Corporate capture?

The role of large corporations in lobbying for policy change was the subject of a workshop at Medact‘s recent conference.

A number of Government appointed expert committees have recently made recommendations on pressing health issues, including minimum pricing of alcohol and food labelling. But their proposals have been kicked into the long grass by government after intensive lobbying by the food and drinks industry.

David Miller, Professor of Sociology at the University of Bath explained how companies have a number of different ways of exerting influence on policy at a national and European level, including the presence and popularity of their brands, think tanks, lobbying groups, ‘partnership bodies’ where EU civil servants and industry representatives together advise the EU on policy, charities (funded by the industry) which purport to represent ‘consumer interests’, sophisticated PR, and ‘the revolving door’ through which civil servants move from Government departments straight into related jobs in industry.

Here are links to, or about, some of the organisations mentioned by Professor Miller:

Professor Millier is a co-founder of Spinwatch, a public interest investigations organisation.

Medact is an organisation of health professionals working for a ‘safer, fairer and better world’.

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