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Title: Europeanization of corporate lobbying in the enlarged EU : the missing link in the case of Hungary
Author: Sallai, Dorottya
ISNI:       0000 0004 5366 3692
Awarding Body: King's College London (University of London)
Current Institution: King's College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2014
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The study explores the puzzle that despite the growing corporate representation at EU level, large firms from Eastern Europe are under-represented in Brussels. It investigates the Europeanization process of corporate lobbying from a comparative capitalism perspective, through the case study of Hungary and the shadow case of the UK. I argue that the theorisation of EU lobbying requires a firm-centred approach and the integration of managerial choice into the framework of analysis. Findings show that firms in Hungary develop top-level, network-based lobbying strategies that are not professionalized. As this type of strategy is non-transposable to the EU level, it creates a ‘golden cage’ for domestic businesses. I find indeed that the ‘door’ of the golden cage is open to foreign firms, but creates a barrier of entry, whereas networks ‘lock in’ local firms and thus create a ‘barrier of exit’. Besides I argue that the organizational arrangement of lobbying also has a direct impact on firms’ Europeanization ability. The findings suggest that firms rely on their domestic lobbying strategies in their Europeanization process and try to transpose their domestic lobbying structures to the EU level. Consequently, those firms that originate from institutional contexts, where the domestic environment supports the professionalization of lobbying, will find it easier to Europeanize than those, which come from states where networks and informal relationships dominate interest representation. Hence I argue that the institutional environment in Hungary has a direct impact on domestic firms’ EU level lobbying engagement. This study suggests that if we were to consider the absence of Eastern European firms from Brussels and hence the unequal representation of Eastern and Western firms as a problem in terms of 'democratic' deficit, the solution to this problem would have to look beyond Brussels, because the reasons for the absence may lay in the domestic system.
Supervisor: Heath, Christian Consitt ; Schnyder, Gerhard Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available