Interest Groups & Lobbying

One of our specialties at the Center for Congressional and Presidential Studies is the study of lobbying reform in Washington DC. CCPS hosts seminars on lobbying reform efforts. In addition, our scholars and students have produced numerous papers and articles on lobbying reforms and our scholars have been interviewed by various media outlets about lobbying reform. On this page, you will find information on our work in this critical area of study.

Current Projects

Professor and former CCPS Director James Thurber is currently working on an analysis of the changes in strategies and tactics of lobbying under the Trump administration. He addresses the following questions: Have there been major changes in lobbying since the election of President Trump? Has President Trump “drained the swamp” of lobbyist influence and special interests? Is he implementing his new code of ethics related to lobbying? What are the major ethical and legal issues associated with the Trump administration and lobbying? What has been the impact of new forms of lobbying and ethical issues under the /trump administration for public policy?

Thurber is also currently working with the OECD on ethics and lobbying reform in the U.S. and OECD nations. He has also focused on analysis of and reforms in the Foreign Agents Registration Act.

  • Congress and Diaspora Politics: The Influence of Ethnic and Foreign Lobbying (edited with Professors David Dulio and Colton C. Campbell)(SUNY Press, 2018) examines the impact of lobbying efforts by foreign governments and domestic ethnic groups on US policymaking. Over time, the number and variety of ethnic groups have grown, and foreign governments have turned to professional lobbyists rather than relying on their diplomatic corps to cultivate relationships with Congress. This book helps to bridge the gap of two important areas of study: ethnicity and lobbying.
  • “Teaching Public Policy Advocacy by Combining Academic Knowledge and Professional Wisdom,” Interest Groups & Advocacy, Vol. 4, No. 1, March 2015, pp. 40-52 with Patrick Griffin. This article describes the foundation and approach of the Public Affairs and Advocacy Institute.