new legislation on censorship software is passed.
How the Chicken-Fat Car was killed off by Big Soap’s lobbying: A true story of how environmental policy sometimes comes about.
US: Federal Reserve seeks to lobby Congress – the Fed has hired former Enron Corp. lobbyist and Senior Adviser in the Clinton administration, Linda Robertson, to fight skepticism amongst lawmakers of its growing power.
US: New York Times: Banking lobby to play crucial role in financial industry restructuring – The banking lobby’s recent success in crushing the bankruptcy proposal indicates the industry’s continuing influence over economic reform. The change in bankruptcy law, which would give judges the power to lower the amount owed on a home loan, was rejected by the banks on the (disputed) grounds that it threatened their profits, forcing them to raise rates.
Shell creates Executive Vice President of Global Government Relations position in Washington D.C., indicating the importance of the federal government’s energy policy and its new climate bill are to big business.
Facing increased regulatory scrutiny in the US and Europe, Google Inc. steps up lobby effort to convince policy makers that despite its huge lead in the search market, it facilitates competition between other businesses.
Brussels: Success for European lobbies of dairy farmers as EU promises financial support to the industry. The decision comes after a series of protests and threatened strikes by dairy farmers who are facing ruin as low market prices make production uneconomical > Read more ...On the other side of the lobby, the successful lobbying of the protectionists and the continuation of subsidies will have a detrimental effect on the dairy industries of smaller trading nations such as New Zealand. > Read more
Taiwan: Solar energy firms lobby lawmakers to push through a bill on renewable energy development. Since its introduction in 1997, the bill has been stalled as lawmakers representing interest groups have haggled over the purchase prices of specific renewable sources.
Brussels: Since the European Commission made atomic energy an official part of the EU’s climate-change policy, the nuclear lobby has gained strength, despite lingering criticism.
US: Credit Card Companies suffer a landslide loss in Washington in spite of the $9,170,573 spent on lobbying in 2009. The Senate voted to pass a bill that will inhibit the ability of card companies to raise interest rates and charge fees.
US: Financial Times: The banking industry is hiring ‘armies of lobbyists and lawyers’ in preparation for a battle over the restructuring of the financial industry.
Brussels: National Association of Health Food Stores (NAHS) launches lobbying campaign as European Food Supplements Directive threatens to bankrupt the health food industry. The Directive, introduced in 2002, aims to tighten controls on the market for natural vitamins and minerals, an industry worth £350m per year in the UK alone.
US: Obama’s climate plans to cut carbon-dioxide emissions have sparked a lobbying boom on Capitol Hill, involving all ten of Washington’s top lobbying firms > Read more Microsoft, Google, and eBay join the usual suspects: power companies and big oil > Read more
Washington: Barack Obama's key climate bill hit by $45m PR campaign - Surge in oil, gas and coal industry lobbying against Democratic leadership on 'cap and trade' legislation
Ministers dropped Vioxx protest after lobbying from US drug firm: Private lobbying by an American pharmaceutical company saw government ministers back down from supporting British people who claim one of its failed drugs caused them heart attacks and strokes.
US: Pharma lobbying brings out big guns drugmakers are working to ensure that President Barack Obama’s move to encourage cheaper medical care doesn’t end up dictating treatments to doctors and insurers.
US: Revolving Door between Congress and Lobby Firms continues
USA, Israel & Iran: The Great Pistachio Nut Lobby (we did not make this one up) An adroit lobbying campaign has cracked open the bountiful Israeli market for U.S pistachios.
Brussels: As European lawmakers debate how to keep access to the Internet free and equal - so-called network neutrality - they are being bombarded, not unsurprisingly, by lobbyists.
London: RIBA hails lobbying success on VAT cut for home repairs. Anna Scott-Marshall, Head of Public Affairs at the RIBA, said: “This announcement is fantastic news for architects and homeowners, marking a significant step forward in our campaign to help the profession work through the recession".
Public Affairs World.com is delighted to connect you to the 24 judges who will this year be the ones to influence if you want to win one of Dod’s annual UK Public Affairs Awards.
Washington: Dave Wenhold President of the American League of Lobbyists…. "I'm proud of what I do. I'm extremely proud of it," said Wenhold, president of the American League of Lobbyists, his profession's trade group.
Las Vegas, USA, Lobbying for Lobbying: Public Affairs Is Critical to Your Business. With a full blown recession, a new government and new wave of communication comprised of all forms of social media, our world as we knew it has changed forever. With this new environment your business is at risk for new taxes, regulations and legislation. What do you do?
David Miller from the Alliance for Lobbying Transparency and Ben Atfield, a partner in Ellwood and Atfield debate "What should be done about the lobbying industry?"...."What would you call your new independent body? Of Democracy?..
London, The Guardian, George Monbiot This lobbying scandal confirms it. The dying days of Labour are upon us, A party elected to stamp out collusion has abjectly failed. Now, expect it to be mired in sleaze claims, as the Tories were in 1997
New York Times; WASHINGTON — The financial giant Bank of America says it is no longer lobbying the federal government about its unfolding bank bailout. …., lobbying was just too unseemly. (however).. recipient of another $45 billion, made the opposite call. While trying to keep a low profile, the company is still fielding an army of Washington lobbyists working on a host of issues, including the bailout.
Kevin Bogardus of The Hill, presents the annual Lobby income of the top Washington Lobby firms
Power and influence are the trademarks of Washington D.C.'s K Street, a major thoroughfare that is known as a hotbed for lobbyists, advocacy groups and think tanks.
The only argument for hiring lobbyists with tax dollars is that everyone else is doing it.
Although American corporations have been under intense financial strain in recent months, there is one category of spending they haven’t cut back on: lobbying and campaign contributions to influence government policy.
Nonprofits have dropped their usual detachment to crusade for healthcare reform in California…They have to be careful about IRS rules.
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Wyeth, which makes the popular antidepressant Effexor and other drugs, spent $756,650 lobbying
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GlaxoSmithKline says it will stop giving corporate political contributions – though the company will keep intact a political action committee that has given away millions in recent election cycles.
> Read More
About Public Affairs World.com
What is Public Affairs World.com? (PAW) It is an internet news and content aggregator, bringing the best content on the web to in-house advocates and professional lobbyists.
Why Public Affairs World.com? PAW was set up by Ben Atfield in 2009. He has had a long and active interest in Politics and Public Affairs. He found that there was not already an aggregator that helped him access the web-based information that he is interested in, and with the help and advice of many friends and fellow travellers developed PAW, the rest as they say is history...
What is Public Affairs? PAW embraces a very broad definition of what Public Affairs means. There is a substantial literature regarding its “definition”. Suffice to say PAW content covers Lobbying, Government Relations, Public Affairs, Public Policy, Issues Management, Stakeholder Relations, External Affairs, Corporate Communications, Single Issue Campaigning, Media Relations, Social Marketing and political debate. It does not intend to cover areas such as Marketing, Consumer PR and Advertising.
Who is PAW for? Anyone who is interested in the above-mentioned disciplines. We hope to have content that will engage senior-level individuals and those who have an inquisitive intellect from all market sectors and organisational types.
How to use PAW. We hope to introduce you to ideas, criticism, best practice, stories and much, much more from countries, sectors, groups (friends and foe) from around the world and outside of your day-to-day routine. You might use it as your home page and read an article most days or use its links section to access frequently-visited resources. Or you might simply come to us once a month to see if an article catches your eye or check that you haven’t missed out on some new initiative or industry gossip.
Editorial Advisory Board
All editorial enquiries should be sent to Ben Atfield. Ben alone takes full responsibility for the content on PAW. PAW also has an Editorial Advisory Board of senior leaders globally who on an ad hoc and voluntary basis suggest ideas and content for PAW. The Editorial Advisory Board act entirely in an informal and personal capacity and take no responsibility for the content on PAW. It includes:
London: Dan Mobley – Group Head of Public Affairs - Standard Chartered Bank
Brussels: Tom Spencer – Executive Director – European Centre for Public Affairs
Brussels: Andrew Johnson – Head of Public Affairs – Euro RSCG
Washington: Clarke Dryden Camper – NYSE
London: Gavin Ellwood – Head-Hunter – Ellwood and Atfield
Hong Kong: Craig Hoy - Executive Director - PublicAffairsAsia.com
London: Lionel Zetter - Public Affairs Consultant & Director - Enterprise
London: Miguel Veiga-Pestana - Vice-President Global External Affairs - Unilever PLC
Contribute to PAW, send us your suggested content
We actively welcome recommendations of interesting and relevant content to be added to our four main categories, Books & Reports of Note, Articles & News, Lobbies & Campaigns and Links. Only information that is publicly available and in English will be considered. Please send your recommendation to firstname.lastname@example.org Unfortunately we will not be able to reply to your email but if we have space and it meets our benchmark you will see it published and have the satisfaction to knowing that 1000s of people globally will be able to read it too. We also welcome ideas and suggestions regarding the site structure, headings etc. We are here as a resource for you. If you think you can improve PAW please let us have your ideas.
Once a month PAW will email you a brief summary of the very best material featured.
Given the enthusiastic response to PAW, we are delighted to have launched an internship programme. We are even more delighted to announce that Ailsa Nicol is our first intern. If you are interested in being considered for an internship with us, please send your CV and a covering letter to email@example.com.