This paper intends to discuss the importance of interests groups from the standpoint of government business relations. The purpose of this critical essay aims firstly to discuss the underlying principles of interest groups and the foundations that make them. Secondly, identify the effectiveness of these interest groups and demonstrate how they impact on democratic societies at both an organisational and executive level. Finally, this paper will discuss the various methods and tactics that interest groups employ not only to lobby for members but to engage within the political environment that they seek to influence. This paper also intends to provide discussion on how interest groups impact on government business relations and how these groups form an integral structure within democratic society, and the importance government business relations has on this structure.
What are Interest Groups
A categorical definition of what constitutes an interest group is still debated amongst academics, however, conservatively an interest group is ‘a private organisation that attempts to influence government but does not nominate candidates for public office (Reference). It is clear then that an interest group is based on an organised group with a common goal or action plan. These groups can be split into two rather broad categories, promotional and sectional (Reference). Sectional groups such as churches, motoring organisations and farming groups seek to look after particular sections of society to whom share a common interest, looking globally groups such as Amnesty International would fit into this category.